New York City — A nationwide organization of freelance journalists, book writers and authors recently expressed outrage in the recent terrorist attacks in various parts of the world.
In a press statement, the National Writers Union (NWU) condemned the brutal terrorist attacks that took place in Paris on November 13. It also condemned the similar attacks that took place in Beirut on November 11, at a funeral in Baghdad the previous week, and the bombing of the Russian commercial flight traveling from Sharm al-Sheikh to Saint Petersburg.
According to NWU chairperson Larry Goldbetter, “The terrorist bombings in Beirut and Baghdad got little to no mainstream press coverage and no Facebook flag filters. These cowardly attacks are aimed at unarmed civilians, most of whom are Muslims living in Syria, Iraq and Turkey.”
Full text of the statement:
“We are especially concerned for the safety of Muslims and refugees in the wake of the attack in Paris and will actively oppose any racist attacks against them. The combination of state and fundamentalist terror has created more than 60 million refugees, the greatest refugee crisis since the Second World War. And just as Bush, Cheney & Co. used 9/11 as a pretext to destroy Iraq, setting all these bloody wheels in motion, we cannot allow Paris to become the rallying cry for more imperialist adventures.
As writers, we are well acquainted with terrorism. We speak from experience, not as observers. In the U.S., Wall St. Journal reporter Daniel Pearl was murdered by Al Qeada in 2002 and freelancers James Foley and Steven Sotloff were executed by ISIS in Syria. In Pakistan, over 100 journalists have been killed in the past 10 years by right-wing fundamentalists, and only in two cases was anyone arrested. In Palestine, more than a dozen reporters were killed and media centers targeted during the Israeli assault on Gaza in 2014. And on November 24, 2009, more than 30 journalists were massacred in the Philippines.
These journalists, and so many more who are killed, kidnapped, threatened and jailed, do the important work of shining light on the truth, something feared by terrorists, Mafia and many governments. We are attacked around the world, simply for reporting the news.
The NWU steadfastly opposes all threats and violence against journalists, be they from fundamentalist or state terrorists. We demonstrated this support by hosting a delegation from the Pakistani Federal Union of Journalists (PFUJ) in our New York City headquarters on November 13, the same day as the terrorist attacks in Paris. We are both affiliates of the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) and a part of the global campaign to end impunity against journalists.
The world is a more dangerous place. These times demand the highest level of international solidarity. Our NY event uniting NWU and PFUJ, was a small step in the right direction.” (Photo and Press Release from NWU)