"Stop suing journalists: RSF tells Singapore leaders -Fri, Mar 26, 2010 AFP
SINGAPORE (AFP) - Media rights watchdog Reporters Without Borders has urged Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, MM Lee Kuan Yew and other top officials to stop taking 'libel actions' against journalists.
RSF secretary general Jean-Francois Julliard wrote an 'open letter' to the Singapore leader Thursday asking for a meeting about the group's observations and proposals 'for guaranteeing press freedom' in the affluent city-state.
His letter followed an apology and payment of damages by the New York Times Company to the Lees and former prime minister Goh Chok Tong over an allegedly defamatory article."
I find this President of RSF (Reporters Without Borders) appeal to the political leaders of Singapore to be a bit strange. I think he got it totally wrong as it is not about 'stop suing his members' but 'do your homework and produce hard evidence to substantiate your allegation of wrong doings by the people in power!'
It is ridiculous to allow the Reporters to write anything they want without any backup! They cannot have the 'licence to smear some one's reputation' just because they called themselves: 'journalists' or to 'provoke discussion on controversial issues'!
Lessons for me are:
1. some people simply refused to accept that the Lees are very determined people with firm beliefs in what they are doing is right. They will not back off, especially in this type of situation where the accusers CANNOT produce any concrete and solid evidence to back up their claims of immoral dealing. Just like the PRC government will not back off from setting their own timing and agenda on if and when they will let Yuan appreciate!;
2. to effect change in a country of which you are not a citizen or having a stake in it required you to be absolutely clean on WHY are you agitating for such changes? You must really consider 'how to effect such a change in a non-confrontational manner' so that you can be effective. You also must respect the rules of the game set in that country and NOT insist that YOUR RULES should applied. It just does not work this way! It is NO LONGER the French or British or whatever foreign colonial time. Singapore is an independent country and must be respected in that regards;
3. to repeatedly get yourself charged and convicted and made to pay damages to the people you made allegations against, you lost your credibility. You showed yourself to be incapable of being flexible to be effective. You will lose supporters, especially those who can think well. It is not the desired consequences. So, change you must.
May I wish the RSF good luck if they persist in following the 'ridiculous rule' or I wish they good sense to starting 'working hard and not made any allegation that they know they cannot defend when called to court under another libel suit!'.