Recounting the Story of Saeed Al-Hamad on Last Day of his Life

2022-06-30 - 2:45 p

Bahrain Mirror (Exclusive): Up until the Peninsula Shield forces entered Bahrain on the evening of March 14, 2011, Saeed Al-Hamad was just an ordinary journalist and essayist. His job was to wait for the articles of the "Al-Ayyam" newspaper writers to reach him by fax or email, send them to the directing department and wait for them as a trusted supervisor over the limits of freedom, sign his name on them and then return home. This was the daily routine of his journalistic career, and we can add having "breakfast" in his office with a group of "decaffeinated" neoliberals, and find out the latest snitches here and there.

He has always been lurking on the sidelines of Her Majesty's court, as wasn't known for any journalistic scoops, extraordinary dialogue skills or impeccable writing.

After the Gulf forces entered Bahrain and brutally suppressed those demanding freedom and democracy, he had the opportunity to play the role of a clown, the presenter of entertainment shows before the death sentences were handed down, and presenting breaks prior to the appearance of political prisoners in forced confessions filmed on his show (Open Dialogue with Saeed Al-Hamad), which was assigned to him by Fawaz Al Khalifa and Nabil Al-Hamr of the Ministry of Information Affairs.

In a vulgar style, he entertained the officials of the country during the Emergency Law Period (National Safety Period), and was the tongue of those who seek revenge against citizens who dared to oppose the authoritarian rule.

The target audience of Saeed Al-Hamad's show was only loyalists. His operators found it necessary to keep those people provoked against the protest movement. The regime was aware that the only thing that hurts it is the unity of the two sides and agreement on the proposed demands, and that its survival lies in deepening division and sectarianism. 

The examples of the obscenities he caused are countless, let alone him ruining people's personal lives. His talent for fraud and treachery has emerged even against those who ate, drank and worked with. Thus, he devoted episodes against journalists who declared standing with the demands of the popular movement.

Among them was an episode against writer and media person Jawad Abdulwahab. He also repeatedly attacked journalist Adel Marzouk and writer Dr. Ali Al-Dairi, and others who were his career colleagues. 

He also aired forced confessions filmed in the corridors of the Ministry of Interior of student Ayat Al-Qurmozi and attacked Dr. Ali Al-Ekri and Dr. Ghassan Dhaif, as well as Secretary General of the General Federation of Bahrain Trade Unions, Salman Al-Mahfouz, whose cousin was killed some time after being attacked in Al-Hamad's program. He revealed the character of the little detective who was hidden inside him all that time. 

In a report monitoring some 7,602 media items, the result of hate speech and messages that incite or help incite hatred against human rights defenders, political activists, Bahraini citizens and international human rights institutions in 2018, Saeed Al-Hamad's share was 35 articles which he published in Al-Ayyam newspaper.

His monitoring program was accused by a fact-finding committee headed by Bassiouni, where the committee's report confirmed the contribution of Bahrain TV and the official media in general to the spread of sectarianism among citizens with the authorities' support.

Saeed used to receive media materials through representatives of the Interior Ministry, the National Security Service, and from Fawaz Al Khalifa, the then Minister of Information Affairs, king's media advisor Nabil Al-Hamr, and Samira Rajab.

After the emergency law period, he continued to work from a room inside the Ministry of Information, which was later called Al-Ittihad TV. However, his hopes were crushed in 2015 when his snitch stories about his colleagues ended. Bahrain also entered into an economic austerity plan, so the room was closed and he was returned to his office at the headquarters of Al-Ayyam newspaper. 

He received bribes, some of them were in public, such as the new car he received on air by a member of the ruling family, but he has always been a cheap worker waiting for any new bonus from his employer.

Despite everything he has done, Al-Hamad couldn't manage to penetrate the opposition camp. They turned him intelligently into (sarcasm) and material to laugh at his populist performance. Many people produced various film materials to express ridicule of him and his program, but the opposition classified him as one of the hate speech facades directed against them.

Saeed Al-Hamad then resorted to his Twitter account to attack the opposition and try to market himself again. He did not have the necessary capabilities and talents, so interaction with him remained limited, and his articles remained as before, unread. Additionally, the latest stats prepared by Bahrain Press Association on how many times the independent journalists clicked on loyalist articles found that it was zero. 

This is how it all ended, and the story of Saeed Al-Hamad ended on Tuesday, June 21, 2022. Sawsan Al-Shaer and his employer Nabil Al-Hamr were the only ones to lament his death.

His story has come to an end, after it had faded some time ago. 

Arabic Version