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Teddy Bear

I think the most alarming and insidious example of anti-American bias of the BBC was during the Katrina disaster. Even PM Blair remarked on it.

Teddy Bear

Off topic, but media related with the hope to get some action is the following:

The BBC like to vaunt kidnapped Alan Johnston as some kind of hero, when he was in fact a militant Muslim appeaser, as is the BBC itself, and because of his biased reportage felt he had little to worry about with regard to being abducted. Reports say he was in fact taken by a criminal gang, something akin to the Palestinian Mafia, and not by a praticular terrorist group.

Here is a story of a real journalist hero, a Muslim in Bangladash who wrote against the Islamists there, and was subsequently arrested and imprisoned and faces the death penalty.

What is scandalous is the lack of international media coverage of this man's ordeal, not a mention at all on the the whole of the BBC website, or international effort to free this man. The following appeal tells how the US Senate finance committee was supposed to have urged the Bangladash government to free him in exchange for trade preferences. They have now dropped this 'request'. I ask all US readers here to write your the members of the Senate committee, sample letter and addresses given below.

Also to forward this appeal to all you feel might take an interest and help.


Shoaib Choudhury is a Muslim journalist who resides in Bangladesh - a persistent and outspoken opponent of the Islamists, and advocate of human and religious rights.
Shoaib loves Israel and has urged the Bangladeshi government to recognize and establish diplomatic relations with Israel.

In 2003 Mr. Choudhury was arrested as he was about to board a flight from Bangladesh on his way to Tel Aviv to address a
writers' conference. He was charged with treason, sedition and blasphemy and spent the next 17 months in prison, and was tortured.

His Jewish friend in the U.S., Dr. Richard Benkin, worked tirelessly for Shoaib Choudhury's release. He found a friend in Congressman Mark Kirk, and they had intense
meetings with the Bangladeshi ambassador. Bangladesh released Shoaib because it wished to secure trade with the U.S. As part of the deal, Bangladesh was to free Shoaib and drop all charges against him, a demand which wasn't met.
Shoaib is still being threatened with a trial which carries a possible death sentence.

Mr. Choudhury has been offered asylum in the United States, Canada, Australia, Sweden and Denmark. He declined, stating
there was no honor in surrender, and that "Bangladesh is my country. Let the Islamists leave." Muslims who agree with
him watch what's happening to him, and their voices are now becoming audible as they draw courage from this man.

Mr. Choudhury received the Bangladesh Lokgeeti Shilpi Goshthi COURAGEOUS JOURNALISM AWARD 2005, PEN USA, FREEDOM
TO WRITE AWARD 2005, the American Jewish Committee, MORAL COURAGE AWARD-2006, the Bangladesh Minority Lawyer's Association MORAL COURAGE AWARD 2006, and the Jasimuddin
Memorial AWARD FOR JOURNALISM, April, 2007.

You can read more about him at:
http://interfaithstrength.com/

House Resolution 64 was passed (409-1) in March 2007, stating , in part: "Expressing the sense of the House of Representatives that the Government of Bangladesh should
immediately drop all pending charges against Bangladeshi journalist Salah Uddin Shoaib Choudhury. Whereas Salah Uddin Shoaib Choudhury is a Bangladeshi journalist who, because of his beliefs in interfaith dialogue between Jews
and Muslims and criticism of Islamic extremism, is on trial for sedition, an offense punishable by death;..."

SB-652, recently introduced, calls for extension of trade preferences with Bangladesh, but it has no provision to
ensure that all charges shall be dropped against Shoaib Choudhury.

Please see: http://interfaithstrength.com/images/SB-652.html

It would make a huge difference if the Senate Finance Committee members received inquiries from their constituents. Your letter or e-mail may well save this man's life. Below is a sample letter and contact
information.

Sample letter:

Dear ____________:

I am writing about Senate Bill 652, proposed by Senator Gordon Smith, and which you are co-sponsoring. The bill now rests with the Senate Finance Committee, and I wish to express strongly my opposition to the bill as it is now constituted. As you have shown consistently over many years
of public life, these trade benefits should not be given to the detriment of American interests.

One of the nations slated to benefit from SB652 is Bangladesh, which maintains a blatant disregard for an overwhelming and bi-partisan sense of the US Congress.
Bangladesh is home to Muslim journalist Salah Uddin Shoaib Choudhury who was imprisoned and tortured after exposing the
rise of radical Islam, advocating relations with Israel, and urging religious equality. Only after relentless efforts by Chicago area human rights advocate, Dr. Richard Benkin and US Congressman Mark Kirk did the Bangladeshis release Choudhury. They also promised to drop the charges against him.

But two years later, he still faces a trial for "sedition, treason, and blasphemy," which are capital offenses penalty for which is death. With active support from the US State Department and by a vote of 409-1, the US Congress recently called on the Bangladeshis to keep their promises and end their harassment of Salah Uddin Shoaib Choudhury.

The major reason why the Bangladeshis have gone as far as they have in releasing this courageous opponent of radical Islam, and not allowing him to be killed, is that they know they cannot get their coveted tariff relief as long as they continue persecuting him and other dissidents. SB652 threatens to undermine years of human rights efforts.

