4 common Misconceptions Egyptians have

It’s the golden age of rumors and misconceptions in Egypt these days, especially with the lack of credible “unbiased” news channels or sources for information. Add that to the nationalistic wave in the country, misconceptions do not only get viewed as fact, it actually leads to bad planning, policy and actions. Very few people will attempt to clear those misconceptions now without risking to antagonizing others, but it is a risk I am willing to take, because I cannot take having the same discussions over and over. Let’s go:

 

  1. The US is not against June 30

There is a strong held belief in Egypt that the US is against the June 30th alliance and government, and is waging war against it for the sake of MB. Egyptians perceive US discussion about cutting military aid as an aggressive gesture and are meeting it with extreme hostility usually reserved to slave owners by their freed slaves (It’s that level of intensity). They are complaining daily that the US is against them and supports the terrorism of the MB, and Egyptian social media has made mocking & insulting President Obama a national past time. Despite me being for any mockery of Obama, the reality is that the US is not against June 30th at all.

Here is what the US cares about: for Egypt to be run by a ruler that can stabilize it, and will form a government that makes their relationship look good. The very contradictory reactions the US regarding Egypt comes from two reasons 1.) The lack of any real foreign policy regarding Egypt and the Arab spring for that matter, and 2.) The legal conundrum they are facing now because of us. US law dictates when a military removes a democratically elected leader that is considered a coup, and any aid going its way must be stopped. In reflection of the facts, yes, the military did technically remove Morsi and is now holding him in a location even we, the people who revolted against him, do not know (you do not have him held captive in your basement, do you?), so the situation is meeting the legal definition.

The US administration, which is required to uphold its laws, has no actual choice but to cut the aid, and in order to avoid doing so, it has done impressive political gymnastics in order not to call it that. Watching the new and impressive ways they use to avoid using the “C” word in its statements and press conferences has become my latest guilty pleasure. My favorite moment was when in a recent press conference, a State department spokesperson’s reply to the question if the US has determined whether or not what happened in Egypt is a coup was, “we have determined we don’t need to make a determination.” Read that sentence again. Admire its beauty. It’s glorious.

Even after the violent disbursement of Rabaa and the clashes that day with Morsi/MB supporters and its death toll, which surpasses the daily death toll in a country like Syria at its worse day, the US still refuses to use the C word or cut the aid. The only thing they have been doing is push for a political solution to the problem, which would have to involve a reconciliation or truce deal with the MB, because it doesn’t want instability and would like us to help make the U.S. relationship with our country continue to make them look good or not embarrass them, which a)we are not doing at all and b) doesn’t seem to be one of our priorities, and the worst thing they came up with as a response was to cancel a joint military exercise. What’s worse is that they are bending over backwards for Egypt, despite facing media and political scrutiny for it, and they are not getting any leverage or credit for it. The friction we are seeing are simply the byproduct of a renegotiation of the terms of the special relationship Egypt has with the US, and the Egyptian government is initiating it. It’s that simple.

 

  1. There is no Giant global conspiracy against us

There really isn’t a global conspiracy against us; Europe is concerned because of the death and the overthrow and jailing of a “democratically elected” President, but they will not move beyond being concerned. Even in the UN Security Council’s special session on Egypt, the statement admitted that both sides of the conflict (i.e. government and MB) are using violence and called for mutual de-escalation. This means the UN is not buying the “peaceful warriors for democracy” narrative that the MB is producing, but also cannot condone the almost 700 dead in one day of conflict either, because it is a horrifying and indefensible number, so they went the route of balance. They are not happy with the high death toll and they will not condone it forever, which is important if you would like their tourists back, and you should: your economy needs it.

That being said, Turkey and Qatar are truly against us, so is any and every branch of the MB the world over, so you are not being completely paranoid here. I also hear that Iran and the Taliban are not pleased with us either. It is ok though, I think we can afford that.

