There was a time when double digit percentages of the Bahraini population were on the streets, demanding free elections and an end to the monarchy. During that time protesters were communicating with one another via Facebook and other online services.
Seven months later the protests are over, and President Obama is loudly cheering the Bahraini monarchy for promising “reforms.” Their next reform: finding all those people who were posting on Facebook and arresting them as dissidents.
Why the sudden interest in mass arresting Shi’ite dissidents? The answer is the upcoming parliamentary elections, which are aimed at replacing every single Shi’ite MP after they all resigned in protest during the crackdowns.
With so many taking part in the protests, most of Bahrain’s Shi’ite majority faces an uncertain future, as another school year is starting and many university students are still expelled for off-campus protests, despite promises from the monarchy to “forgive” them.
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