“My duty is to speak I do not want to be an accomplice. My nights would be haunted by the spectre of the innocent person who is atoning for a crime, which he did not commit, in the most horrible torture”
Emile Zola, “J’accuse”, L’Aurore, January 13th, 1898.
Today’s communication has become an essential element of the defence, particularly in political matter, when an innocent accused is on the verge to be broken down by a Kafkaesque trial. Colonna’s trial, revolting in all respects, and even more since the past few hours, has given rise to a few courageous papers, including from the Parisian Press. Some other more reserved or prudent journalists are holding back their pens, limiting themselves to record the remarks of everyone in a neutral manner: the President of the Court, the defendant’s barristers, the civil parties… But, neutrality, in this case, participates passively to injustice. Without counting some expressions unfortunately coming mechanically in the commentaries, such as the absurd phrase “alleged murderer”, in the law of any civilized country, “presumption” can only be presumption of innocence. In the other hand, by a stupendous overturn of the proof charge, it would be left to the defendant to prove his innocence!
Yet, it is the honour of a journalist to refuse to follow the pack, to denounce the unacceptable, to express his convictions, to take a stand, and to say: the situation regarding this man is not acceptable.
In so doing, he could change things…
It is the reason for which we must today call upon all the Corsican and other analysts and commentators: say what is on your mind, testify about what you saw or heard.
Do not make yourselves accomplices of infamy.
Denounce it with all your might;
Like your prestigious colleague did in 1898, accuse the accusers!