 

  1. The International media isn’t in the MB’s pockets

Egyptian social media is filled with posts, pictures and videos that either a) hate the biased international coverage, or b) is comprised of videos or images with a message that we share this in order to “show the international media” the truth. The reason? The perception that international opinion provides excessive support for the MB, which develops at times to the belief that the international media is in the MB’s pockets. Their proof? The lack of coverage of the MB’s violent acts and that they are portrayed as peaceful protesters getting killed by the state. “Why is no one supporting us?” They protest, in complete denial that this is primarily their own fault. Oh yes. It’s true.

You see, in order for the international media to showcase your side of the story, you actually have to have a side of the story. Your new state needs to have a solid case why it overthrew the old one, which , fyi, is not being made in anywhere. For example local media, instead of doing pieces that document and explain why the population revolted against Morsi and his rule, is instead going with a simplistic narrative of nationalism vs. terrorism, and doing a remarkable job sensationalizing it. If they have zero intentions of being unbiased, which seems to be the case, they should try to explain and set in stone why the MB rule was undemocratic and criminal. It is not hard: An investigative piece on all the people arrested/killed/maimed by the police or MB during the Morsi reign, a 5 minutes video showcasing the attacks on Christians or the disdain for religion cases, a report on every single journalist or media personality that got persecuted by the Morsi presidency or their supporters, a short documentary stating all of the violations and crimes that the Morsi regimes committed, or maybe explaining the perils of theocracy and why we should never ever toy with its idea again. Hell, a simple you tube video explaining how we got here and what are the lessons learned will do at this point, and no one is doing it locally. Imagine what effects it could have on the international level.

To make matters worse, we are naturally engaging in our favorite national pastime of xenophobia, and are therefore becoming increasingly hostile to foreign journalists, who by the way are getting harassed, beaten and killed while doing their job. And naturally they find that the safest place for them to operate is within the marches of the pro Morsi protesters, because they actually want them to tell their side of the story, and are not projecting their own feelings of disappointment or anger towards them, like the June 30 crowd does. Also, foreign media journalists are more likely to cover protests in Cairo than cover what’s going on in the governorates, where Morsi supporters crimes are apparent, so all they see is clashes with protesters, from the side of the MB, and this is what they report.

Here is how you can remedy this: 1) Make your case clear, and it cannot simply be the MB are terrorists or criminals- detailed concise arguments would be nice, 2) Utilize every chance you get to make the case, and don’t waste an opportunity to do so. The Mostafa Hegazy presser today was a perfect example of a wasted opportunity, where he had all the media’s attention, and instead of making the case against the MB using videos, images, details, names and facts, he opted for generalized narrative. The man is an excellent speaker and handedly survived a very hostile press conference, but he should ‘have made the case and provided proof. Someone has to.

Finally, 3) BE NICE TO FOREIGN JOURNALISTS. If you keep attacking or insulting them, they have every incentive to not listen to you. Stop your xenophobia and embrace them as people who are simply trying to do their job in a very dangerous situation, instead of being part of the danger against them. If the people won’t do it, then the state should. Why aren’t foreign journalists being embedded with security forces during dangerous situation? This way they can finally tell if a) the police started the attack or the Morsi supporters and b) if the other side is armed, because it will be shooting in their direction. Simple things, really, but they will make a difference. It ‘is a war of narrative, and the MB are helping the narrative writers in every way they can, and you are either insulting them, demonizing them or attacking them. Not very smart, no?

 

  1. The War on Terror will not end this way

There is a reason why everyone is wary of the “war on terror” narrative, for a very simple reason: Wars on concepts cannot be called wars, because wars end and wars on terror don’t. You see, wars on concepts or ideas definitely do not end with bullets, they end with a counter idea that exposes or defeats the idea. What is your counter idea to Islamism/MB ideology? Whoever does not agree with you is a traitor and should be killed? Yeah, not a very good one, especially against Islamists, who are generally ok with dying for their beliefs.

So you can go ahead and think you can kill your way out of this conflict, and you may succeed to end all major confrontations with a high body count within the month (and become known as butchers for it).However, sooner rather than later you will start facing incidents that pop up everywhere, with a few dying here in an explosion, and a few dying there in a drive-by shooting, and it will not stop and you will never be safe. It will not always be the MB behind the killings, but rather the family members/friends of the non-MB Morsi supporter who got killed in one of the clashes / jailed for wanting to defend his vote and sees you stealing it and persecuting him for it.

