November 22, 2017

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  • Op-ed: Coup vs. revolution: Which narrative to prevail?

    File photo of anti-Morsi protesters during the June 30 uprising.

    BY ABDELGHANY SAYED Cairo –Following 18 days of protests in around five governorates, Egyptians woke up on 11 February 2011 to see military tanks across the country; while rumors spread that Mubarak is about to step down. A few hours after midday, Egypt’s ex-spy chief, who was appointed as vice-president on 29 January 2011, Omar Suleiman, announced that Mubarak has stepped down and handed power over to the Supreme Council of Armed Forces (SCAF), while SCAF’s spokesperson announced that the military took over power. Mubarak was then put under house arrest by the military in an unknown place, (Sharm El-Sheikh according…

    Op-ed: Revolution redux and the return of Thomas Friedman

    Cairo traffic.

    BY ALI HAZZAH Hello, again. You know me.  I’m the same well-fed, well-traveled guy who has worked for the same rich American publication for the last thirty years.   But that’s not important, because I travel a lot in the Moslem world, and  I’m not like most Americans.  I know the Arab street.  And I’m going to tell what’s actually happening in Egypt right now. The other day, for example, the week in fact that President Morsi became ex President Morsi, I was trying to get a taxi from the 26 of July Street in Zamalek, on the street corner right in…

    Op-ed: Rape of a nation

    Screen grab shows 48-year-old Hamada Saber being assaulted by police during an anti-Morsi protest near the Presidential Palace.

    BY REHAM BARAKAT Last December India witnessed a horrifying gang rape crime in Delhi. A 23-year-old woman was raped by five men on a bus. I won’t get into the morbid details, but suffice it to say that the victim of this barbaric act has died of her injuries. We have been brought up naively and falsely to believe that incidents of this kind do not happen in Egypt. But I remember thinking that when news of the Delhi rape broke that surely similar crimes are committed in our nation but are hardly ever reported or covered by the media….

    Op-ed: New faces, old lies, same denial

    Hundreds of thousands of protesters congregated in Tahrir Square on Tuesday chanting the same slogans they did against Mubarak two years ago.

    BY ASMAA EL GAMMAL The morning after Tuesday’s massive demonstrations against President Mohamed Morsi’s recent constitutional declaration, the Freedom and Justice Party’s message was loud and clear: Tahrir is not to be taken seriously.   On the front page of the party’s newspaper, the headline read: “Revolutionaries, folol (former regime remnants) and peddlers in Tahrir Square. Disregarding the chants of tens of thousands of protesters outraged by the President’s declaration of invincible powers, the FJP’s mouthpiece chose to focus on a handful of corn-sellers to suggest that it was nothing more than a gathering of revolution-haters and petty salesmen.  …

    Op-ed: From Khaled Saeed to Malala Yousafzai

    In the midst of revolution, martyrs and icons can become potent symbols that strike deep at the heart of Arab regimes.

    BY AMRO ALI While reading the horrific case of Malala Yousafzai, the 14-year-old Pakistani girl who was shot in the face by the Taliban for championing girls’ education, I came across a photo of a young supporter of Malala that triggered memories of a similar image that has forever been engraved in my mind: in June 2010 an Egyptian youth protesting the tragic killing of Khaled Saeed, the 28-year-old Alexandrian who was beaten to death by policemen that would trigger the rapid countdown to the 2011 Egyptian revolution (See my detailed June piece Saeeds of Revolution: De-mythologizing Khaled Saeed.) The…

    Op-ed: Owners of the revolution

    Bird's eye view of Cairo. (Photo courtesy Marwa Sameer Morgan)

    BY REHAM BARAKAT It’s Eid. Kahk (cookies) is overflowing; amateurish and almost dangerous fireworks light up the sky; fire-crackers are startling and there is an assumed spirit of joy.But not for everyone. There are millions of Egyptians living below the poverty line. In extreme cases, we know that unlike what we were brought up to believe, that “nobody in Egypt sleeps hungry,”  some people are eating out of piles of garbage whether we choose to acknowledge it or not. I say this because unfortunately there are some people who ignore these facts or even worse, believe that it’s not a…

    Op-ed: Can laughter change Egypt?

    Photo taken during Egypt's January uprising at the center of Tahrir Square shows sketches, jokes and slogans. (Photo by Rania Al Malky)

    BY MARK PETERSEN Oxford, Ohio That Egyptians are funny is a well-known Arab stereotype. Egyptians are said to be khafiift id-damm (light of blood) — able to turn things that would make anyone else’s blood boil into a joke. Before the revolution, this was often expressed in everyday life through political satire – jokes about politicians, the police and the president himself challenged the status quo and poked fun at the pretensions of the powerful. But because these jokes were told privately, among friends and family, they had little effect upon the regime’s grip on power. However during last year’s…

    Compromise and the revolution

    Screen grab of President Mohamed Morsi's historic first speech addressing the nation.

    BY NOUR BAKR At its height, the defining mantra of Egypt’s tumultuous uprising was the famous cry “the people want the fall of the regime.” That the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF), along with many remnants of the Mubarak era remain key players in the country’s politics is widely held as proof that the revolution ultimately failed. Whilst partially true, the electoral successes of the Muslim Brotherhood do not, as many have argued, completely betray the ultimate aim of the uprising. Rather the successive victories of Mohamed Morsi and the FJP signify the triumph of a compromise on…

    Higgs and Egypt’s revolution

    The most ambitious project of CERN, the world’s largest particle physics laboratory, located near Geneva at the border between Switzerland and France, is the particle accelerator known as the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), which began test operations in fall 2007. This image is shows a sector of the LHC tunnel. (Photo courtesy CERN)

    BY WAEL AFIFI Bread, liberty and dignity are the noble unifying goals of the revolution. As the daily political struggles continue to refine, define and often improvise on the shape and the numerous components of these goals, I would like to throw into this mix the tool of scientific literacy.Defined as “an evolving combination of science-related attitudes, skills and knowledge,” it’s important to stress that scientific literacy isn’t an elitist concept.While it is true that combating poverty, illiteracy, disease, and other societal and political ills that plague our country remain the foundation of any revolutionary thinking; it is also true that…

    Egypt holds its breath

    File photo of President Mohamed Morsi giving a speech in Tahrir Square after winning the elections in June 2012..

    BY OMAR ASHOUR Cairo: “You are the authority, above any other authority. You are the protectors, whoever seeks protection away from you is a fool … and the army and the police are hearing me,” said Egypt’s president-elect, Mohamed Morsi, to hundreds of thousands in Tahrir Square. A man imprisoned following the “Friday of Rage” (January 28, 2011) took the presidential oath in Tahrir on a “Friday of Power Transfer” (June 29, 2011). But he almost did not. Ten days earlier, on June 19, I was with a group of former Egyptian MPs in Tahrir Square. One received a phone…

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