Kevin Rudd has said that Fiji is now “virtually a military dictatorship”. I’m not sure what else needs to happen before the word “virtually” gets dropped, but whatever term you want to use, it sure isn’t democracy – especially with the latest censorship crackdown. The dictatorship’s Secretary for Information, Major Neumi Leweni, is kindly providing ‘information officers’ and police to assist every media newsroom in Fiji with deciding what is and isn’t newsworthy. Some more details are on the Talking Fiji blog.
The renewed censorship will mean blogs and other sources of online information will probably become the main way to access uncensored information out of Fiji.
Not long after this current coup first occurred, the military attempted to shut down access to anti-government blogs. No doubt similar efforts will be made now, but at present there is a wide range of blogs providing some information and some vibrant rallying calls.
In addition to those linked to above, some other examples include:
Some commentary from Australian based blogs and news sites:
– (Apr 16) Charles Penn provides a “Message from Media-Gagged Fiji” at New Matilda
– Jenny Hayward-Jones at The Interpreter examines the possible ramifications for the wider Pacific region if Fiji’s economy continues to deteriorate;
– This post at Larvatus Prodeo was overly optomistic about the Court ruling that the government was unconstitutional. The comments thread tracks the trashing of that decision.
– (18/4) Another piece at The Interpreter, this time by Graham Dobell.
– Legal Eagle examines some of the history and legal issues at Skeptic Lawyer.