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Bahrain Has Not Lifted Martial Law

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TEHRAN, June 2 (ICANA) – Bahrain has not really lifted the martial law in the country and the claim is an attempt to influence the international motoring organization, a political analyst says.
Thursday, June 02, 2011 11:22:35 PM
Bahrain Has Not Lifted Martial Law

According the Bahraini government, the country has lifted the martial law which went into effect in March in the wake of popular protests calling for a change in the country's political structure.

Press TV has talked with the chairman of the London-based Committee against Torture in Bahrain, Rodney Shakespeare, on the issue.

Q: US President Barack Obama criticized the Bahraini crackdown in a speech last month, saying the government should begin dialogue with peaceful opposition leaders.

Now interestingly, Bahraini King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa has offered a dialogue on reform in a speech on Tuesday. From the way you are observing, is the king taking lead of what the US president is saying, or how can we analyze this gesture?

Shakespeare: Well, the king is certainly taking heed. You see, Obama is a liar, and the king is a liar. They have no intention at all of in fact giving democratic rights at all in Bahrain. Now on the question of the alleged lifting of the martial law, there has been no lifting; you have vicious thugs roaming in the streets, pulling people in, and they are being beaten up and tortured. Last week, was exactly the same as they were tortured and beaten up as they are today.

The reason why they announced the lifting was simply try to influence the International Automobile Federation motoring organization, which is due to consider the question of the Formula One motor race in Bahrain, which at the moment has been postponed.

It would be a shameful day if that motor race is held, and I say to the authorities do not do anything to give approval to this ghastly torturing fanatic regime In Bahrain.

There is an aspect of things which is not been generally taken in the comments which are coming out, which is the attack on women. If a woman recites a poem, she is immediately arrested and tortured. That is partly because the Wahhabist, who are culturally banned, do not know what a poem is and they think it must be something particularly evil. Also, it is because they do not even like the fact that women read.

I am pleased to say that in Iran more than half the university student are women but that is not the case in places like Saudi Arabia. And this attack in Bahrain is political; yes, it is also political against women, and women ought to wake up to that. In Saudi Arabia, a woman driving a car is immediately seen as a threat to the male fascists who run the thing.

So there you are: first of all the martial law has not been lifted, it has in fact got more vicious and worse. Secondly, their claimed that it is lifted in the attempt to claim that things are back to normal is particularly designed to influence the motor racing organization. And thirdly, the whole thing is really an attack on women to insure that they have no right whatsoever.

Q: You said that it was a shame to see the motor race to actually take place. Do you see any chances for it?

Shakespeare: Well, you see, the motor racing authorities are generally linked with the big money interest with places like the USA, the UK, and elsewhere, and they are in the business of providing entertainment for the big media organizations virtually, all of which seem to be controlled by Zionists.

So we have to face the fact that when things are coming to a crunch, people who listen to Press TV know the truth. But there may well be fascist forces, and fascism is coming to the US by the end of the year, who think that they will put in something like motor races and try to control and entertain the population with things like motor racing. We see it undoubtedly exciting, but the purpose is to divert the intention of people from these serious issues of economy and politics.

So I am going to keep an open mind, and I think it is possible that they will agree to go to Bahrain. But let everybody who has the means of contact put the word out that this will be a shameful day for the world, to actually go and support torturers and killers. People who do a sword dance and show they like hacking off people's heads, people who will arrest and torture a women for reciting a poem, people who shoot at medics and doctors, [people] who when they got the female doctors in hospital, forced them to sign statements saying they had doubled or tripled the length of the person's wounds.

This is because they are trying to hide up the fact that the Bahraini troops and the Saudi troops have been using dumdum bullets. The whole thing is shocking. I hope that there is no question about of that motor race taking place in Bahrain.

Q: Interestingly, while the king spoke, military prosecutors summoned four members of the main opposition party Al-Wefaq, including its leaders and rights activists like Nabeel Rajab, though they were released hours later. But how does that go with the king's recent comments?

Shakespeare: What they are trying to show, or trying to state, is [that] things are coming back to normal. And they are doing that because the Bahraini economy is down the tube.

You see, the killer Al Khalifa's dream of a modern financial center with tourists coming for a week or a weekend, and with shoppers, and with that frisson of excitement which comes from Formula One motor racing, that is their image of the future and it is all now being destroyed. So they are trying to give an impression that everything is back to normal.

And to do that, they are also listing false confessions, piles of paper, and they call activists into court and essentially say to them, "You will now stop what you are doing, and you will agree that things are back to normal or we will kill you." But this of course is a thoroughly bankrupt policy.

The whole world as a whole now knows that this regime is thoroughly corrupt and it cannot negotiate. You cannot negotiate if you have torture chambers, you have guns and you are killing people. You cannot negotiate with unarmed people who you have tortured and you have killed.

The only way forward is that you have to release those political prisoners, allow elections, pay compensation, and put the pearl back into Pearl Square.

So, it is like a completely bankrupt policy which cannot go forward and the only way that it can appear to go forward is if the motor racing organizations agree to hold their races, and they must not do that; that will be their complete sell-out, not just of democracy, it will be the sellout of women.

I just noticed that in fact that one of your headlines a minute or so ago. It was about a women activist who has just been arrested. The authorities in Bahrain, supported by the Saudi perverts who get their kicks from beating up little girls, are now turning on the women. I identify this as the latest nasty, vicious trend which is going on. So everybody watch out for it, and the women of this world, start to take action! This is aimed at you, as much as it is aimed at democracy.

Q: Let me share with you a line from the Facebook page of the “February 14 Revolution Youth Coalition.” It reads, “Protests are to be in main streets and squares…the movement must return to important places ahead of the imminent return, God willing, to Martyr's (Pearl) Square.”

What does that tell about the will that exists to continue this revolution, especially, after this harsh clampdown over this past couple of months?

Shakespeare: It tells you of the indomitable spirit of the Bahraini people, and that spirit goes much wider than Bahrain. It actually goes into Saudi Arabia itself, and it goes into Egypt, into Jordan, into Tunisia, into Libya; it goes into all these countries. You see its part of an Islamic awakening, it is part of a democratic awaking, and it is a part of a demographic awakening.

Young people are educated: no jobs, rising food prices, and they are all on Facebook and twitter. And it is also now going to the question of a female awakening, [women] who realize that they have been bullied and beaten by these thugs and ghouls. For example, the ones in Saudi Arabia would not allow even a woman to drive. It is absolutely outrageous.

So, the Facebook has got it right. It is the indomitable spirit of the Bahraini people, but it is wider than that. And I call on everybody to take the action that they can take; to contact their trade unions and their politicians and say we are fed up with the lies which are told by President Obama.

He has all the troops 200 yards down the road. If he actually supported democracy, he would walk down the road and stop this torture and suppression. He has no intention of doing so, and that is because he does not understand what the long-term interests of America are.

America can buy its oil on the open market at the usual market prices, the same way like everybody else. It is a complete lie to say that it needs to have a huge naval base in order to protect its interests. America is now despised and hated, right the way throughout the Middle East, and when it wakes up to do that, it may then decide to do what it ought to do. Having betrayed democracy, it ought to turn around and betray these foolish torturers and killers.

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