Please, Ms. Feinstein, insure that the bill does not leave the Senate Finance Committee without specific language that requires Bangladesh to take verifiable human rights action and to keep its promise to drop all charges and end all harassment against Salah Uddin Shoaib Choudhury. It is inconceivable that the US would award these coveted benefits to a country that remains actively in defiance of US policy.

You can get additional information on this case from Dr. Benkin (847-922-6426), who also is willing to testify to the Committee on this matter.

Respectfully,

-----------------------


The members of the Senate Finance Committee:

Arizona Senator Jon Kyl
Fax: (202) 224-2207
http://kyl.senate.gov/contact.cfm

Arkansas Senator Blanche Lincoln
http://lincoln.senate.gov/html/webform.html
Fax: (202) 228-1371

California Senator Diane Feinstein
http://feinstein.senate.gov/email.html
Fax: 202-228-3954

Colorado Senator Ken Salazar
http://salazar.senate.gov/contact/email.cfm
Washington, D.C. Office
Fax: (202) 228-5036
Denver Metro Office
Fax: (303) 455-8851

Idaho Senator Mike Crapo
http://crapo.senate.gov/contact/email.cfm
Fax: 202-228-1375

Iowa Senator Charles Grassley
http://grassley.senate.gov/index.cfm?FuseAction=Contact.Home
Fax: 202-224-6020

Kansas Senator Pat Roberts
http://roberts.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?FuseAction=Contac
tInformation.EmailPat
Fax: 202-224-3514

Kentucky Senator Jim Bunning
http://bunning.senate.gov/index.cfm?FuseAction=Contact.Email
Fax: 202-228-1373

Maine Senator Olympia Snowe
http://snowe.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?
FuseAction=ContactSenatorSnowe.Email
Fax: (202) 224-1946

Massachusetts Senator John Kerry
http://kerry.senate.gov/low/contact_email.html
Fax: 202-224-8525

Michigan Senator Debbie Stabenow
http://stabenow.senate.gov/email.htm
Fax: 202-228-0325

Mississippi Senator Trent Lott
http://lott.senate.gov/index.cfm?FuseAction=Contact.Email
Fax: (202) 224-2262

Missouri Senator Christopher Bond
http://bond.senate.gov/contact/contactme.cfm
Fax: 202-224-8149

Montana Senator Max Baucus
http://baucus.senate.gov/contact/emailForm.cfm?subj=issue
Fax: (202) 224-0515

New Mexico Senator Jeff Bingaman
senator_bingaman@bingaman.senate.gov
Fax: 202-224-2852

New York Senator Charles Schumer
http://schumer.senate.gov/SchumerWebsite/contact/webform.cfm
Fax: 202-228-3027

North Dakota Senator Kent Conrad
http://conrad.senate.gov/webform.html
Fax: (202) 224-7776

Oregon Senator Ron Wyden
http://wyden.senate.gov/contact/
Fax: 202-228-2717

Oregon Senator Gordon Smith
http://gsmith.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?FuseAction=Contact
.Home
Fax: 202.228.3997

Utah Senator Orin Hatch
http://hatch.senate.gov/index.cfm?FuseAction=Offices.Contact
Fax: (202) 224-6331

Washington Senator Maria Cantwell
http://cantwell.senate.gov/contact/index.cfm
Fax: 202-228-0514

West Virginia Senator John D. Rockefeller IV
http://rockefeller.senate.gov/services/email.cfm
Fax: (202) 228-5036

Wyoming Senator Craig Thomas
http://thomas.senate.gov/index.cfm?FuseAction=Contact.Home
Fax: 202-224-1724

Please send this message to everyone you think might be interested. Thank you very much.

Macacarena

You want to know why there's declining support for the US in its war on terrorism?

It's because Bush argues the invasion and occupation of Iraq is part of this war, and very few people trust this line of argument. The decline of support shows up in polls because many people around the world distrust Bush's motives, and frankly, it's hard to blame them. There is an overwhelming consensus that terrorism needs to be fought; but increasingly few people have any faith that Bush's policies are the right ones to do this.

The other issue I have is with the use of the term "anti-American(ism)". It is used by Bush and his supporters as a retort to people who disagree with American policy. It's a poisonous line of thinking, and someone in America has to take a stand against it.

There are genuine hard-core anti-Americans around the world, but they are few in number and easily made irrelevant. And it is on Americans firstly to start understanding that disagreement on their government policies does not amount to anti-Americanism. These are policy disagreements and Americans need to be clear-headed enough to recognize this.

I'm a South African living in London married to an American, so I really have no instinctive bias in this debate. But what I do find infuriating is the framing of people who disagree with Bush's policies as anti-American. As I said, it is poisonous in the extreme, and a site like this - if it is to affect positive change - would do well to be very judicious in how the phrase is used.

orthodoc

Re Macacarena,

Oh, for heaven's sake.

European anti-Americanism was alive and well before George Bush became President. Anyone with historical awareness greater than that of a tree squirrel can remember massive demonstrations against the evil American Pershing II missiles, the evil American "aggression" against the Soviets, the evil American tourists coming to Europe with their big wallets/voices/behinds/fill in the blank....

