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  1. #1
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    Post Petition to call upon the FIA to not race in Bahrain

    I am not a great believer in petitions, because usually they are ignored by people who do not have to answer to an electorate, but it is worth pointing out that the human rights organisation avaaz has been asking for support to stop the Grand Prix in Bahrain. At the time of writing the total number of signatures is close to 454,000. As any F1 internet veteran will tell you the world’s serious English-speaking F1 fans number around 500,000, as most websites tend to top out at that kind of number when it comes to unique users. This would suggest that a considerable percentage of people who care about the sport are not happy with the FIA decision, although there are no doubt a large number of people who do not care about the sport, but do care about human rights issues. I have no idea how the numbers are split. Nonetheless, here is the link to the petition.

    The message attached to the petition reads: “To Red Bull, and other F1 teams: We call on you to declare publicly that you won’t race in Bahrain this year, because the government has killed and injured hundreds of innocent people who were standing up for their rights. Your reputation, and Formula 1′s, will suffer if you reward this deadly regime.”
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    I believe most of the teams except for Renault have said they refuse to race there even if FIA gives the final go ahead. I hope the race doesn't go, because that would be a slap in the face of the Bahrain people. The same could be said for the China GP, but that's another story.
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    I hope they dont race there, the people will feel such a euphoric sense of accomplishment. It will give them the moral and strength to keep going, this race can really turn out to be more momentum for a revolution which i hope happens soon.
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    You guys, you forget we have a member in Bahrain, 0-60motorsports.

    He says the media has blown this out of proportion and people are trying to ruin his government. He doesn't seem to have any problem with the government... anyone thinking that maybe the media is pushing the issue on some of these revolutions and there is more at work here?

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    Looks like the 2011 Bahrain GP is cancelled:

    Consider it official: There will be no Formula One race in Bahrain for the 2011 season. This news comes despite a meeting where the FIA's World Motor Sport Council voted to bring Bahrain back into the F1 calendar on October 30.

    What changed? Turns out that the FIA had sent a commissioner to Bahrain to check things out. He returned with a glowing report of the country, and suggested the race be held. Open and shut, right? Apparently not. That commissioner's trip was reportedly a farce put on by the country's dictator in an effort to secure the race and show the world that the situation in Bahrain is under control.

    A number of human rights organizations allege the FIA easily allowed itself be tricked, including Avaaz, which has compiled nearly half a million signatures opposing the race. Ricken Patel, executive director at Avaaz had this to say:

    Reading the FIA's Bahrain report is like stepping into the Twilight Zone. While the FIA's sham report says no human rights have been violated, at least 31 Bahrain citizens have been killed and hundreds more tortured and imprisoned. Formula One must pull out of Bahrain immediately or have their reputation forever tarnished.

    Eleven of the 12 F1 teams protested the event, and with no cars or drivers on hand, holding a race would be a difficult assignment. Therefore it's been officially cancelled.

  6. #6
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
    You guys, you forget we have a member in Bahrain, 0-60motorsports.

    He says the media has blown this out of proportion and people are trying to ruin his government. He doesn't seem to have any problem with the government... anyone thinking that maybe the media is pushing the issue on some of these revolutions and there is more at work here?
    How's this for out of proportion.
    This is an article from The Independent in London. It needs no further comment.

    This is the account of one Shia member of staff at the Bahrain International Circuit, which hosts the Grand Prix, who was arrested in April. Still suffering from injuries inflicted by his interrogators, he has now left the country. He wishes to remain anonymous and is referred to as AB throughout:

    “AB’s ordeal began when three cars full of security forces arrived at the BIC offices on the morning of 7 April. They went floor by floor searching for people whose names were on their list. When they arrived at the floor of AB’s office, they called out his name. They immediately took him away, beating him as they went along the corridor. At least 23 other BIC staff were arrested that day, he says.
    The motor race employees were blindfolded and handcuffed using electric cable and were taken to Riffa West police station. Once there, they were led to a room where the group were all beaten with sticks and cables for hours. They were accused of having celebrated the fact that the Formula One had been cancelled earlier in the year. AB denies this, saying that as an employee of BIC, he depends for his livelihood on the events held at BIC, particularly the Formula One.
    AB was taken to an interrogation room. He was interrogated about the number of times he went to Pearl Roundabout, the centre of pro-democracy protests. He said he had been there twice, but the officer forced him to say that he had been there 20 times. At one point an officer put AB’s head between his legs and flipped his body over, and he lost consciousness. Beatings continued. The verbal abuse he experienced was full of anti-Shia sectarian hatred. The officers called him “son of muta’a” – a temporary marriage permitted in Shia Islam – and “son of a $#@!”. At around 7pm he was told to strip naked and was again beaten severely. The cable around his hands became extremely tight because of severe swelling. The police station was over-flowing with at least 20 people sleeping on the floor in one cell with barely enough space to lie down. They were not given blankets and the air-conditioning was kept very low so it was too cold to sleep.
    This treatment lasted for three days until they were transferred to Dry Dock prison, beatings continuing all the while. At Dry Dock the situation was much better and there was no more torture. AB was given sun cream and told to sit in the sun so that injuries from his torture wounds could heal. He was freed after 20 days and told to sign papers banning him from talking to the media.
    Today his hands tremble and he suffers from numbness in his arms as well as anxiety attacks and paranoia.
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  7. #7
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    ^ Terrible story but since the source is anonymous no way to know if it is the truth. Western media is apparently putting a lot of pressure on the Middled East with articles such as that as well through social networking.

