What I Learned in the Airport in Bahrain

Bahrain International Airport - When I came to Bahrain, it certainly wasn't with the intention of spending my whole time in the country in the airport. I wanted to see what was going on in the country, not to see what was going on in the airport.


But the Bahrain authorities would not let me enter the country. At this writing, it's 5 PM local time. My flight got in at 2:15 AM. I have been informed that the Director of Immigration has decided that I shall not have a visa to enter Bahrain - although in the past it was the practice of the Bahrain authorities to give visas to Americans in the airport pretty much automatically - so the authorities are saying that the only way I am leaving the airport is on a plane out of the country. At this writing, it looks like I could be in the airport for another 36 hours.


Other observers managed to get in, and you can see their reports at Witness Bahrain. [You can't see that website if you live in Bahrain though - it's blocked here by the Bahrain authorities.] But if you're in the U.S., you can read reports on Witness Bahrain on the protests marking the first anniversary of the uprising for democracy, and the Bahrain government's response to those protests. I won't be able to contribute to those reports, since, sitting in the airport, I won't be able to observe the protests and the government response.


However, I did learn something useful, sitting in the airport, waiting with a bunch of other foreigners for permission to enter the country.


I learned that the government of Bahrain is starting to pay a real price for its efforts to shield its actions towards peaceful protesters from international scrutiny.


In its efforts to keep people like me out - people who want to observe how the Bahrain government is responding to peaceful protests - the Bahrain government has adopted a policy of suspicion towards a much broader group of Westerners. And that's going to hurt the Bahrain government's image among a much broader group of people than just people like me. It will hurt the willingness of tourists and business people to come to Bahrain.


I saw a bunch of very irate British people this morning who said they had been invited by Bahrain's oil company to give a marketing presentation. They said they were late to their meeting, because the Bahrain authorities would not let them out of the airport. One of them started saying, very loudly, "I don't even want to be here."


A saw an English woman say: I've been here before, it's never been like this.


I saw a bunch of Spaniards who said they came for a conference, one of whom said he was supposed to make a presentation. They could not get out of the airport. They were also very irate.


I also saw an AP journalist who could not get out of the airport.


When I saw how people who "just came for business" couldn't get in and were getting irate with the government of Bahrain, it gave me some consolation. It made me think that my being here had some small utility, even if I didn't get to leave the airport. The willingness of folks like me to show up in response to the call from Bahrainis for observers provoked the Bahrain government to show its face to a broader group of people. It showed that the monarchy in Bahrain can't have it both ways - open for business, but not open for observation.


The monarchy in Bahrain, like the military government in Egypt, seems to have a love-hate relationship with America. They love America's weapons. But they don't want Americans to see how they treat protesters who are struggling for democracy, and they don't want Americans to say anything about it.


But it's a package deal. Roll out the red carpet for the Americans who want to give you weapons, and the Americans who don't want you to shoot protesters are going to have their say as well.


For decades, the U.S. government has backed tyrants in the Arab world at the expense of the majorities ruled over by the tyrants. The promise of the Arab Spring for U.S. foreign policy is that U.S. policy could change. Hosni Mubarak was the best buddy of the U.S. government, until he wasn't, because Americans saw on their TV screens Egyptians protesting and being attacked by Mubarak's thugs and the U.S. policy of being best buddies with Mubarak could no longer be defended in front of U.S. public opinion.


This change could happen in Bahrain, if we could raise the profile in the U.S. of what is happening there.


People have all kinds of excuses for why the U.S. policy of coddling the Bahrain government can't change. The U.S. has a military base in Bahrain, so U.S. policy can't change. Bahrain is a "bulwark" against Iran, so U.S. policy can't change. The U.S. can't afford to offend Saudi Arabia, so U.S. policy can't change.


But Hosni Mubarak's Egypt was a "bulwark" against Iran - a much, much bigger "bulwark" than Bahrain - and under public pressure, the U.S. cut him loose. Saudi Arabia was offended when the U.S. cut Mubarak loose, but the U.S. cut Mubarak loose anyway.