The danger of what ‘is happening is not the MB going underground and starting a terror campaign, but that those supporters or their family members get radicalized to such a degree that he/she will resort to random violence. And in case you haven’t noticed, the MOI , besides being indefensibly ruthless in their actions, it ‘is also not in the best to fight this or provide the minimum semblance of security. Exhibit A) the burnt churches. Exhibit B) the burnt museums. Exhibit C) Their own police stations that they can’t defend and Exhibit D) your neighborhood where you no longer feel secure.

So please, start demanding a clear strategy to manage this conflict and the security situation, and don’t feel ashamed to do so, since this is your life and future we are talking about. Also, if people tell you the strategy is to eradicate them, please remind them that if the MB are only 80,000 people., Not only will it take a genocide to kill them all, you will also have to kill their friends and relatives, which is a whole lot of killing, and that is if we discount that there is the internet, where ideas can live forever. So, while its prudent to face those who use violence against you with violence, it is imperative not to help them recruit or win supporters. While many of the police are engaging in life or death battles and heroics to protect you, many of them act in a criminal manner and we should be able to hold them to account. Your best weapon against the MB is to create the state that they could not create, one of diversity, accountability, human rights, civilian rule and against corruption and nepotism. Only such an idea can one day end this war.

60 Comments on 4 common Misconceptions Egyptians have

  1. Shadi Al Kinanny
    August 18, 2013 at 12:31 pm

    Good article and sound arguments, but may I question one of your misconceptions? Although I completely agree with you that the US lacks a cohesive foreign policy regarding Egypt, its legal conundrum is slightly misleading. From a US legal perspective, how was 25/1 (deposing Mubarak) different from 30/06 (deposing Morsi)? The only difference I find (besides the increased numbers in 30/06) is that the former installed a military general (Tantawi) as the head of state, as opposed to the Supreme Court Chief in the latter case, shouldn’t the US have faced a bigger problem in 2011?
    I offer an addendum to your hypothesis, perhaps the US has pre-paid the MB for various concessions that it is eager to be delivered. You must admit that there is a clear dichotomy between the US and Israeli view of the MB. (Afterall, it was AIPAC that persuaded Congress not to suspend aid to Egypt.) Is it not possible that US pragmatism has found an obedient partner in the MB and would therefore like to ensure that they remain as part of the Egyptian political landscape?

    Just a thought…

    Reply
    • Marazek7
      August 18, 2013 at 1:05 pm

      A very logical and sensible question . In fact many people , more than you would ever think , agree to your question , or rather ……..your theory .
      To many average Egyptians , this theory is the only explanation for ,this American , diplomatically wrapped up hysteria , about Egypt .

      Reply
      • Helen El Sayed
        August 18, 2013 at 2:23 pm

        The belief of the U.S. needing the M.B. for their own purposes has substance. It can be summarised in one word, i.e. Israel.
        Say no more.

        Reply
        • John.Frank
          August 18, 2013 at 7:57 pm

          Ah ….no. The U.S. support for Islamist parties in the Middle East and North Africa is based on a counter terrorism strategy and political view which is based on certain assumptions:

          - If we support Islamist parties taking power that publicly eschew violence, these parties will by necessity have to “moderate” to govern.

          - If we encourage Islamist parties to get involved in the political process and abandon violence, this will reduce the amount of violence.

          - Given the ties that Islamist parties have to the violent Islamist groups, these parties will be better able to control these groups.

          - In turn, this will reduce the risk of terror attacks against U.S interests.

          The one year rule of former President Morsi, along with the response of the Muslim Brotherhood to his removal from office has blown a huge whole in a number of these assumptions.

          In dealing with “non-violent” Islamist groups, the Americans are left with a counter terrorism view that if we “appease” the “non-violent” Islamists in the Middle East, they will refrain from attacking us.

          This mistaken view point stems in part from the disastrous domestic outreach policies of the Obama administration towards the most extremist Islamic groups in American society which has had the side effect of blinding domestic counter terrorism activities.

