SHAFAQNA – This Tuesday The Independent published an article in which it articulates once more al-Nimr’s family agony over the imprisonment of Ali Mohammed al-Nimr – nephew to late Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr.
While the article might come across as sympathetic to the naked eye, the author’s subversively painted Ali al-Nimr as a political dissident, whose fate it is implied, was somewhat brought upon by his own actions and choices … thus playing directly into Riyadh’s vulgar legal narrative.
Ali Mohammed was a child when he was arrested – 16-years old, and as such he could not have possibly formulated any political convictions of his own … at least not according to the law. Labelling him a dissident, a word which carries negative connotation since it insidiously presumes violence is downright criminal at this stage.
Ali Mohammed was a child when he was arrested, a child still when he was brutalized by Riyadh security services and yes, a child when he was sentenced to death over a confession he signed under duress.
Any insinuation on the part of The Independent only serves those powers which yearn to legitimize their brutality.
But here is where the story behind the story really oversteps the boundaries of the acceptable.
The Independent willingly and purposely used a picture of Mohammed al-Nimr – Sheikh al-Nimr’s eldest son, to accompany its piece on Ali Mohammed. Why do that? Why lead readers to assume that the man on picture is non-other than the man talked about in the article?
One theory would be that the journalist failed to do her homework …unlikely I think since we are talking about The Independent here!
Another, more likely answer would be that The Independent wanted to mislead readers as to the youth of Ali Mohammed, while linking Mohammed to the concept of dissidence against Saudi Arabia.
Pretty despicable and reprehensible if you ask me …
A child’s life stands in the balance. Why attempt to stir controversy as millions prepare to celebrate Sheikh al-Nimr’s Arbaeen? (religious commemoration held in Islam 40 days after a death)
Why not on principle reject religious oppression and repression? Or is it that al-Saud’s pockets carry far and wide those days … so far indeed that journalists in the UK feel compelled to play “the game” regardless of the consequences?
“A young protester who was reportedly forced to admit to crimes after being tortured when he was a teenager could be beheaded in the coming days,” wrote Kayleigh Lewis. Ali was not a protester, he was a CHILD.
Riddled with double-entendre, this one article is masterfully deceitful.
Exploiting the grief of a people to make a headline goes beyond the pale.
By Catherine Shakdam for Shafaqna