And we don't need the base. A year ago - when the U.S. was still speaking up with a bit of vigor about human rights in Bahrain, before the Obama Administration adopted its current policy of quiet - a report in the New York Times called the base "mainly a matter of convenience" for the U.S. Navy.


The U.S. government could speak openly and directly about what is going on in Bahrain, and the sky wouldn't fall. But it might be "inconvenient." So the U.S. government is not going to speak openly and directly, unless there is some real public pressure.


A good place to start: we should demand that the U.S. press the Bahrain government not to block international observers from entering the country. And we should demand that the U.S. not send any more weapons to Bahrain until the Bahrain government stops suppressing peaceful protests with violence. Robert Naiman is Policy Director at Just Foreign Policy.

I am often to blogging and i actually appreciate your content.
The article has actually peaks my interest. I am going to bookmark your site and keep checking for new

men ray ban sunglasses ray ban wayfarer large oakley shades ray ban stock oakley radar path sunglasses ray ban for girls ray ban sunglasses size classic ray ban oakley retail stores gold ray ban sunglasses discount ray bans wayfarer fuel cell oakley returning ray ban sunglasses imitation ray bans cheap oakley gascan sunglasses oakley split thump ray ban 4098 ray ban sunglasses discount oakley aviators oakley fives polarized oakley snowboard pants oakley sunglasses contact ray ban sunglasses shop online ray ban lenses ray ban predator cheap ray ban aviator ray ban aviator cheap oakley outlet sunglasses oakley plaintiff polarized oakley tightrope polarized ray bans on sale aviator ray ban aviators sale oakley capacitor new oakleys ray ban sunglasses 3386 ray ban outlet usa ray ban matte sunglasses oakley luggage ray ban sale outlet ray ban sunglasses for sale womens ray ban aviators ray ban coupon codes oakley titanium customized oakleys oakley nanowire 2.0 ray ban 52mm ray bans outlet store ray ban outlets ray ban wayfarer black lens oakley sunglasses coupons ray ban sun glasses ray bans sunglasses ray ban outlet camarillo meteor ray ban oakley eyeglasses frames rx ray ban sunglasses ray bans sunglasses clubmaster ray ban wayfarer white oakley prescription eyewear http://www.oakleysunglasses.us.com/ ray ban classic sunglasses oakley goggles cheap oakley felon sunglasses buy fake ray bans oakley stores oakley outlet store oakley jawbone review oakley gascans ray ban sunglasses aviators glasses ray bans oakley lens ray ban eyeglasses for women 2013 ray ban mirror ray ban small aviators oakley factory oakley fuel cells customize oakleys oakley sunglasses for men clear oakley sunglasses ray ban tech ray ban outlet sunglasses ray ban 2132 oakley half x oakley radar lenses ray bans price ray ban sunglasses 2013 ray ban girls sunglasses ray ban cheap wayfarer custom oakleys classic ray ban aviator sunglasses ray ban wayfarer mens origina l ray ban sunglasses is there a ray ban outlet where can i buy ray bans cheap ray ban replacement temples oakley fives squared ray ban sunglasses foldable vintage oakley sunglasses ray ban sunglasses aviator small oakley rx sunglasses leather coach coach poppy handbags coach purses outlet sale coach purse outlet stores coach wallets cheap nearest coach outlet store coach outlet albertville baby coach coach pocketbooks outlet outlet coach bags coach factory outlet stores online coach outline online anthem coach outlet coach factory sale official coach outlet store coach swingpack coach outlet concord mills coach outlet on coach factory outlet store online sale coach boots outlet coach baby bag coach outlet new york coach outlet potomac mills coach handbags sale coach handbags clearance coach outlet myrtle beach coach leather purse coach puses bag coach coach factory outlet online coach new coach coach e.coach.com coach outlet purses online coach locations business coaching certification career coach coach sale handbags coaching styles coach men shoes coach sales coach factory site coach shoes for women coach outlet limerick pa coach coach outlet online coach oulet coach outlet store coupon coach on