    Why do we need to go to other sources when we have a member living in Bahrain who can tell us directly what is up?

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    Maybe because he can not be everywhere in his country. He can not possibly know what's going on everywhere. Which is ok by me, don't misunderstand me. And yes, the F1 would be good for Bahrain. But not at all costs. + that some of the teams still do not feel safe going there.

    Here is a good read about the whole situation from an F1 point of view:

    What the world thinks about F1 in Bahrain

    June 8, 2011 by joesaward
    Since the FIA offered itself up for a beating over the question of Bahrain, the punches have been landing one after another – at least from the British media, which has been ferocious in its criticism of the decision. The British newspapers, news agencies and BBC are widely copied around the world and so negative reports have been appearing here and there, quoting the British sources, although there has been surprisingly little reaction in other non-English newspapers, which suggests that either the rest of the world does not care about Bahrain; or does not care about F1; or both. The media conspiracy theory does not work for me because I am not part of any such thing and I am writing as I am writing because the non-government sources of information that I have in Bahrain are saying that things are very definitely NOT good there, which backs up reports by the best quality journalists in the place; and the reports from human rights organizations, which have no reason to make up this kind of stuff. The biggest flaw in the official story is that no-one can come up with a sensible reason why anyone would create such stories. Yes, probably there are some Iranians who would like to stir up trouble, but news agencies such as Reuters and the Associated Press do not generally accept propaganda, without questioning it. In any case, there is sufficient citizen journalism on the Web to raise very serious questions about what has been going on in Bahrain.
    I have been generally supportive of the FIA President because I think he has been doing a good job, but I think that in this case the FIA has been misled and the decision is naive. The report completed by Spain’s Carlos Gracia seems to have accepted everything that the government said as being true and accepted the word of those wheeled out by the government from other groups.
    The Christian Science Monitor, a Boston-based publication renowned for its fair reporting in the Middle East says that “Bahrain’s Sunni monarch may have called in mercenaries and Saudi troops to stamp out calls for democracy in his wealthy kingdom, tortured activists demanding more political freedom, and systematically discriminated against members of the country’s Shiite majority. But the mandarins of auto racing have a message for King Hamad al-Khalifa and his entourage: ‘Gentlemen, start your engines!’”
    The highly respected Foreign Policy magazine, based in Washington and owned by the Washington Post Company, says that Gracia’s report “appears to be a complete whitewash”, while Professor Toby Jones, a Stanford PHD who now lectures at Rutgers University in New Jersey, who is a Bahrain specialist, has been quoted as saying that “Formula 1 wanted to be told that everything is fine, and that’s the answer they got”. Jones argues that holding the race may be a miscalculation “because it gives the protesters a date to rally around.”
    The Economist, another hugely respected publication, based in London, reported in last week’s edition that “The body that governs Formula 1 motor-racing is to decide whether to hold a race in Bahrain later this year: it had been postponed because of the unrest. If the green light is given, the authorities will hail the decision as a sign of international recognition that all is again well.
    “But it is not. In the Shia villages of the island’s north-west, it felt much the same, as troops shot at a few token demonstrators. While Shia villagers cower, an air of Sunni triumphalism reigns over the island.” The magazine says that “the Bahraini king’s men have razed dozens of Shia shrines and put up billboards on main roads near Sunni-populated suburbs, depicting nooses dangled over the heads of Shia leaders. Hundreds of public-sector Shias have been suspended, to the delight of Sunni immigrants from such places as Pakistan and Bangladesh seeking promotion.
    “The crackdown has restored a façade of calm. Shia protesters and the few Sunnis who campaigned at their side are lying low, hoping the terror may pass them by. Demonstrators have removed celebratory photographs of Pearl Roundabout, the geographical hub of the protests, from their Facebook pages. Those still with jobs pin badges saying “al-Khalifa—Glory of the Nation” to their lapels.”
    The newspaper warned that “accusations that Iran is encouraging its fellow Shias in Bahrain to rise up as a fifth column risk self-fulfilment. Forced out of public life, Shias are turning their backs on the regime. Doctors treat the injured in hiding to spare them arrest in public hospitals. Just as Sunni Bahrainis look to help from their Gulf neighbours, so younger Shias increasingly listen to Lebanese, Iraqi and Iranian television channels beamed by their co-religionists”.
    The conclusion is that the situation is frightening international residents.