Running against the US has been a reliable vote-getter in Europe for two generations at least. It goes back in my own memory to Charles De Gaulle. In fact, it goes back to before American independence. So cut W a break here. This IS anti-Americanism, it's not new, and it's not a tag for anyone who disagrees with Bush.

As a first-generation American, I think it's terrific that Europeans are finally waking up to the paradox of decrying American hegemony and "meddling" while simultaneously bemoaning American "lack of involvement." I would point out that many in the US agree wholeheartedly with those who want Americans out of world affairs - but if we leave, we're probably not coming back to bail anyone out. If you want a nice example of how well Europe will manage, take a look at the Balkans. Terrific job on that Serb thing - Milosevic really paid for his crimes, hey?

Macacarena

Orthodoc,

I am not denying that anti-Americanism exists. I make that very clear in my post.

But the rest of your post rather suggests you have difficulty drawing a distinction between anti-Americanism and being anti certain American policy. For exmple, I won't cut Bush a break on Iraq - I deeply disagree with the doctrine of preventative war, and I believe the occupation has been criminally mismanaged. I don't regard this as an anti-American view, and equally I won't regard it as anti-South Africanism or anti-Europeanism if you disagreed with me.

And listen, that "paradox" you highlight can be resolved in your mind by understanding that Europeans generally agree with American interventionism when they agree with the cause. It's no more complicated than that.

To prove my point: look at the Lindberg study. Look at when European support for America starts to decline - after 2002. The Iraq War is the only reasonable explanation for this; a specific policy decision, not some abstract shift in attitudes towards America.

With your silly Milosevic jab - the guy was ousted from power by his own people and died in custody - seems you aren't really very serious about repairing relations with Europe. I am hoping America votes in a President who is.

Teddy Bear

Re: You want to know why there's declining support for the US in its war on terrorism?

It's because Bush argues the invasion and occupation of Iraq is part of this war, and very few people trust this line of argument.

It's because the leftwing media do the 'thinking' for most people, who readily adopt the 'opinions' put before them without ANY independant research or conclusions. It's because this conflict DOES hurt the militant Muslim world is why they are putting so much pressure or sweeteners on the media to maintain their misrepresentation of this war.

Kevin Sampson

And listen, that "paradox" you highlight can be resolved in your mind by understanding that Europeans generally agree with American interventionism when they agree with the cause. It's no more complicated than that.”

If you have a cause that you think warrants intervention, why not intervene yourselves?

Beth

Macacarena,

I travel through Europe every year and encounter Anti-Americanism every trip. To say that they are few in number is not entirely true. While I love Europe, I am attacked every year by those who hate Bush and America. On my annual journey across the continent, once I am identified, I am bludgeoned by hostility as though I personally got President Bush elected and am responsible for all the world's problems. Now, to be fair, all of these “experts in blame” have been under the age of 30. So far.

While I never let it interfere with my trip, it is most bewildering to me when I consider my behavior were these people in my homeland. It would simply never occur to me to insult someone, their country and their leaders while they were visiting America. It would be extremely poor form. Obnoxious and offensive, really. So I still can't grasp the reason why many Europeans feel so comfortable approaching total strangers and berating them in such a mean-spirited manner. Perhaps the club/cafe setting just brings that out of them.

Along with this hateful attitude is a pervasive mindset that somehow it is the sole responsibility of America to repair the U.S./European relationship. As though Europe bears no accountability in the matter. This attitude carries over into nearly every other issue. If there is something wrong, America is to blame for it, and America must fix it. This is why many Americans see Europe precisely the way Europe sees America; as behaving like an immature, spoiled child.

Steevo

"It would simply never occur to me to insult someone, their country and their leaders while they were visiting America. It would be extremely poor form. Obnoxious and offensive, really."

I know. That is what prejudice is. Europeans I see here in Washington State always look comfortable, enjoying themselves with no sign of ill treatment from us residents. If anything people go out of their way to be considerate.

Teddy Bear

Beth, if it's any consolation what you're really witnessing is fear and ignorance compounded especially by the media and slimy politicians.

Eventually the truth will out, and eyes will be opened.

David Bodden

Here is another example of biased anti-American BBC coverage for you.
On the BBC website there is a story about US H-1B visa abuse with this on the front page

"Ticket to riches
Indian workers love US visas - but is the US playing fair? "

Story link: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/default.stm

“Is the US playing fair” – real story: two senators are asking questions of Indian companies to see if THEY are playing fair.

More information on senators http://www.senate.gov/~durbin/record.cfm?id=274241

The abuse is even worse in the UK as there are links between the outsourcing companies and the governing Labour party.

David Bodden

correct link to story http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/6682743.stm

Teddy Bear

David, they appear to have lost that line from their page now. Maybe they read your post.

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It's because the left wing media do the 'thinking' for most people, who readily adopt the 'opinions' put before them without ANY independent research or conclusions.

James Ferris

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I also learned that BBC is the largest broadcaster in the world, having about 23,000 employees.

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