I linked to the 2007 version of the Reporters Without Borders Annual Press Freedom Index. Now, the new version has come out, and I wanted to post a link to the 2008 version here.
The new version starts with a headline suggesting peace promotes journalistic freedom more than a robust economy, or even democracy.
It is not economic prosperity but peace that guarantees press freedom. That is the main lesson to be drawn from the world press freedom index that Reporters Without Borders compiles every year and from the 2008 edition, released today. Another conclusion from the index – in which the bottom three rungs are again occupied by the “infernal trio” of Turkmenistan (171st), North Korea (172nd) and Eritrea (173rd) – is that the international community’s conduct towards authoritarian regimes such as Cuba (169th) and China (167th) is not effective enough to yield results.
I can’t help but think that the whole ‘spreading of democracy’ thing that was so favorable to the bush administration and the west in general might have turned out differently if their aim wasn’t to spread governmental and economic systems, but rather a peaceful way of life. Lesson learned?
Of course, the United States and Azerbaijan are on the list. See if you can find them. (Hint: Neither is in the top 10.)