Khashoggi’s Final Words – The Right To Speak Freely – Uninformed or Misinformed – Free Expression

Dear LostMessiah Readers:

We are going to begin the weekend with this final blog for Friday, a reprint of the latest New Yorker article” Jamal Khashoggi’s Final Words – For Other Journalists Like Him.” 

This article is particularly relevant because he spoke for the voice of oppressed Middle Easterners. We can only aspire to the eloquence that he possessed. While we are trying to speak for the accountability of the Jewish world for our own, those who write to us daily ARE THE OPPRESSED. The abused children, the defrauded, the insular and uneducated are, in Khashoggi’s words: the “uninformed or the misinformed.” As the headline of his last published words asserted, “What the Arab world needs most is free expression.”  The ultra-Orthodox Jewish world is really no different.

FUNDAMENTALISM whether Jewish, Arab, or anything else is in no uncertain terms still FUNDAMENTALISM. Denial of someone’s free speech, in whatever form instituted, is still suppression.

Khashoggi’s death, from what we have been told, was accomplished by dismemberment while he was still alive. He was then carried out of the embassy in pieces. This was more than simply murdering someone. This was making a very public statement to others: “Look what will happen to you.”

LostMessiah’s online blogger believed that anonymity was necessary because she feared that she would meet an untimely death for speaking out. In the ultra-Orthodox Jewish world of setting examples, however,  instead of using a bone-saw to dismember a voice of scrutiny, the Plaintiff’s weapon of choice in this case is the King’s County Courthouse. Instead of 20 different people carrying the pieces of a body out of an embassy to set an example, the Plaintiffs are using a law firm with nearly unrivaled and intimate knowledge of the inner workings of the King’s County Judiciary -family in high places to delay, to suppress, to confuse and to accuse. 

Similar to censorship commonplace in the countries within the Middle East, the Soviet Union, China and other countries, the Court in the Kestenbaum and Fortis v. Globus case has sealed the documents of the case pending a hearing, thereby effectively judicially censoring the documents. Any analysis of their details, the activity of the Court, the allegations is all censured pending a now extended deadline.

To the family of Jamal Khashoggi, we cannot begin to express how deeply saddened we are by the loss of your family member and how deeply disturbed we are by the forces of evil that must have been involved to so precisely carry out an unthinkable act of violence. We can’t begin to offer you words that would provide any peace. We can say that we believe wholeheartedly in what he was doing. His death means something. It will hopefully be the voice of change in areas that he so desperately wanted to influence.

 

Jamal Khashoggi’s Final Words—for Other Journalists Like Him

On October 3rd, the day after Jamal Khashoggi disappeared, the Washington Post received a final column left behind with his assistant when he went off to Turkey to get married. It was, in seven hundred words, poignant and personal and epically appropriate, considering his fate. “The Arab world was ripe with hope during the spring of 2011. Journalists, academics and the general population were brimming with expectations of a bright and free Arab society within their respective countries,” he opined. “They expected to be emancipated from the hegemony of their governments and the consistent interventions and censorship of information.” Instead, rulers grew ever more repressive after the short-lived Arab Spring.

Today, hundreds of millions of people across the Middle East “are unable to adequately address, much less publicly discuss, matters that affect the region and their day-to-day lives,” Khashoggi wrote. They are either “uninformed or misinformed” by draconian censorship and fake state narratives. As the headline of his last published words asserted, “What the Arab world needs most is free expression.”

In his death, Khashoggi, a Saudi journalist and former government supporter who became a vocal and fearless critic of the current Saudi crown prince, has galvanized global attention far more than he was able to do during his life. The horrific details of his murder and dismemberment have had an effect he would never have imagined—putting into serious question the fate of a Saudi leader, the state of U.S.-Saudi relations, American foreign-policy goals in the world’s most volatile region, and even policies that have kept dictators in power. The repercussions are only beginning.

But Khashoggi was hardly a lone voice decrying political repression in the Middle East, as he acknowledged in his final Post column. Saudi Arabia may be the most cruel and ruthless government in the region, but it uses tactics embraced by dictators, sheikhs, and Presidents across twenty-two countries.

In 2014, Egypt’s military-dominated government seized all print copies of the newspaper Al-Masry Al-Youm, whose name means “The Egyptian Today.” Al-Masry Al-Youm is that rare private newspaper in the Arab world where young reporters once dared to question government policies in hard-hitting editorials and groundbreaking journalism. “The Egyptian government’s seizure of the entire print run of a newspaper, al-Masry al Youm, did not enrage or provoke a reaction from colleagues. These actions no longer carry the consequence of a backlash from the international community,” Khashoggi wrote. “Instead, these actions may trigger condemnation quickly followed by silence.”

The world, particularly the West, is partly culpable for looking the other way, he wrote. It is a tragic irony that the world is paying attention to Khashoggi’s death, yet still not making an issue of a sweeping problem that could determine the future of a region of twenty-two countries and four hundred million people. On Thursday, the U.S. Treasury Secretary, Steve Mnuchin, announced that he would not attend the Saudi investment conference known as “Davos in the Desert,” which is pivotal to the crown prince’s plans to modernize the kingdom’s oil-reliant economy. The British trade minister, the French and Dutch finance ministers, and the president of the International Monetary Fund also backed out after Khashoggi’s disappearance. But no foreign government is addressing the broader political practices in any other country, or any other case, in the region.

In his column, Khashoggi drew attention to imprisoned colleagues who receive no coverage. “My dear friend, the prominent Saudi writer Saleh al-Shehi, wrote one of the most famous columns ever published in the Saudi press,” Khashoggi noted. “He unfortunately is now serving an unwarranted five-year prison sentence for supposed comments contrary to the Saudi establishment.” Shehi, who had more than a million followers on Twitter, was charged with “insulting the royal court” for his statements about widespread government corruption in his columns for the newspaper Al Watan and on a local television program.

