Monday, March 31, 2008

Afghanistan—Democratic Constitution But Authoritarian Rule (Report)

The traditions and customs of Afghanistan have had several clashes with the implementation of superficial freedom of speech, namely guaranteed in the democratic constitution of the country.
Media men have been attacked up on by the conservative MPs, Islamic clerics and the country’s Attorney General to name a few. Bureaucracy still is commonly practiced in the Afghan government. Certain rules make no sense, but media organizations are forced to implement.

Native language
Funny cases like using a Farsi word in national TV stations enflames high debates, not only among the MPs in the Afghan Parliament, but also among scholars abroad for days and weeks.

Lately, Tolo TV station aired scenes of dancing men and women in movie award ceremony in Kabul. It was highly criticized by the MPs, minister of information and culture and many more. The sarcastic point is that Tolo, as a member of media, has to inform public about the reality of the country. The medium is obliged by the ethical guidelines of the field to air such shows; to depict the ongoing reality in so called cultural events inside the country and to inform people about it. That is what such media are supposed to be for. But the bureaucrats in the Afghan government are strongly opposed to such acts.

Do we have freedom of speech?
If speaking one’s native language is a crime, if researching about Islam is crime, if reflecting the reality is crime, if talking about warlords and corruption is crime, then what kind of freedom of speech do we have in our constitution, if we have it at all?

Click on the headline and read the report about Tolo airing the dancing scene.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey salam. Good job. But very short. I think you wrote this very quickly. You could add to it little more.

Talk to you later, hey let me know as soon as you get your passport.


5:50 AM  

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