The “Day of Rage” washed over the Gulf nation of Bahrain yesterday. It has not abated. With two people killed by the police even those who weren’t big supporters are starting to feel the original protesters’ rage.
Fadhel Ali Almatrook was killed by a short-range shotgun blast by a police officer. The other’s name and situation are not yet known, but Bahrain’s leader, Sheikh Hamad bin Isa Al-Khalifa, apologized for “the death of our two sons.”
In addition to the deaths, 200 protesters were arrested in the crackdown. A video on YouTube showing what seems to be police firing on protesters has been blocked.
The ruling family in Bahrain is Sunni but the majority of the people are Shi’a, though many of the protesters insist the difference in religious affiliation is not the primary consideration or motivation. However, al-Wefaq, the main Sunni-based opposition political party, withdrew from participation in the government in protest of the deaths.
If Tahrir Square was ground central for the Egyptian protesters, the Pearl Roundabout in Manama serves that role in Bahrain. The hashtag #feb14 is being used by protesters and those following the protests in Bahrain and a Facebook profile, 14th February 2011 Revolution Day is tracking events.