A terrible pattern of governments trying to silence witnesses of government-related crime, while the big perpetrators go free, can be seen in many countries around the world. We have been sad to see some staggering examples lately of why an organization like Accoun needs to demand government accountability.
In Egypt, many hundred supporters of the overthrown president Mursi have recently been killed in the streets during the government’s brutal crackdowns. Last week, also a number of journalists witnessing the violence are reported to have been killed, detained, injured or threatened. However, the former dictator Hosni Mubarak, with much blood on his hands, is set free by a court. Among many other atrocities, Mubarak’s regime partnered with the USA to torture suspected terrorists, which have in some cases been found innocent afterwards.
Yesterday the US whistleblower Bradley Manning, who has revealed war crimes in Irak through Wikileaks, was sentenced to 35 years in prison. During the last months, we have also been able to follow the US government hunt for another whistleblower, Edward Snowden, who has exposed that NSA broke privacy laws thousands of times a year. The UK government has obviously been complicit in many of these crimes. A newspaper in the UK, the Guardian, have even reported that they were forced by their government to destroy documents leaked by Snowden, and thus to destroy possible evidence of government-related crime. Nobody else than Manning and Snowden have been held accountable, despite the serios crimes they have revealed.
These cases are unfortunately like the tip of an iceberg of government-related crime and dysfunctional legal systems, which are unacceptable. The public has reason to be very thankful to whistleblowers and reporters who dare to try to tell the truth, despite the harsh consequences it may have for them personally. Without these heroes, the situation would probably be even worse.