          So, American policy under the Obama administration for dealing with the Islamists has been to use drones and special forces to kill all the “violent” Islamists”, (ie Islamists who reject the political process), while appeasing all the “non-violent” Islamists (i.e. Islamists who embrace the political proces, even if this means one person, one vote, one time while leading to the imposition of a religious fascist state that will come back and bite the Americans).

          Clearly, this policy approach has failed; and many outside observers felt that this approach was bound to fail.

          Whether the Obama administration is prepared to learn the lessons from what has transpired in the Middle East and North Africa over the last two years is an open question.

          While Hillary Clinton, one of the key architects of this failed approach is no longer Secretary of State, the remaining key architects of this approach, John Brennan (Presidential Counter terrorism adviser to CIA Director and Samantha Power (Senior adviser to former Secretary of State Clinton to U.N. Ambassador) were rewarded with promotions after Obama’s re-election; and Susan Rice, despite having blatantly lied to the American public over the cause of the Benghazi attack, while insulting the Libyan President, all for purely political purposes was kept on, moving UN Ambassador to becoming Obama’s National Security Adviser.

          As to Israel, Israel and Egypt signed a peace treaty. Remember that? Would Egyptians prefer war?

          One of these days Egytians are going to have to confront the antisemitism and Holocaust Denial that is rampant in Egyptian society.

          http://www.wnd.com/2013/07/ex-spy-chief-how-kgb-created-islamic-jihad/

          - and -

          http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2013/07/09/ex-soviet-bloc-spy-chief-explains-hidden-origin-todays-jihad/

          If people want to blame Egypt’s problems on Israel, go ahead …. but at this juncture, given all the economic and problems that Egypt is facing that is really a waste of time:

          http://www.arabnews.com/arab-spring-and-israeli-enemy

          If anyone thinks that the Israelis were happy with the election of Morsi as Egypt’s President, think again. The Israeli concern is straight forward. Will whomever comes to power honor the peace treaty that exists between Israel and Egypt?

          While Egyptians are unhappy with the restrictions in the peace treaty over military access to the Sinai, from an Israeli perspective, they would have to see significant changes in Egyptian society, i.e. an end to rampant antisemitism and Holocaust denial, along with acceptance of Israel as a Jewish state, before they would agree to a change, based on the simple premise of “trust but verify;” since the Israelis can not afford to be fooled.

          Reply
          • Gary
            August 19, 2013 at 1:43 pm

            Thank you John, at lst a resonable response….

        • Daniel
          August 20, 2013 at 7:49 am

          Right now, the Israeli government is a huge SUPPORTER of the egyptian military. It’s actually for a good reason, because we need them not to start a war against us. So far, it’s working. The military is honoring the peace treaty and asking each and every time before moving troops into the Sinai, and we give permission each time. In return, they are working to ensure that there is no spillover into Israel.

          All over the world, there are headlines about how supportive the Israeli government is of the Egyptian military. You must not have noticed, because there is no way the MB would be very helpful to Israel after we supported the military.

          Reply
          • Yaeli
            August 20, 2013 at 9:36 am

            The Israeli military and Egyptian military have long had a good working relationship, countering threats that threaten both our countries –the Muslim Brotherhood (with their spin-off group Hamas) was one of those threats, as is the influx of massive weapons to terrorist groups in the Sinai who are equally happy to attack Israel as to attack Egyptian interests (military, supplies, Egypt’s gas pipelines).

            Israel would like to see a strong and prosperous Egypt that is at peace with us. It is a shame that, even though we’ve had a peace treaty for more than 30 years, we’ve got less economic cooperation between us than Israel has with Jordan, with whom we forged a peace agreement only in the mid-90s. It is hard to forge mutually beneficial economic ties with people who believe that a shark that attacked tourists was an Israeli-spy-trained-shark engaging in a Zionist plot to harm Egyptian tourism, however.

            For decades anti-semitism has been fanned and kept alive in Egypt in order to distract the masses from the real troubles in the country affecting their daily lives and to keep them quiescent. The Muslim Brotherhood, under Morsi, started stepping up that rhetoric as the people became ever more restive that changes were not being made to make daily life better. The one good thing that may have come from all this upheaval is that that tactic no longer seems to work to keep the masses in line.

