China is cracking down on the media and just denied renewal of press credentials for Al Jazeera English. What is up? Apparently China is not happy with some Al Jazeera reporting. (See today’s NYT)
Why do I post this? First, they did some tv blackouts last week when they were unhappy with reports about the dissident (I was told they blocked one of OTR broadcasts when Ambassador John Bolton discussed it…although I can’t verify and I did not know our broadcasts were in China…)
Secondly this is a bad sign and a big step backwards for freedom (not that there is freedom now.) A country fearing a free press is a really bad sign for the people. You may find the media annoying from time to time (or even often) but a free press is very important. Of course China has not had a free press but the hope was that it was moving in that direction….well, any forward movement has been stopped and it now looks like it is going backwards.