No mercy for Qatari poet

Mohammed Al-Ajami has spent two years in solitary confinement for reciting a poem in support of the Arab uprisings on Youtube. His sentence of 15 years in prison for reading a poem was recently upheld by the Qatar courts.  Read more here:


Those who read this blog on a regular basis know of our support of Al-Ajami who was first sentenced to life in prison.  His only option now is a direct appeal to the Emir.

Our previous posts:

The Poem

Mohammed al-Ajami 

We are all Tunisians (Tunisian Jasmine)

Mr. Prime Minister Mohamed al-Ghannoushi

You don’t hold constitutional power

We don’t wax nostalgic for Ben Ali or his times

For us that’s past history

The dictatorship of a despotic and oppressive regime

Against which the people have raised their revolutionary voice

We only criticize the disgrace and the horror

And when we praise somebody it’s only because of our personal convictions

Oh revolutionary hail the struggle with the blood of the people

Carve the value of rebellion in the soul of the free

And tell those who are holding their shroud

That every victory bears its ordeals

Ah, when shall it be the turn of that country whose foolish king

Believes he can rely on the American military

Ah, when shall it be the turn of the country whose people are empty bellied

While its government time and again praises the growth of finance?

Ah, when shall it be the turn of the country where you go to sleep a citizen

And you wake up stateless the next morning?

Ah, when shall it be the turn of that repressive and hereditary regime?

Until when shall you remain a slave to selfishness?

Until when shall the people remain unaware of its value

And fail to choose its own government?

Enough with tyrannical regimes!

Tell the one who torment his people

That tomorrow someone else will take his place

He should not rest assured that the country belongs to him or his offspring

Because the country belongs to the people and so does glory

Join your voices in a chorus for a single destiny

We are all Tunisian in the face of repression

Governments and Arab governments

Are all- without exception

A gang of thieves.

And there is a question that rings obsessively in the minds of those who wonder

But shall never be answered by the official sources:

If we import all kinds of things from the West

Why can’t we import freedom and the rule of law?


One response to “No mercy for Qatari poet

  1. David P. Kozinski

    It is remarkable how terrified the powerful can be of words spoken freely. A 15-year sentence for saying anything, whether it be a call for justice or the revelation of information kept secret by a government from its people, is grotesque and out of proportion. Circulating news like this is a real service on the part of FCR!

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