            Perhaps this is the first step toward countering the rampant and illogical antisemitism and focusing instead on real fixes for the problems afflicting the Egyptian people. My dearest hope is that one day in the not distant future we will see a proud and prospering Egypt standing in peace with a proud and prosperous Israel, with economic, social, and cultural cooperation and exchanges mutually beneficial to all.

    • Some dude
      August 18, 2013 at 2:52 pm

      Two major differences:
      1) no one really believed in Mubarak’s electoral legitimacy, while they did believe Morsi’s. For them the fact that his approval may have dipped below majority is irrelevant (Bush was in the low 20′s%). And the “abuse of powers” argument is voided because they believe the army is abusing it just as much, if not more.
      2) in Mubarak’s case, he got on TV and stepped down, yielding to the SCAF. In Morsi’s case, Sisi got on TV and listed his “actions”.

      Reply
      • tamer
        August 18, 2013 at 2:58 pm

        Really…ur going to make comparisons with US politicians…there is a huge difference. First, as much as I disagreed with Bush, he was no dictator. Do you have any idea what was happening under Morsi?? That’s why I and millions of Egyptians were ready to regain our true path to freedom. Come on….we don’t have appeachment here….the military was the only tool to do so because three more years and it could have been too late to remove ongoing brotherhood presidencies.

        Reply
        • Kassandra
          August 19, 2013 at 10:46 pm

          Lordy, lordy. Why did you brave and democratic and secular
          and liberal Egyptians let Mubarak ramble on for 30 years? Why didn’t “the people” who even made the military quake in their boots take the old geezer out? Yet you expected Mursi to work miracles in one year?
          Why don’t you confront the Mubarak-appointed Judiciary? Or maybe the iron grip that the Junta has on the Egyptian economy? Or is it forbidden to mention the 30 percent of the economy that your hallowed Junta controls?
          You people are delusional.

          Reply
      • Negm
        August 19, 2013 at 9:32 am

        Well, Mubarak did not actually step down on TV. Omar Suleiman resigned for him. We don’t know the exact details of how that took place.

        Reply
    • Hani Bushra
      August 18, 2013 at 2:54 pm

      I think that difference lies in the fact that Morsi through what is perceived to be a fair and clean election, while Mubarak didn’t.

      Reply
    • Ayman
      August 18, 2013 at 5:37 pm

      Legally speaking, Mubarak was not deposed by the military. His vice president clearly stated that Mubark himself resigned and appointed the SCAF to rule the country. Mubarak never denied this during any of the talks or trial he gave afterwards. So it was not a coup.

      Reply
    • Alaa
      August 19, 2013 at 8:35 am

      Because Mubarak was never democratically elected. Morsy was (that doesn’t make morsy a democrat, but there’s no denying he won clean elections. Even the army says so.)

      Reply
      • Amani
        August 19, 2013 at 4:58 pm

        Clean elections when people in the countryside could not got to polling stations because of the gas being sold in Elarish? Clean elections when the army was not able to implement the obligatory vote they had first decided?

        Reply
    • some odd person
      August 20, 2013 at 9:15 am

      in my perspective the only reason the u.s actually cares about us is because they want to control us exhibit a) they already control what weapons we buy and dont buy since the majority our weapons are made there and also they constantly send aids to our army b) they are always with whatever is going on in the country or what they find successful at the moment because if they really want our stability then go look at Afghanistan first or some other country it already ruined

      Reply
      • A dude in the US
        August 20, 2013 at 6:46 pm

        We really don’t want to control Egypt. We don’t understand your country, and it seems uncontrollable even by people that do understand your country (Morsi, Mubarak etc.).
        The US is not an empire now, never was in the past, and won’t ever be in the future.

        Reply
    • Amr Gemal
      August 22, 2013 at 1:41 am

      Did god sent us to this earth for obeying unjust people, whether it be Kings, Sheikhs, Military Dictators, Police Chiefs and Judges or was the purpose was to become better humans, obey him and enjoy a good life?

      Certainly it wasn’t the obeying of unjust people specially if they are puppets and cronies.

      Was the blood that was spilt in ousting Mubarak useless blood? or did it belong to people who were loose change that can be thrown away if it seemed heavier for carrying?

