Bahrain, unlike other countries witnessing revolution, is an interesting case in point. It’s not only about protestors and their voice, the opposition is present in equal numbers and then there are the neutrals who raise questions on the acts of both.
Follow reports on Bahrain via social media and you’ll witness a sea of response, with warring groups at loggerheads and neutrals upping the ante against both. For outsiders it’s difficult to form a viewpoint following the social media reports.
Ever since WeSpeakNews aired the interview with Human rights campaigner Nabeel Rajab, the newsroom has been steadily getting comments and tweets from the so called rivals who don’t adhere to what Rajab says.
In our bid to get a holistic picture of what the current situation is in Bahrain and what do the people feel about the regimen, its politics and revolution we asked respondents to send their views.
Here’s what the people say about the regimen and not all are anti regimen.
Tweeple @naslowaidi who identifies herself as one who was never interested in politics until it hit home. Now determined to help bring Bahrain back to her former glory puts her views across via twitter as, “We all agree on reform the only difference is that we want to keep the same government. It has brought Bahrain to this level of advancement in record time bringing it second to Dubai in economic reforms.”
She adds, “Politically, we are the first in the GCC to have an elected body with women voting and able to run for office. Bahrain tops Arab countries with so called democracy in the transparency of its process and legitimacy of its application. ”
Not just that there are some more positives that emerge, Varghese Koshy, who tweets as @TheVvsbond says, “Bahrain enjoys great record in terms of freedom of worship. There are Churches, Temples, Gurudwaras, Synagogues to cater for all. When there are civil liberties, subsidies, great quality of life then you will agree the motive for a revolution is highly suspect. If you go with the premise that the basis for any civil movement is a dissatisfied mass then in #Bahrain there is a dichotomy, on one hand there is economic growth and benefit for all and on the other movement to overthrow a functioning government.”
Views like above give some credibility to the work of the government. But the protestors have their view point.
Amoory Rezavi who tweets as @AamirRiz82 says, “Bahrain government doesn’t want any reform, they are mercenaries to break the protest. Government is killing people. Police in Bahrain are firing teargas at the funeral procession of Salma Mohsen, who died from police tear gas yesterday.”
Videos go viral by the minute with #Bahrain, and both pro and anti government groups push their agenda using ‘hashtags’ and messages like “After watching following video about #Bahrain gave us your opinion please” are common practise.
Neutrals who don’t agree with the violent way protestors are using too have their questions for the regimen. @naslowaidi asks, “Setting all our economic and political achievements aside, many of us are wary of foreign agendas striving to intrude on Bahrain’s affairs. We note strong support from Iran and Hezbollah leadership and their insistence on turning this conflict into a sectarian civil war. We worry that they are trying to gain control over Bahrain through organized militias especially recently when we saw pictures of assemblies. ”
She furthers, ” And since their objectives have been decades in the making with proven historical affiliation to the Islamic Front for the Liberation of bah. It makes us wonder what they have planned for the next phase if they were to achieve their objective.”
Questioning the mode of operation of protestors Varghese Koshy says, “The methodology used by the protestors was interesting. Choke and kill the economy which revolves around banking and finance. The other method used was a pre programmed and primed media spreading misinformation. So much so we residents were shocked. They (protestors) also took over the main hospital. Used it as a PR centre violating all ethics governing free access for all. One of the main targets were the expats. Many were beaten up badly including my help who left the country scared and bruised. Most expats were being told to leave or else. Being the largest single population and voiceless It was scary for most part.”
He adds, “The government after almost a month of talks decided to put an end to this debilitating stand that destroyed the economy and GDP.” Koshy strongly condemns the use of children in the protests and in his further tweets says, “Kids who are instigated and paid while adults sit at home and watch. These kids who should be in school are inculcated in hate and are destroying their lives for the sake of famous vested interests.”
The fight over policy and modes of protest apart the sectarian angle can’t be ruled out. May paint it as a fight between the Shia and Sunni sects.
Koshy says, “#Bahrain movement was a Shia sectarian supremacy battle under cover of prodemocracy Arab spring and to overthrow the Sunni regime. It cannot be denied that some of the richest people in Bahrain are Shia. Very educated too all funded by government. With no taxes, free health care, education, subsidies on flour, meat, petrol etc.”
Blogger M. K. Al-Binateej, who tweets as @ATEEKSTER adds to this Shia – Sunni clash, “You should also understand the Shia religion. They believe they are destined to feel oppressed & unjustified until the coming of the Mahdi. To Shias, Mahdi is their long awaited prophet who would rescue them from their oppression and injustice. They believe that they should always feel oppressed and unjustified. Only the Mahdi has the power to release them of this oppression. You see, it’s a little difficult when it comes to Shias. Not to mention they have to obey their clerics. However, Sunnis don’t believe they should follow anyone they don’t want to. Also, they have freedom to except of reject Sunni clerics orders.”
The cry for reforms amidst violence is complicated further by the sectarian card and hence the polarised views.
Couple of thoughts emerge firstly @naslowaidi points out, “I believe this fight is for survival of the fittest. While we aim to sustain and build what we have they aim to break it all apart.” Secondly @AamirRiz82 asks, “Why are the US condemning Syria and supporting Bahraini dictators?”
If you have any point of view on the above topic please feel free to chip in at firstname.lastname@example.org or @wespeaknews