Mixed messages

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This is on Al-Wasat‘s front page this morning:

On the right, the Crown Prince inaugurates the building of a low income community of 444 much needed houses in Malkiya, one of the Bahraini fishing villages. While on the left, a picture of two children of 12 years old sitting on a bench inside the court in which they were convicted of the crimes of possession of inflammable material, rioting and participating in an unlawful gathering.

Twelve years old criminals.

But they’re not the only ones. Apprehending, incarcerating and imprisoning children has become a legitimate exercise of our ever vigilant security apparatus. According to human rights organisations and the very same security apparatus, there are some 65 (yes, sixty-five) children in prison either awaiting trial or having been convicted due to various offences including participation in demonstrations and unauthorised protests, possession of illegal material, rioting, etc. The youngest of those is ten years old.

Do you not see the complete disconnect between the two pictures? The crown prince laying the foundation stone for the future of 444 Bahraini families who hope to be productive and secure now that the promise of an abode is near, while sixty-five whole families now being raised with a deep hatred for the regime, and whose future is at best suspect. Children in prison for doing what they cannot possibly comprehend, but paying dearly for their future. No education, no compassion, just hate generated from a deep sense of injustice levied against them.


Shame on every Bahraini who condones such a un-compassionate and inconsiderate application of the law.

Instead of investing into changing these children’s and their environment’s prospects for the future, bringing them into a more equitable economic situation, we get the government entrenching their dire situation of poverty and ignorance. All under the guise of “teaching them a lesson”. The lesson that they’re “teaching” in this instance; however, is just hate. Hate that will traverse generations.

  • Coolred38
    17 January 2011

    In all the years I lived in Bahrain I never once saw the face of a Bahraini rapist, pedophile or killer in the newspaper (might have been there but I never saw one)…and not only is showing the face and naming a child “criminal” against the law in the states (no idea about Bahrain but apparently not) it is apparently more important we see these children’s faces and know them as “criminals” then to see the faces of true criminals among us.

    Please explain this..makes no sense to me.

    • mahmood
      17 January 2011

      Then you’ll love this one my friend:

      Jail term cut
      MANAMA: A Pakistani, who was earlier sen- tenced to five years in jail for raping a mentally- ill boy, had his sentence slashed to one year yesterday, reports BASMA MOHAMMED. Judges at the Supreme Criminal Appeals Court issued the verdict. The 15-year-old Bahraini’s father had earlier told police that the defendant, 28, raped his son, according to court documents. He claimed the boy’s sisters had found a dinar with him from an unknown source and noticed that his trousers were worn inside out. When asked, the boy said he was at a Pakistani labourer’s res- idence, where he raped him and gave him BD1.

      GDN front page · 17 Jan ’11

  • Robert
    17 January 2011

    I agree – how is it that convicted rapists and paedophiles are granted anonimity in Bahrain and yet 12 year old children are marked as terrorists (as if they could be for goodness sake) and their identities widely distributed.

  • Velvet Rose
    17 January 2011

    Sad… all this can be put under the title of discrimination and hatred towards the ultimate majority in this country!!!!

  • exclamation mark
    17 January 2011

    Its a third world country thing… We can buld sky scrapers, drive cars, fly aeroplanes … But not think and walk as normal people … its very hard !!

  • Ali Abdulla
    20 January 2011

    this just made me feel sick.. i currently live abroad with my girl friend, both of us studying in uni.ive been planning on coming back with her after tying the knot, if not permanently at least for a long visit.. but reading things like these really do make me think twice about returning to the country i grew up in for 18 years…

  • Omar bin Abdulaziz
    24 January 2011

    Mahmood, by copy-pasting the story of the expatriate criminal, what do you want to prove???

    Why don’t you even paste the story of the BAHRAINI child molester who was caught by his wife molesting his niece???

    Make good use of your pen and be just!!!

    As for these children, there should be a centre for juvenile delinquents.

    And when you say their environment should be bettered, then for that you need to do away with those mullahs who incite these children into bombing people on the streets.

    And for your myopic attention, even the US has such cases. Yeah the US you so worship for “human rights”.

    So don’t be “SURPRISED” and don’t blow things out of proportion.

    • mahmood
      24 January 2011

      Intrigued. Who’s the “expatriate criminal” might I ask?

      • Omar bin Abdulaziz
        24 January 2011

        The Pakistani dude that you have referred to as reply to the first reader.

        Do you forget what you right or is it a show off???

        I have seen only people in a mental asylum pull this kind of tricks.

        They are usually forgiven for being deranged.

        So I forgive you too!!!

  • Anonny
    24 January 2011


    Your experience of mental asylums is noted.

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