      If no, then, it should be avenged.

      Is Liberty cheap and we can wait for another two hundred years more to get it, like since the time when Napoleon was in Egypt at the start of 18th century? Or is it to be had right now?

      If Liberty is to be gotten right now and the answer is yes, then REMEMBER, that the Military, Police and the Judges all are expendable and new Military can be trained later, new Policemen can be sent to the academies for training and new honest and god-fearing lawyers can be trained to become judges.

      So let us start by killing each and every military personnel, killing every policeman and killing every judge.

      But how can we approach the Military, Police and Judges of higher ranks?

      Go after the lowest rank possible and if you are afraid to kill the adult then simply get hand on their children, kill the bad seed and the parent will come.
      They will abandon their duties and post to come home to protect their families and hence the higher authorities will be left without any protection.

      And if you can’t even touch their children then go after the relatives including brothers, sisters, parents, niece, nephews, uncles and aunts of these lowly military men, policemen and the the lowest ranking judiciary officials.

      Once these people start getting killed, all the right minded and timid Military personnel, Policeman and Judicial staff will start coming to our cause and start killing the genuine culprits. It is understandable that a large number of innocent people would be killed, but it is worth the numbers if in the end there is a just and workable society where everyone knows that you can easily get killed if you take unjustice to unreasonable proportion. And this killing of unjust people by anonymous strangers will have to continue for a number of years so that
      everyone knows that unlawful and illegal behaviour costs you and your dear ones their lives.

      Even if a million men get killed (the whole of military, police and judges and judicial staff) it is a small price to pay for an eternity of just and equitable society, and the happy society that will result in the aftermath.

      Reply
  2. Nihal
    August 18, 2013 at 12:55 pm

    Can you in your next post discus HOW to create the state ” that they could not create, one of diversity, accountability, human rights, civilian rule and against corruption and nepotism”. You are talking about a process that could take decades, so in the meantime, what are your thoughts about how to deal with the immediate situation, the violence perpetrated by the MB and the general lawlessness.

    Reply
    • Some dude
      August 18, 2013 at 2:56 pm

      I would hope it also addresses the gross abuse of human rights by the army, especially the mass detentions and shooting of protesters.

      Reply
  3. Omar
    August 18, 2013 at 1:12 pm

    Great article. But due to the fact the most Egyptians don’t read English, and most of them need to read this, I think you should also right it in Arabic.

    Reply
  4. Svetlana
    August 18, 2013 at 1:38 pm

    The article has four parts, and they are all number 1, for some reason.

    Reply
  5. Gosto Tothiwim
    August 18, 2013 at 1:43 pm

    The concept of the existence of a caring god is thoroughly countered every day, to no avail with the masses.

    Morsi’s “democratically-elected” government was not even remotely representative. The MB will not be accepted as an equal participant in truly representative government until they disavow any right to impose religion on any person or to impose an Islamic government.

    Charlatans of every stripe, both greedy exploiters and power-mongering self-proclaimed zealots, are seeking to use the current instability to further their own personal interests. The rule of law can only be reestablished and maintained by the underlings of the rich, since the zealots will never have the vision or courage to acknowledge that religious imposition is a crime. The zealots’ insistence on establishing an Islamic state and imposing their beliefs makes them the enemy of everyone else.

    Reply
  6. John
    August 18, 2013 at 1:53 pm

    So 33 million people that protested wasnt enough of a “solid case” ?

    Reply
    • Some dude
      August 18, 2013 at 2:54 pm

      Problem with protester arithmetic is that it’s usually off by an order of magnitude, and it’s not a bounded question. When you vote, you know exactly how many people voted and what they voted for. When you protest, you don’t know how many people protested, and you don’t know what they’re asking for.

      So, assuming the 33 million is correct (which is bull-shit), how can you prove they all wanted the Army to step in and crack-down on and dissolve the Brotherhood? In fact most of the activists that organized the protests are now speaking up against the Army’s actions

      Reply
  7. Marazek7
    August 18, 2013 at 1:54 pm

    My previous comment was made responding to Shadi Al Kinanny’s question about what he considers a form of partnership between the US and the MB .
    As for the article , it really is an excellent one . Hope it is translated to Arabic and distributed among frustrated and bewildered Egyptian media staff .

