|(Photo credit: saraab™)|
I had a finger waved at me the other day, accusing me of being 'craven' in not joining in the chorus of voices questioning the trial, the treatment of the prisoners and so on. I thought it was quite an extraordinary thing for someone to do - demand that I take a stance on an issue because they had a viewpoint. I didn't see them taking to a blog in their own name to denounce it all. But it's okay for them to expect me to.
Truth be told, I know absolutely nothing about the trial beyond what our papers have told us - and much of that coverage has been through the national newswire of the UAE, WAM. I assume it's all been filtered, because there's no 'alternative voice' out there. Not from the UAE's media and certainly not from international media. Investigative journalism has either failed, been utterly indifferent or decided there's little enough here to investigate. I know very little indeed about the detail of the case as, I suspect, do we all.
Knowing so little, I find it hard to have a polarised opinion. The trial was conducted by a court constituted by the rulers of this country, under the law of the country. You might not like the country or its law, but that's the facts. It's as valid as a verdict handed down in the UK, Ecuador, China, Singapore or France. Different countries have different forms of rule, judicial systems and standards of what I suppose we should call probity. Some are aggressively open (hello, Scandinavia!) and some are aggressively secretive and intrusive (hello, America!). All limit opposition to the incumbent system of governance to the constituted organs of governance. Really. Ask Ed Snowden. That's our world.
The verdict of the court has been reached. And that, as far as I'm concerned, is that. Please do remember to use your real name and email when you use the comments to call me craven...