New Yorker Arrested For Broadcasting Hezbollah TV
Free speech doesn't extend to Hezbollah -- or to those who help Hezbollah speak. That's the lesson learned by a New Yorker who provides satellite broadcasts to customers. The broadcasts include Christian evangelists and, until recently, the Hezbollah station Al Manar.
Javed Iqbal's home and storefront were raided by federal agents, and now he's behind bars, held on a ridiculously high bail -- $250,000 -- for allegedly providing "material support for terrorism." Does "supporting terrorism" include rebroadcasting programming that's available in much of the rest of the world?
"It appears that the statute under which Mr. Iqbal is being prosecuted includes a First Amendment exemption that prevents the government from punishing people for importing news communications," Donna Lieberman, executive director of the New York Civil Liberties Union, said in a statement. "Such an exemption is constitutionally necessary, and the fact that the government is proceeding with the prosecution in spite of it raises serious questions about how free our marketplace of idea is."
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