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Today marks one year since we launched the Daily Alert on Rights and Expression. We expected free expression would be under attack in the wake of the 2016 U.S. presidential election, and unfortunately we were right. The last 12 months have brought repeated denigrations of the press by the president, a surge in fraudulent news and assaults on facts, charges against reporters covering protests, threats to defund the National Endowments for the Arts and for the Humanities, a journalist punched in the face by a congressional candidate, public demonstrations turned violent, and more than a hundred other incidents charted in our Trump the Truth timeline. We hope that this daily newsletter has proven a valuable resource for you in navigating this tenuous environment for free speech. Please take a moment today to send your feedback on the DARE—why you subscribe, what you love, and what you think could use improvement—to me at sedkins@pen.org.

As we move into 2018, we’ll continue our efforts to deliver you the tools and resources you need to defend free expression and to stand up against violations of our rights. Thank you for your support.

In solidarity,
Sarah Edkins Lien, Director of Communications

The most pressing threats and notable goings-on in free expression today


The Secret Correspondence Between Donald Trump Jr. and WikiLeaks
The transparency organization asked the president’s son for his cooperation—in sharing its work, in contesting the results of the election, and in arranging for Julian Assange to be Australia’s ambassador to the United States.

Appeals court lets Trump travel ban go partially into effect
A U.S. appeals court in California let President Trump’s latest travel ban go partially into effect, ruling the government can bar entry of people from six Muslim-majority countries with no connections to the United States.

‘One of the most secretive, dark states’: What is Kansas trying to hide?
Kansas runs one of the most secretive state governments in the nation, and its secrecy permeates nearly every aspect of service. From the governor’s office to state agencies, from police departments to business relationships to health care, on the floors of the House and Senate, a veil has descended over the years and through administrations on both sides of the political aisle.

Trump’s war on the media helps keep Moore in play
Donald Trump is trying to keep his options open on Roy Moore, but the president has already helped him in one significant way: His two-year campaign against the mainstream media—in this case The Washington Post—appears to be the key to Moore’s survival strategy.


Trump chuckled as Duterte called journalists ‘spies.’ That’s no joke in the Philippines.
Hearing the Philippine president once again demonize journalists—and seeing Trump chuckle in response—struck a nerve among journalists and activists in the Philippines and beyond. The Philippines ranks as the fifth most dangerous country for journalists.

EU Lawmakers Urge Release Of Azerbaijani Journalist Muxtarli
A letter signed by several members of the European Parliament condemning the treatment of imprisoned Azerbaijani journalist Afqan Muxtarli was sent on November 13 to Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev.

Swiss Journalists Covering Louvre Opening Detained and Interrogated in Abu Dhabi
Two Swiss journalists who were in the United Arab Emirates to cover the opening of the Louvre Abu Dhabi were detained and interrogated for two days after they were spotted filming migrant workers at an open-air market on the outskirts of the city.

She Took On Colombia’s Soda Industry. Then She Was Silenced.
Responding to a complaint by the nation’s leading soda company about an ad warning consumers that sugar-laden beverages can lead to obesity and diet-related illnesses, a Colombian government agency ordered it off the air. Then the agency prohibited Dr. Cerón and her colleagues from publicly discussing the health risks of sugar, under penalty of a $250,000 fine.

DARE is a project of PEN America’s #LouderTogether campaign, bringing you a daily-curated roundup of the most important free expression-related news from the U.S. and abroad. Send your feedback and story suggestions to DARE@pen.org