"Chanting 'down with the dictator' could lead to your being subjected to electric shocks."
"Giving a speech about human rights and democracy can lead to life imprisonment."
"Infants died after suffocating from toxic gases used by riot police."
"Teenage protesters have been shot and killed."
Many Bahraini families have multiple members imprisoned.
"My father, Abdulhadi, was beaten unconscious in my apartment in front of my family."
"He was taken away with my husband and brother-in-law. They were all tortured" and imprisoned.
"My husband was released in January. My brother-in-law was released after a six-month sentence in late 2011. My father was sentenced to life in prison."- Advertisement -
"He staged four hunger strikes." One lasted 110 days. He almost died. He was painfully force-fed.
Despite enormous sacrifices, freedom struggles face long odds. Al Khalifa despots have powerful allies. Washington, Britain, Saudi Arabia, and others provide support.
Bahrainis see little difference between American and Saudi brutes. They're concerned only about their own self-interest. They deplore democracy. They crush it when emerges.
American double standards are especially galling. Washington abhors human rights it claims to support. It condemns regional violence. It turns a blind eye to horrific Bahraini crimes against humanity.
It fully supports its regional ally. Double standard duplicity "cost(s) America its credibility across the region." It's understood that "if you are an ally of America, then you can get away" with murder and other human rights abuses.
Al Khalifa despots believe they have international immunity. They commit "widespread human rights violations." They conduct business as usual.
They buy arms and negotiate lucrative deals. They govern with impunity. Bahrain's best languish in prison. Change remains a distant hope.