Eritrea and North Korea are the first and second most censored countries worldwide, according to a list compiled by the Committee to Protect Journalists of the 10 countries where the press is most restricted. The list is based on research into the use of tactics ranging from imprisonment and repressive laws to harassment of journalists and restrictions on Internet access.
The tactics used by Eritrea and North Korea are mirrored to varying degrees in other heavily censored countries. To keep their grip on power, repressive regimes use a combination of media monopoly, harassment, spying, threats of journalist imprisonment, and restriction of journalists’ entry into or movements within their countries.
Seven of the 10 most censored countries-Eritrea, Ethiopia, Azerbaijan, Vietnam, Iran, China, and Myanmar-are also among the top 10 worst jailers of journalists worldwide, according to CPJ’s annual prison census.
Leadership: President Isaias Afewerki, in power since 1993.
How censorship works: Only state media is allowed to disseminate news; the last accredited international correspondent was expelled in 2007. Even those working for the heavily censored state press live in constant fear of arrest for any report perceived as critical to the ruling party, or on suspicion that they leaked information outside the country.
2. North Korea
Leadership: Kim Jong Un, who took over after his father, Kim Jong Il, died in December 2011.
How censorship works: Article 53 of the country’s constitution calls for freedom of the press, but even with an Associated Press bureau-staffed by North Koreans and located in the Pyongyang headquarters of the state-run Korean Central News Agency-and a small foreign press corps from politically sympathetic countries, access to independent news sources is extremely limited. Nearly all the content of North Korea’s 12 main newspapers, 20 periodicals, and broadcasters comes from the official Korean Central News Agency, which focuses on the political leadership’s statements and activities.
True freedom of the press does not exist in these 10 countries. One thing they all have in common is government control of information, usually through a single source, something which Trump wants the public to eventually accept.
But the media bashing right now is a bit of a red herring. Trump is up to something. Let’s not forget Trump is a narcissistic sociopath. I did a quick google on ‘Trump sociopath’ and found thousands upon thousands of articles, so I’m not alone in believing Trump is a sociopath. Read for yourself here, and here, and here, and Conservative commentator Glenn Beck during an broadcast interview here for starters.
While it is easy and fun to point out what a doofus Trump is, let us never forget he is a sociopath. While he is entertaining us with his rants about the media, fake news, he is also distracting us from what is likely a more sinister event or events.
It is incumbent upon journalists to keep digging everywhere for truth about Trump, his Trump Organization, his ties to Russia, any threats to White House staff or any government employee, any actions which go against the Constitution or law, and not be distracted by the media antics of a buffoon.
America is a great country. It needs the real truth, and not Trump’s version of truth.