Al Hawza (newspaper)
Region: Middle East
Subject: Political/Economic/Social Opinion
Medium: Print Journalism
Artist: Editors and staff of Al Hawza
Confronting Bodies: Coalition Provisional Authority, American troops occupying Iraq
Dates of Action: March, 2004
Location: Baghdad, Iraq
Description of Artwork: Al Hawza is a Shiite newsweekly that is known for it's anti-American sentiment.
The Incident: On March 28, 2004, American Marines closed the popular newspaper and chained its doors shut. The CPA, and its administrator L. Paul Bremmer III, accused the paper of spreading false rumors intended to incite hostilities against American troops. In a letter, Bremmer noted examples of false reporting of which the paper has been accused. One example is the paper's claim that an explosion that killed 50 Iraqi police recruits was the result of an American missile, instead of a car bomb.
Results of Incident: Shortly after the paper's doors were sealed, thousands assembled for a protest where protesters screamed, hoisted banners and men charged a line of American troops. Some Iraqi leaders feel that the closing of Al Hawza will incite more violence by undermining democratic ideals. Bremmer said that the paper may reopen in 60 days, but must adhere to rules ostensibly prohibiting the precipitation of violence.
Source: The New York Times