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August 23, 2005



Let me add one thing about the press in Yemen. I mentioned Nabil as an envelope-pusher, but he's by no means alone. Yemen has responded very differently, on the whole, than places with heavy restriction and intimidation, like Egypt or Syria. Yemenis to the man get pissed off by such attempts to curtail their liberty, and incur great personal risks for this. Al-Khaiwani, who was only recently released from prison by presidential fiat, is back on the beat, speaking out pretty much as loudly as he did before. When my article was translated and published in Yemen (without my permission), I was really scared for a number of the people whom I'd quoted by name, especially Nabil. Once I got back to Sana'a, he was quick to say that he's said all the same in print himself, no worries.

I am embolded and inspired by the daily courage of the Yemeni media. Even while I criticize the journalistic irresponsibility of some, the overwhelming majority are doing their level best to stick it to The Man every week. I can't wait to see how this is covered in tomorrow's papers.

*Oh, yeah, and Abu: thanks for making me check the spelling of the guy's name - I just had lunch with him once in February, and Yemen's very much a first-name-and-job-title place, so I got a little sloppy.

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