By Paul Wright
PLN reader Jean Marc Rouillain, a political prisoner in France, has written and informed us that the April, 1991, issue of PLN (which just happened to have his article about the worsening prison conditions in France and the hungerstrike he and other prisoners were on as a result of this) had been banned from the French prison system as being "subversive." Jean Marc received all 11 issues of PLN prior to this without incident, but then, none of those had articles about abuses in the French prison system.
It is ironic that this incident of censorship should take place while the French are celebrating the bicentennial of the French Revolution with it's slogan of "Liberty, Equality and Fraternity" which was marked by the storming of the Bastille, a prison in Paris. These actions by French prisoncrats fall into the pattern we have already observed: as long as it's other prisoncrats being exposed or written about everything is fine, as soon as the lime light of publicity from PLN falls on them though the publication immediately becomes "subversive," a "threat to security," "inflammatory," etc. Of course the abuses being reported are invariably well known to the captives within that particular prison so the purpose isn't so much to keep them from knowing what is going on so much as to make them feel isolated and forgotten.
The French judicial system does not allow for the challenging of censorship by prisoncrats so French PLN readers in the gulag are left with no legal or judicial recourse. French prison officials do not dispute the truth or accuracy of Jean Marc's article but just that this and all future issues of PLN are now "subversive."
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