Tariq Biasi is a blogger who had the misfortune of leaving a comment on a public website that the authorities deemed too critical of the government. He lost his freedom as a consequence. He is not the first and unfortunately will not be the last to lose his freedom for peacefully expressing their opinion.
- Here is Ayman Haykal's post on the topic (in Arabic)
- And here is Golaniya's extensive post on Tariq and other prisoners in English.
The Syrian regime's chokehold on its citizens' right to express themselves is unrelenting. Whether our expressions of outrage on the web really matter is highly debatable. The government knows that organized internal opposition, if present, is impotent. In addition, Syrian opposition outside is missing in action. They could care less about Western condemnations of their human rights records because they know that Western powers seem to care about the average Syrian only when it is politically expedient. The regime knows what buttons to push to get the pressure off their backs; it is a game that the Baathist regime has perfected over a span of two generations.
I despair...Real political reform in nowhere on the horizon.