Dungeons for journalists, Or How to Silence Dissent and Retain a Democratic Posture
On September 10, the political show trial against Dutch investigative journalist Micha Kat is scheduled to begin at The Hague.
Last April, upon landing at Amsterdam airport for a short visit to the Netherlands from Laos, where he lives, Micha Kat was arrested and summoned to stop publishing articles on his web site as a condition for his release. Surely an unusual request for a supposedly democratic government. If anything, it is a clear attempt at silencing a major dissenting voice in the Dutch media landscape.
In spite of complying with this unreasonable request, Kat subsequently was unlawfully detained and thrown in jail for three months awaiting his trial.
Kat’s site, www.klokkenluideronline.nl, is the most widely read source for alternative news, comment and analysis in the Netherlands.
It is quite understandable that the Dutch government wants to silence this critical journalist. After all, Micha Kat has an impressive track record. Uncovering widespread corruption in the Law Courts at The Hague, Kat has forced its Vice President, Judge Hans Westenberg, to step down for perjury. One of Westenberg’s cronies, former Vice President Pieter Kalbfleisch, who had moved on to become director of the Netherlands Competition Authority (the national competitive fairness watchdog), was forced to leave his new job. Like Westenberg, Judge Kalbfleisch had pronounced verdicts that benefited his personal friends and business associates.
Since December, 2003, Kat has been writing on his blog about evil practices not only in the judiciary, but also in health care, the pharmaceutical industry, acounting and auditing, banking and finance and journalism. Equipped with a good sense for relevant details, with an incisive pen and a rare intellectual depth, Kat (who is also a competent classical scholar) soon became widely feared by the authorities. Feared and therefore at first systematically ridiculed. But Kat only became more determined as his former colleagues began to ostracize him, no doubt spurred on by jealousy. Each day, Kat’s blog is read by thousands, with readership steadily increasing.
The charges against Kat include seven counts of libel: two by MSM journalists, one by the editor of Dutch state television news, one by a politician, one by a policeman, one by a Chief State Prosecutor, and one by an obscure junior lawyer who has yet to win a case. Kat is also charged with incitement to violence, for having asked the readers of his web site to throw innocuous objects (chunks of beef, candles, letters and posters) at the Queen’s royal carriage during the official opening of the parliamentary year. Oddly enough Micha Kat, a Jew himself, is also charged with violating anti-discrimination laws in the Nederlands. His crime: questioning the official and legally protected version of the Shoah, generally known as ‘Holocaust.’
The trumped up charges obscure the real reason for the harassment and persecution of this independent journalist. The main focus of Kat’s work has been the widespread, endemic corruption in the Dutch legal system. Much of Kat’s investigative reporting has been directed at Joris Demmink, the highest civil servant at the Dutch ‘Ministry of Security and Justice’ (since 2002). It is indeed noteworthy that, while Demmink is seriously suspected of being a paedophile, so far four well-documented denunciations against him by victims, have been shelved. Politically, the most significant denunciation was submitted by Hüseyin Baybaşin, a Kurdish businessman and political activist from Turkey, who in 2002 was sentenced to life imprisonment for murder and drug trafficking. In 1995 Baybaşin, a leading member of the nationalist PKK, asked for political asylum in the Netherlands after being persecuted and tortured in Turkey. Instead, the Dutch government charged Baybaşin with murder and drug trafficking and had him sentenced on the basis of false evidence: independent experts declared that the audio tapes that were the mainstay of the prosecutor’s evidence, had been assembled and tampered with. In 2007, Baybaşin formally accused Secretary General Demmink of having acted under blackmail by the Turkish government. By threatening to reveal information that during his visits to Turkish resorts during the 1990s, Demmink had been abusing Turkish minors, the Turkish government managed to use the Dutch legal system to put away a political dissident.
The situation has become so serious that the entire Dutch legal system is now run by the very sort of people it is supposed to punish and put behind bars. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vJKSusZsfdg&feature=player_embedded) Corruption has become a multimillion euro industry, with government and corporate interests fleecing citizens and entrepreneurs in various ways, but mainly through the legal system, taxes and never-ending price hikes on the part of privatized monopolies (http://www.schipholwanbeleid.nl/ ).
Micha Kat has been the only Dutch journalist to look into the matter and to confront Dutch Justice ministers, Demmink himself, the members of the Dutch Parliament, public servants and judges and lawyers with the ‘Demmink Case.’ Without exception, every single one of them refused to answer any questions, either scurrying away or angrily barking at Kat for having had the temerity to ask.
Significantly, nothing more is heard of the complaint against Micha Kat, filed in 2010 by the Bilderberg organization (http://www.infowars.com/bilderberg-files-complaint-against-dutch-journalist-micha-kat/). It would seem the Dutch government has decided that pressing on would engender too much unwanted publicity.
Meanwhile, one of Kat’s plaintiffs has managed to secure a court order allowing him to secure both all of Kat’s personal assets and his web site. On 17 September, the web site will be sold at a public auction. If there were any doubts about the true nature of the engineered case against Micha Kat, it is the auctioning of the leading alternative news web site in the Netherlands.
Under these circumstances, there is no hope Kat will get a fair trial. The Dutch media (all state controlled or corporate owned), representing the powerful interests of the political establishment, dutifully report on the Pussy Riot girls in Russia, but remain silent on the repression of free speech under their very noses.
Needless to say, Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch, ever anxious to criticize whatever happens outside the US, its NATO vassals and its neocolonies and protectorates, remain completely silent on the political repression in the Netherlands and will not even consider looking into this case of Nazi-style repression.