Raise a glass to Maria Ressa and Dmitry Muratov

If you are going to have a well-earned end of week glass tonight, raise it to Dmitri Muratov and Maria Ressa. For their levels of physical and moral courage are beyond anything that we at LSS could ever hope to equal, we confess. Their bravery has tried to keep alive the spirit of free independent journalism in the face of brutal, oppressive regimes as our link to The Guardian [1] shows. It has won them a Nobel Peace Prize; but that is small recompense for what they go through daily.

We will let one extract from the piece by Jon Henley and Rebecca Ratcliffe, which quotes the Nobel Citation, do the talking

Free, independent and fact-based journalism serves to protect against abuse of power, lies and war propaganda,” Reiss-Andersen said, praising the two journalists’ “courageous fight for freedom of expression, a precondition for democracy and lasting peace”.

You can say what you will about journalists, and some of the ones in certain British Tabloids are morally squalid, it’s true. But at their best, journalists are the first line of truth tellers. And if you suppress them, the next truth tellers in line will be scientists, engineers and doctors. In such societies, truth is traded for money and fear. Buildings fail, because no one can say the President’s brother has been dealing in defective steel and concrete. Hospitals close, because the Government cronies have looted all the drugs. The economy regresses as no one can trust official figures any more when they invest. And this is true for regimes of all types-Left Wing, Right Wing, Populist or Religious. You know the places we have in mind.

So if you are free enough to read this tonight, think what Dmitri and Maria must be living through. Guard your freedom-and remember how easily it can be stolen.

[1] https://www.theguardian.com/world/2021/oct/08/journalists-maria-ressa-and-dmitry-muratov-win-nobel-peace-prize

#nobel prize #freedom #free journalism #courage

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