    “Some Westerners are packing their bags,” The Economist reported. “Banking, which once accounted for over a quarter of Bahrain’s wealth, is searching for safer climes. Several foreign banks have drastically reduced their staffs. Even members of the ruling family are said to have sent wads of cash abroad. By using ruthless methods in the hope of preserving their power, the al-Khalifas may in the long run be storing up even more trouble and resentment for a shaky future.”
    The report is supported by most of the human rights organisations, notably Amnesty International, which last week issued a statement calling for a stop to “the continuing harassment of human rights defenders in Bahrain despite the lifting yesterday of the state of emergency”. The organisation reported in detail about the behaviour of the authorities towards leading critic Nabeel Rajab and human rights lawyers Mohammad Ahmad, Hafedh Hafedh and Mohammad al-Jishi.
    “Amnesty International is concerned that these individuals are being targeting by the Bahraini authorities on account of their peaceful and legitimate exercise of their rights to freedom of expression and assembly and because of their role in exposing evidence of human rights violations by the security forces in Bahrain. These actions grossly violate international human rights standards.”
    Human Rights First (HRF), a non-profit, nonpartisan international human rights organization based in New York and Washington DC, has written to Bernie Ecclestone to give him an overview of the human rights violations and sectarian tensions that have traumatized Bahrain in recent months. HRF’s Brian Dooley said: “It appears that the assessment of the human rights situation presented to the World Motor Sport Council was not a full or accurate picture, and conflicts with the evidence on the ground.
    “Giving this prestigious event to the Bahrain authorities while there are reports of peaceful protestors being shot in the streets is a formula for disaster. Hundreds of people remain in detention after months of military rule. Show trials and attacks on human rights activists continue. In short, pro-democracy activists are being left in the dust. The Bahraini authorities should not have been awarded this event when they can’t even protect the basic human rights of their people.
    “By aligning itself with the violent Bahraini regime, Formula 1’s reputation will be severely damaged. Racing fans everywhere should be dismayed that Formula 1 is lending its stamp of approval to a country where reform has stalled.”
    Many fans seem to agree. The online human rights organisation www.avaaz.org has a petition calling for the event to be cancelled. This has been signed by more than 450,000 fans in recent days and one can see new signings and it is clear that these are coming from all over the world even if the media has been muted other than in the UK.
    The British politicians have also been wading into the fight. British Foreign Secretary William Hague said that “Formula One has not done itself any good by what has been announced”, Shadow Foreign Secretary Douglas Alexander said that it was “not the time” for such decisions and former Liberal Democrat leader Sir Menzies Campbell said the decision was “simply shameful”.
    Although Todt has been actively defending Gracia’s report, he has lost the support of Bernie Ecclestone, who has seen the way that the situation is going and has concluded that the World Council decision was wrong – although he was one of those who voted. The Formula One teams have written to the FIA, the Formula One group and the organisers of the race underlining that its membership did not want to race in Bahrain and have asked that the India GP be returned to that date, as originally planned. In fact there are questions as to whether or not the FIA has the right to change the date. Article 66 of the International Sporting Code states that: “No amendments shall be made to the Supplementary Regulations after the beginning of the period for receiving entries, unless unanimous agreement is given by all competitors already entered, or by decision of the stewards of the meeting for reasons of force majeure or safety”. This is clearly not the case.
    Todt says that the media is not speaking with a single voice (which is true). “What is true in the UK is not true in France, is not true in Italy. Same in Germany. I read the newspapers every day,” he said. “In the UK it is big.”
    The French, in the meantime, are more interested in the suggestion that Belgian GP promoter Andre Maes has been asked if he would like to alternate his race with an event in France. The word amongst the French journos is that there could be a French race at Paul Ricard.
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  9. #9
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    ^ Need to space that out David.

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    I know, it's over and done with. Water under the bridge.
    The race is cancelled.
    Politics and racing don't mix well.
    There are two theories to arguing with women. Neither one works

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by DavidV Click here to enlarge
    I know, it's over and done with. Water under the bridge.
    The race is cancelled.
    Politics and racing don't mix well.
    Maybe you misunderstood, I meant add spaces/paragraphs to the article to make it easier to read.