Michael Abramowitz, the president of Freedom House and a former national editor at the Washington Post, told me that Khashoggi rightly identified the broader stakes. “Khashoggi’s final column accurately pinpointed the appalling lack of political rights and civil liberties in much of the Arab world, especially the right to freely express oneself,” he said. Khashoggi began his last piece by citing Freedom House’s 2018 report—and the fact that only one Arab country, Tunisia, is ranked as “free.” Abramowitz told me, “What is especially sad is that, while we are properly focussed on the outrageous actions by the Saudi government to silence one critic, we must also remember that countless other bloggers, journalists, and writers have been jailed, censored, physically threatened, and even murdered—with little notice from the rest of the world. And, in some cases, notably Egypt, conditions have deteriorated.”

Continue reading

Advertisements

Please Show Your Support for LM and Your Global Blogger: https://www.gofundme.com/free-speech-lostmessiah-and-jg

download (2)

Chilling Free Speech Legal Defense

https://www.gofundme.com/free-speech-lostmessiah-and-jg

LostMessiah readers – your blogger could use your help – not in huge amounts – 

and anonymity would be protected.

LostMessiah has over 1200 visits each day. If each visitor donated $18.00, we would be in really good shape moving forward.

In 2015 Failed Messiah succumbed to the difficulties of pressure from the communities he investigated. You say he sold out. We say, the pressure was likely too much. 

LostMessiah will not be bought, will not be frightened and has been re-energized. But yesterday’s Court appearance (October 17, 2018) proved that Freedom of Speech, Freedom of Press, Freedom of Expression and the Right to Due Process are luxuries we should not ignore or take for granted.

We are asking our audience, readership and those who might be responsible for publicizing this issue to assist.

By allowing the record to remain sealed without appropriate arguments, in fact by refusing to hear arguments at all, the presiding Judge, censored free speech at least until December 5, 2018.

The presiding Judge, in 2014, campaigned with and now sits on the Court with the sister of the attorney handling the case on behalf of the Plaintiff. 

Please be clear on the ramifications.

To Have Free Speech in the United States or to be Denied Free Speech in the Unites States? – Kestenbaum and Fortis v. Globus Update

download

FREEDOM OF SPEECH IN THE UNITED STATES IS NOT GUARANTEED. ANYONE WHO TELLS YOU OTHERWISE IS MISTAKEN.

Records were submitted provisionally under seal and as of today, absent an adjudication of any case between Plaintiffs and Defendant, are remaining under seal.

In fact, the Court decided to push any discussion on the merits of the matter until December 5, 2018.

 

CASE UPDATE:

At 10:00am today, August 17, 2018, there was a hearing which was, ostensibly to argue, amongst other things, Plaintiff’s motion to seal the record. Please keep in mind, the documents were submitted provisionally under seal and the Court must decide of a permanent seal is consistent with the First Amendment. 

At 9:45 Defendant arrived at the court and was told that the Plaintiffs had requested an adjournment to the case, which procedurally in the Kings County Court, they are entitled to request and to receive.

The documents are under currently sealed even though there has never been an adjudication as between Plaintiff and Defendant, in direct violation of Defendant’s rights to Freedom of Speech and Freedom of Press.

 

A Financial Request for Help – Protection First Amendment, Free Speech, Privacy and the Right to Blog Anonymously

gf.me/u/mvgfpb

 

LostMessiah and Julie Globus Financial Assistance.

To our worldwide audience which has supported our endeavors for 2 and one-half years. We need your help. You have heard enough about a lawsuit. The following is the GoFundMe information.

https://www.gofundme.com/free-speech-lostmessiah-and-jg?pc=fb_co_shareflow_w&rcid=r01-153946255393-ca98a7bb0cca4f47

 

 

 

 

Suppression of Free Speech and Press – By Murder or Lawsuit?

Free Speech Should Not Be Allowed to Die, Neither by Murder nor by Lawsuit, A Segue into the Death of Seven Journalists

A funny thing happened in August. After months of not blogging, we got back in the saddle and started posting articles again. Why? Because journalistic integrity came into question. We were threatened and that has to mean something. 
Despite being asked to remove an article and doing so, one of two that had been published in 2016, LostMessiah’s name, along with that of an online blogger, was unceremoniously dragged into a lawsuit. The subject of the lawsuit? Hard to tell. It appears to be the remaining article.
The blogger had facilitated the takedown in good faith at the request of the attorneys representing the subjects of that blog. Why? Because, well… there seemed to be more important fish to fry and a single article’s removal at the behest of an allegedly prominent family did not seem like it was worth a fight. If we took it down, however disheartening that would be, the situation would be resolved. Who really has the time? Or the money?  
It didn’t go away. It might have been worth the fight on that day in August.
To resurrect what would otherwise be a problem with the Statute of Limitations, (one year from date of publication in New York) the Complaint in the lawsuit appears to allege that the subject article was taken down by WordPress and that the alleged blogger republished. It was neither taken down by WordPress, nor was it then republished by LostMessiah. The complaint also alleges, both unequivocally and incorrectly we must add, that the blogger is LostMessiah AND another website, WebActivism.
Anonymity in this space, blogging about oligarchs and diamond dealers, Congo miners and allegedly corrupt police officers can be a dangerous thing. We valued and continue to value our anonymity for that reason. Our absence worried our readers. To our readers, it was borne of time constraints not of safety, fear or reprisals nor payment. We will be asking for financial assistance from our readers. For that we apologize in advance.

Continue reading