This is a very sad day for the freedom of expression in the Middle East:
Egyptian Blogger Sentenced to Prison
ALEXANDRIA, Egypt — An Egyptian blogger was convicted of insulting Islam and President Hosni Mubarak and sentenced to four years in prison on Thursday in Egypt’s first prosecution of a blogger.
Abdel Kareem Nabil, a 22-year-old former student at Egypt’s Al-Azhar University, an Islamic institution, had pleaded innocent to all charges, and human rights groups had called for his release.
The judge issued the verdict in a brief, five-minute session in a court in the Mediterranean city of Alexandria. He sentenced Nabil to three years in prison for insulting Islam and inciting sedition and another year for insulting Mubarak. Nabil had faced a possible maximum sentence of up to nine years in prison.
Washingtom Post :: 22 Feb, ’07
And if Egypt leads, the Arab world are supposed to follow, right? So the arrest, detention and jailing of people for simply writing their thoughts is forging ahead unchecked in the Middle East… and there doesn’t seem to be any will whatsoever for anyone to stop it, even for a moment, to think of what that is going to do for this and future generations.
Yet another reason for one to maintain their anonymity at all times.
Big brother is not just watching, but is waiting to pounce at the slightest chance to silence critics in the full sight of the world and even they are not interested in doing anything about the situation.