    Reply
  8. Why do you need to know that?
    August 18, 2013 at 1:59 pm

    Did you have a cock in your mouth when you wrote this? Geeze!

    Reply
  9. K M
    August 18, 2013 at 4:44 pm

    You have completely misread the intentions of the US. Linking AIPAC to MB is farcical at best. This gullible belief will serve your puppet masters well.

    Reply
  10. Ken from Austin, TX
    August 18, 2013 at 5:26 pm

    First of all, the USA gives Egypt one billion US dollars every year for rent on the Suez Canal. US warships travel through the Suez Canal free of charge. Stop thinking of it that one billion dollars as aid. It is rent. As long as the Egyptian military keeps the Suez Canal open for commerce, there will be little more than silence from US authorities about how Egypt governs itself. Any threats you may hear from ill informed US representatives about withdrawal of that rent should not be taken seriously as long as the Canal itself is not threatened.

    Second, there is a weakness in modern Islam theology in that it does not clearly denounce murder in the name of Islam. Free speech is sacred in the USA. For example, I can denounce Christianity or Islam in the USA without fear of repression. Americans will defend free speech with their lives. That is something that must be learned and accepted in the Middle East. I think free speech should be protected by force. If modern Islam can learn to protect free speech and freedom of religion, then a lot of destruction and premature death could be avoided.

    Third, I’m glad to see you back on line Sand Monkey. I think you may have been intimidated by Morsi and his Muslim followers. If your police and military initiated tactics that allowed your voice to be heard once again, then I think their cause is just.

    This is not a war against Islam. It is a war for freedom of religion and free speech. Egyptians should not only be prepared to die for these freedoms. They should also be willing to kill for them. As long as the Egyptian military takes action to protect those freedoms, their actions should not be judged too harshly.

    Reply
    • Kassandra
      August 19, 2013 at 11:45 pm

      Yeah Ken, the only good Moooslim is a dead Moooslim.

      Reply
  11. John Smith
    August 18, 2013 at 5:38 pm

    Thanks for the article. I have some comments of the points:
    1. The U.S is sometimes with June 30 and sometimes against June 30. They don’t care if there is sharia law in Egypt, they don’t REALLY care if its people are being oppressed and massacred. As long as the country is stable and the relationship with Israel is ok.

    2. The MB has a very effective propaganda machine worldwide, only recently has the Egyptian military started to counter this. So while the media is not in their pockets, it is flooded by their propaganda.

    Reply
    • fawzia marei
      August 20, 2013 at 8:47 pm

      ! agree with John Smith, quote 2 that the Egyptian rulers ought to consolidate a worldwide effective propaganda machine. Then instead of questioning everything and remaining on the defensive, Egypt, can make her aspirations known loud and clear for th world to understand. I also agree with the person who suggested that in times of trouble foreign journalists should be Embedded.

      Reply
  12. Bob
    August 18, 2013 at 6:38 pm

    The basic premise that the freedom fighters are “terrorist” is false… therefore the entire article is a waste of ink… don’t waste ur time reading this BS

    Reply
    • Amani
      August 18, 2013 at 8:26 pm

      If anyone wanted to know what an internet troll is, it is someone who has nothing to say and is full of hate. Spare your typing effort next time!

      Reply
  13. allcoppedout
    August 18, 2013 at 8:41 pm

    Situations around the world seem to make little sense. Wish I could help, but I know the silver bullet is missing. Not sure the post is right, but it makes a lot of sense. The more I learn the more I know most of history is rubbish and we are short of freedom everywhere. Democracy voting in a dictatorship in useless, but nowhere do we vote for democratic foreign policy. I have no vote worth having in the UK.

