Category - Free Speech News

1
Turkish Journalist Can Dundar Sentenced to Five Years Hours After Failed Assassination Attempt
2
Palestinian Law Student Creates Controversy With “Smelly” Remark to Israeli Dignitary
3
Political Satire in Germany: A Win for the Rule of Law, A Loss for Free Speech
4
Opening the Door to Free Speech in China
5
Former Greece Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis Argues for a Reunification of Politics and Economics
6
Rape is a Crime, Even in War
7
The Rebirth of Cuban Free Speech
8
A Chance at Change
9
Free Speech Under Threat in South Africa With Introduction of “Protection of State Information Bill”
10
Raif Badawi Wins the Freedom to Publish Prize

Palestinian Law Student Creates Controversy With “Smelly” Remark to Israeli Dignitary

During Harvard Law’s panel discussion “The Israeli-Palestinian Conflict and the U.S.,” third-year Palestinian law student Husam El-Qoulaq inquired of visiting Israeli dignitary Tzipi Livni, “how is it that you are so smelly?” He added, “It’s regarding your odor, very smelly.” Many spectators including Law School Dean Martha L. Minow immediately rose to condemn the comment’s alleged anti-Semitic undertone. Others in the room rose in defense of El-Qoulaq’s right to Free Speech.

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Political Satire in Germany: A Win for the Rule of Law, A Loss for Free Speech

In an attempt at pushing the boundaries of Free Speech in Germany, Böhermann wrote his own satirical poem about the prime minister complete with references to the size of his private parts, his alleged fascination with child pornography, and his actions against the Kurdish minority group of Turkey’s northern border regions. In response, Erdogan called for the prosecution of Böhermann, one of Germany’s most popular comedians.

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Opening the Door to Free Speech in China

Deng Xiaoping’s 1978 Open Door Policy opened China’s markets in the hopes that international trade would produce a level of modernity comparable to that of the West. China’s growth has increased exponentially since its market opening. But with the lessons of the failed USSR, Deng Xiaoping understood that extreme measures must be taken to ensure his Open Door Policy did not open the sequential door to Freedom Speech and the Rule of Law.

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Former Greece Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis Argues for a Reunification of Politics and Economics

Varoufakis says the separation of the economic from the political sphere is a process that was begun decades ago, and “like a population of predators that are so successful in decimating the prey they must feed on that in the end they starve, similarly the economic sphere has been colonizing and cannibalizing the political sphere to such an extent that it is undermining itself causing economic crisis.”

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A Chance at Change

In criticizing Cuba’s long history of repression, Obama took a major risk, one that had the potential to destroy the renewed relationship only hours after setting foot on Cuban soil. Next month President Obama will visit Saudi Arabia where he will have the opportunity to denounce the continued human rights abuses of the House of Saud.

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Free Speech Under Threat in South Africa With Introduction of “Protection of State Information Bill”

The bill proposed by the ruling African National Congress (ANC) party aims to regulate the protection of state information. Were the bill to become law, it would allow any level of government, from federal to state to municipal, to classify any document as secret. It would also create mandatory prison sentences for whistleblowers who release the contents of so-called “secret documents.” The bill was drawn up in response to “increased threats” to South African national security.

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