Committee to Protect Journalists Takes Up Cause of Slain Bahrain Citizen Journalist

Who Shot Ahmed? Cover

Who Shot Ahmed? A Mystery Unravels in Bahrain’s Botched Arab Spring is a Kindle Single that tells a riveting story of a young citizen journalist who was slain while filming a protest–and in telling the story exposes the geopolitical tensions sparked by Bahrain’s Arab Spring gone terribly awry.

I served as the publisher of the e-single, which was written by former UN Dispatch writer Elizabeth Dickinson. We published the story as the first installment of  the Development and Aid World News Service e-single series about global humanitarian issues off the mainstream radar.  We are thrilled that it was selected in the exclusive Amazon Kindle Single listing.

This week marks the 18 month anniversary of Ahmed’s killing. His family is no closer to justice. To its great credit, the Committee to Protect Journalists is taking up the cause, and has posted this item on its blog from Elizabeth Dickinson.

On the night he was shot, Ahmed Ismail Hassan al Samadi was working. Protestors had gathered along a highway near his home in a small Bahraini village. With his handheld camcorder, Ahmed filmed as they marched. He filmed as security forces arrived in marked and unmarked cars. The citizen journalist had tens of hours of footage of scenes just like this from a year of ongoing demonstrations that began at the height of the Arab Spring. With one bullet, his filming came to an end.

There are plenty of rumors and theories about what happened on that night, March 30, 2012–about who shot Ahmed. But as this week marks the 18-month anniversary of Ahmed’s death, his family is still no closer to justice. There are no announced suspects in the case, nor has the family been contacted with any news about an investigation.

In Bahrain, Ahmed’s case is both unique and alarmingly common. His killing stands out as brutal: a live bullet, a young victim. His life wasn’t taken accidentally, and the assailant may have been a civilian.

But in seeking justice, Ahmed’s family has shared the frustrations of many in the opposition, who say their cases are not treated with seriousness. And meanwhile, citizen journalists similar to Ahmed have continued to find themselves under particular scrutiny for their work documenting unrest.

Read the whole thing. And pick up a copy of Who Shot Ahmed? to learn the whole story. The book is the length of a long magazine article, and available for $2.99 on your e-reader or mobile device. With your purchase we hope to support the telling of other stories like Ahmed’s