sale coach gloves what is a life coach coach backpack purse coach outlets online shopping coach swingpack sale coach handbag outlets coach outlet online reviews coach shoes outlet coach knockoffs coach outlet online authentic coach messenger bag online coach factory poppy coach bags coach outlet handbag discontinued coach purses coach bags outlet online coach outlet houston sports coach official coach factory outlet store online coach designer handbags coach bag sale coach outlet ellenton spiritual coaching coach watches outlet life coach nyc discount coach purses outlet coach outlet canada online personal life coach coach outlet howell coach outlet auburn coach shoulder bag coach wallets for men coach handbags clearance sale coach shoes clearance leadership coaching coaching books coach knockoff purses health coaching coach outlet store near me coach leather handbags baby bags coach coach outlet in coach brand coach outlet great lakes crossing coach and coach factory coach catalog request coach warranty policy coach dog carrier mens coach outlet coach outlet cheap shoes coach outlet coach totes louis vuitton key holder louis vuitton hobo outlet for louis vuitton bags louis vuitton factory outlet online store louis vuitton tote bags buy authentic louis vuitton bags online louis vuitton purses on sale overstock louis vuitton pink louis vuitton bag louis vuitton outlet sale online louis vuitton outlet official reviews buy used louis vuitton louis vuitton mens shirts louis vuitton outlet discount louis vuitton diaper bag louis vuitton clothing for men purse louis vuitton black louis vuitton where are the louis vuitton outlet stores louis vuitton sale bags louis vuitton outlet authentic bags cheap authentic louis vuitton bags louis vuitton luxury handbags artsy mm louis vuitton louis vuitton discount website louis vuitton handbags outlet usa louis vuitton wristlets louis vuitton murakami pre owned louis vuitton purses louis vuitton bucket hat louis vuitton bow tie second hand louis vuitton louis vuitton belts for men luxury louis vuitton outlet louis vuitton sneakers men are there louis vuitton outlet stores louis vuitton official outlet louis vuitton credit card holder louis vuitton shoes for men louis vuitton.com louis vuitton authentic outlet store louis vuitton for sale cheap louis vuitton outlet louis vuitton outlet louis vuitton watch where to buy louis vuitton handbags consignment louis vuitton louis vuitton bloomsbury louis vuitton never full louis vuitton outlet website louis vuitton wallet outlet online louis vuitton handbags sale louis vuitton outlet ? what is the most popular louis vuitton bag shop louis vuitton online louis vuitton macy s louis vuitton belts mens louis vuitton black bag louis vuitton designer louis vuitton totally pm louis vuitton repair louis vuitton men shoes louis vuitton shoes women louis vuitton sunglasses for men where can i buy used louis vuitton bags louis vuitton canada louis vuitton handbags louis vuitton authentic louis vuitton sunglasses louis vuitton speedy bags vintage louis vuitton louis vuitton alma mm louis vuitton bathing suits discount authentic louis vuitton louis vuitton bags used authentic louis vuitton handbag sale louis vuitton outlet louis vuitton wholesale louis vuitton mahina xl real louis vuitton bags cheap louis vuitton owner louis vuitton outlets online louis vuitton stores louis vuitton australia outlet louis vuitton sale handbags louis vuitton wiki c learance louis vuitton where to buy cheap louis vuitton louis vuitton outlet chicago louis vuitton business card holder sale louis vuitton handbags louis vuitton trunks discount louis vuitton purses handbags louis vuitton strap louis vuitton handbags outlets louis vuitton dresses louis vuitton clothing men where can i buy a louis vuitton how to know a louis vuitton bag is real louis vuitton dust bag louis vuitton outlet cabazon reviews louis vuitton outlet [linlei0319] coach outlet tulare

Post new comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
  • No HTML tags allowed
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.

More information about formatting options

This question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.
Enter the characters shown in the image.