  12. #12
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    Hahaha, yes i did misunderstood you there.
    Too late now, cannot edit it any more...
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    2 out of 2 members liked this post. Yes Reputation No
    David,

    This thread made me laugh. See, when all the protests were going down in Bahrain I informed Sticky and lot of other people about the real situation in Bahrain. You know how and why? Thats because me and my family were caught in the middle if it as I live right next to the Pearl Roundabout. Plus working in the intelligence field and all my Family from my mothers side being in the intelligence field. I'll tell you something personal about myself and my family, im sunni, my wife to be (God willing) is Shia and my Family do not care who is shia or sunni, they say we are all muslims. During the protests the protestors terrified me and my family, made our nights sleepless, NOT a word came out of my families mouth against them!

    Oh and this is gona make you feel really......how should i put it........BAD.........Mr. AB from the BIC is a long time friend of mine for 12 years as we work together at the track (I am one of the senior marshals). I know he was arrested and released but I didn't see a scratch on him and I'll probably be meeting him to watch the F1 race tomorrow. I didn't discuss this issue with him but NOW I will and if he wants I will tell you exactly what happened.

    The western journalists who reported and exaggerated matters in Bahrain had an agenda. The protestors have been caught faking a lot of stuff, like self inflicting wounds and saying the Bahraini security forces did it, etc etc. David now before you start posting more media articles trying to prove me wrong don't forget I am in the intelligence field and I have seen proof with my own eyes, some video and some in front of me as my room faces the road leading to the pearl where all this happened. Further more would you like me to present to you my Family and Neighbors in person to give you the truth? I can go on and on...........

    IT HAS BEEN PROVEN THE PEOPLE WHO STARTED THE PROTESTS HAD A HIDDE AGENDA FUELED AND FINANCED BY IRAN! IRAN WAS FINANCING THIS MISSION TO OVER THROW BAHRAINS GOVT. I hear they have a really tolerant and free regime in IRAN, NOOOOTTTTTTT.

    Fella's Bahrain has a fairly equal amount if shia/sunni split and never before NEVER BEFORE has a thing like this happened! This was a completely outside influenced occurrence! Even after all that's happened Bahrain's Govt keeps announcing and begging people from the opposition to come to the table and the King is ready to offer them so many things, more than they demanded actually. So we will see what happens.

    All is calm in Bahrain, everyone goes about their daily business and TRUST me when i say this EVERYONE IS HAPPY ITS OVER!

    A LOT OF SHIA'S are happy too lol as I chill with them every day!

    Here are some interesting articles for you to read since you like media SO much:

    http://www.bahrainindependent.com/20...er-al-khalifa/

    http://www.gulf-daily-news.com/NewsD...storyid=307563

    Oh and just to tell you what a lying bunch of $#@!s the media are, When any clash happened between the Govt or the protestors I had the news on the TV in my room and you know how u can watch 4 channels split screen, well we had BBC, JAzeera, CNN, etc on and what was happening in front of our eyes was being twisted and turned and transformed into some other BS and put on the news that very moment. LOL what was funny was we would look out of the window then on TV and say to each other (My family) how messed up the media had become and how it would go to any lengths to make money and make someone look bad.

    Any way David its a sad day that the F1 race has been cancelled, I am one of the members of the Bahrain Motor Federation and one of the Senior Chief's at the track (Marshaling). I'll give you an example of the truth, tomorrow us marshals will be getting together to watch the Canadian F1 race all sunni and shia together! Click here to enlarge Love all my F1 Marshaling People! Click here to enlarge

    In the end mistakes were made by both sides and we THE PEOPLE OF BAHRAIN want to move on with our life! A lot of people have forgiven and forgotten and sit together again and socialize and do business together again. Life will go on and everyone will come back together in our peaceful country. I invite anyone here to come to Bahrain and see for themselves what the REAL truth is. Sticky will come visit me when he can and you all know STICKY! He calls it like he sees it. Click here to enlarge

    Peace.
    Click here to enlarge



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  14. #14
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    ^ Interesting, to say the least.

    Thanks for sharing Ejaz, not a bad idea to ask someone who lives in Bahrain what is going on in Bahrain.

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    Thanks for the real take 0-60. The media will warp everything for their benefit. It's great everyone there is trying work everything out.
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Scourge82 Click here to enlarge
    Thanks for the real take 0-60. The media will warp everything for their benefit. It's great everyone there is trying work everything out.
    Hey No probs man. I just dont want people thinking that the Govt here is bad etc. They are very good. Which other state in the GCC lets other Non Muslim or Shia sects practice their religion openly. NONE. The King even sends them so many items and closes roads for them to practice their religion when they need it. No other GCC Country has OPEN churches, Hindu temples, shia mosques etc. ONLY BAHRAIN DOES.
    Click here to enlarge



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