When Prison Is Salvation: Mustafa Mohammad Ali Radis Story, the Student Who Graduated with a 98.7% Rank Turns Himself In

2015-07-17 - 4:35 p

"In Prison don't say that everything is over. In prison, you say everything has begun and the beginning is freedom."
Mahmoud Darwish

Bahrain Mirror (Exclusive): What was going around in Mustafa's head when he was turning himself in? How oppressed was he feeling? Was he desperate or did he see that prison was a door of hope? At a time when he was supposed to complete his university applications and enjoy a comfortable vacation and blessed Month of Ramadan with what is left of his family, how was he able to head to prison on his own and why?

Since four years ago, we have been telling the stories of the revolution in "Bahrain Mirror". With every tale, we say that it reflects the oppression this people is suffering from. We told the stories of child Ibrahim Al-Moqdad, Jihad Al-Samee', martyr Om Ghazi, Taiba Darwish, Abdalmenem Mansour, youth Aqil Abdulmohsen, Rida Al-Ghasra, Haitham Al-Hadad, martyr Al-Abbar, Khadija Said, student Ahmad Al-Tashani, child Mohammad Mo'men (the explosives expert), and many more endless stories.

Every story tells us that the people are being eradicated slowly. The people are being killed, imprisoned, besieged, impoverished, intimidated, declared apostates, while being replaced by other people.

Today's story is about Mustafa.

Mustafa is Mohammad Ali Radi Ismail's son, one of the Bahrain 13 figures who were accused of leading the February 14 revolution to overthrow the oppressive regime. Radi is Abdulwahhab Hussain's cousin, who was the first accused in this case and is considered one of the most significant opponents of the regime over the past 25 years.

Radi was sentenced to 15 years in prison, based on false confessions extracted under torture, which is what investigator Bassiouni documented in his report (case number 23): Beatings, cursing, cussing, electrical shocks, sexual harassment, threatening to harm (rape) their women, urinating in their mouths, depriving them of sleep and using restrooms. Detainees were subjected to all kinds of torture. Mohammad Ali spoke of this torture in a touching testimony before the court of appeals, in which he said that he wishes to die from time to time in order to escape the situation he is in.

The period of torture ended, but he didn't. There is a kind of oppression that only grows and becomes severer, unless a stronger force puts an end to it. Under an authoritative absolute rule, the oppression is absolute and justice is just a vision manipulated and controlled by the ruler and his servants.

In January 2012, that is less than a year after the arrest of Mohammad Ali Radi, his son Qasem was arrested, in a case known as the "Banner of Dignity", and


 was sentenced to five years in prison.

Many figures and political prisoners were threatened that their families will be targeted and wives and daughters will be raped before their eyes, so that they would be forced into signing confessions. Threatening to target a national figure's family has become a systematic policy. It is a desperate attempt to break their will and to give an example of the oppression that any figure's family would face even if he was a martyr.

As for the Bahrain 13 figures, there was a clear strategy from the beginning: Don't leave any of their family members. Three of Sheikh Abduljalil Al-Moqdad's sons were arrested: Mustafa, Jaafar and Murtada, who is still imprisoned. Zainab, the daughter of human rights activist Abdulhadi Al-Khawaja was arrested more than 13 times, as his other daughter, Mariam, before she was released under international pressures, and then she was sentenced in absentia to a year in prison. Hussain, activist Muhammad Jawad Parweez's son, was arrested, then released and is still being tried. Also, Hussain, Dr. Abduljalil Al-Singace's son, is still behind bars and Ahmad, political dissenter Hassan Mushame's son, as well.

The Bahraini regime's slogan is "Bring all the insubordinates" and their sons and daughters! According to Mohammad Ali Radi, the list of insubordinates wasn't limited to his son Qasem. After four years of oppression, his son Mustafa was also targeted!

Accompanied by his cousin, Mustafa was walking near his house in the Nuwaidrat village when the police patrol took him into custody on August 14, 2013 and accused him of rallying. Mustafa spent about 20 days in prison. He was then released but his case remained in courts, as he was sentenced to six months of imprisonment and after appealing, the sentence was lowered to 3 months only.

It was God's will that Mustafa didn't miss anything of his last year in school. He even graduated with honors: the first in Al-Ta'awon High School, with a rank of

 98.7%. His mother attended his graduation ceremony yet their joy didn't last for long.

It is true that Mustafa's house wasn't raided to have him arrested and detained after his conviction. He; however, faced two options: either lose his university education or go to prison. If he doesn't go to prison, he will face multiple "security" obstacles and will be pursued. Let's say for the sake of argument that one of the universities accepted him, he will still be threaten to be arrested at any moment, and thus threaten to lose his university education.

To be free, Mustafa has chosen prison. He walked there with his head held high and behind the bars of the police station he waved his high school graduation certificate: Honors student but heading to prison!

What is ironic about this is that Mustafa was one of the candidates to receive a scholarship from the Crown Prince to study abroad. Maybe he will receive a thank you and appreciation letter from the Crown Prince's office for his participation in the "preparatory program"!

With his head held high, Mustafa turned himself in to the Sitra Police Station, on Friday (July 10, 2015) to serve his "two months and ten days". He chose to surprise them before they did. He doesn't want to stay in there when the new school year begins.

His hopes to be granted a scholarship to fulfill his childhood dream to study "medicine" may be shattered, and he knows that he is deprived of that scholarship with no doubt, yet he hasn't given up. He is confident that education isn't the only way to fight.

Mustafa went to the police station without a warrant or sentence notice, but with his honors degree certificate.

Prison to Mustafa is exactly as the Palestinian poet Mahmoud Darwish said: "In Prison don't say that everything is over. In prison, you say everything has begun and the beginning is freedom."

Arabic Issue

: Bahrain Mirror
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