    Reply
  14. Sys_Config
    August 18, 2013 at 9:49 pm

    Fantastic article..
    There was enough info out there on horrendous persecutions of non muslims in Egypt, lots of videos could have been made. but the mainstream news in furtherance of the WH policy that the MB “moderates” which is the same thing as a tiger without its stripes, is the wave of the future. The tiger already bit it in Libya with Benghazi, and h the assasinations of journalists..It is is obviously no democracy and now a no mans land..
    40 percent of money earned in Egypt goes to food..and people were seeing higher prices for food..bread basics.. and going hungry, and jobs so scarce , going to MB people.
    More importantly..Making a parallel army in hiding did not go unnoticed by the Military. For the first time..Peoples will and Miltary will coincided..and their destiny is their hands now..not what we would like them to be…but thank goodness they are not what they could have been..if the MB continued expansionist policy..
    to involve it in Syria as Morsi and the West wanted..

    Elections dont nourish, pats on the back dont nourish, bullets dont nourish, promises dont nourish..and people were sick of it. Foreigners keep talking platitudes of the democracy…the fact is…on the world stage….if you want to evoke fear on a small sovereign nation… threaten it with democracy..

    Reply
    • Ken from Austin, TX
      August 19, 2013 at 12:03 pm

      “Elections dont nourish, pats on the back dont nourish, bullets dont nourish, promises dont nourish..and people were sick of it. Foreigners keep talking platitudes of the democracy…the fact is…on the world stage….if you want to evoke fear on a small sovereign nation… threaten it with democracy..”

      Democracy isn’t magic. Bumping your head on the floor five times a day isn’t magic either. Egypt has fallen into a state of disrepair and despair. It isn’t the Arab Spring. It is the Arab fall. Winter is fast approaching. The West didn’t decide that Mubarak had to go. Egypt decided that. The West didn’t decide that Morsi had to go. Egypt decided that. Right or wrong, Egypt is deciding it’s own destiny. Civilizations come and go. When they fail, they blame everyone but themselves.

      Egypt may fail. If it does, it won’t be because people on this side of the planet care enough about people on that side of the planet to offer some suggestions.

      Reply
    • Kassandra
      August 19, 2013 at 11:59 pm

      Sys, how about a few comments on the 30 percent of the Egyptian economy that the military controls, Among special privileges they get is special prices on raw materials, the use of conscripts as free labor. The military did well manipulating the availability of gasoline and blaming it on Mursi.
      I’ve never seen such fawning over the military as there is among the “educated and secular” in Egypt since North Korea, or maybe Hitler’s Germany. Enjoy your new dictatorship.

      Reply
  15. Ava
    August 19, 2013 at 3:15 pm

    I like your final sentence very much : Your best weapon against the MB is to create the state that they could not create, one of diversity, accountability, human rights, civilian rule and against corruption and nepotism. Only such an idea can one day end this war.

    Reply
  16. Nevine Loutfy
    August 19, 2013 at 7:27 pm

    You are clearly not fully informed or don’t get to watch much local media…there are endless shows analyzing to death directly and through their guests why the people revolted and not as you say are simply repeating nationalistic slogans…if you need a special session, happy to provide it… Xenophobia??? Clearly you don’t know this country very well, it’s one of the few where nationals come second to Westerners… If you continue to ignore the bias and a mysterious agenda we cannot understand you will never figure out why we feel the way we do…I am personally appalled at the explanation you give about the foreign media, you so simply blame it on our media, correction we don’t expect the foreign media to plagiarize, as they go and camp out in the MB sit in’s they don’t look for the majority of us. When CNN calls Rabea Tahrir on its screen when France 24 calls Tahrir Rabea, one has to wonder! Lastly it’s not for us to understand why the West is doing what it’s doing, it should be the other way around… They cannot continue to impose their way of thinking when they are supposedly trying to help solve our problem, one more time it should be the other way around… One day when I have more time, I will send you the 4 big misconceptions the West has about Egypt, maybe you will understand how we think not how you want us to think

    Reply
  17. Jeff
    August 19, 2013 at 8:51 pm

    I would also say that the question of “coup” or not is not 100% clear.

    If there is any truth to the idea that Morsi was himself transitioning away from democracy and acting as a dictator, slowly seizing power away from democratic institutions, then overthrowing him is part of the process of RESTORING democracy.

    Hitler was elected too. That didn’t make him a democratic leader.

    Let’s change the facts a bit to make it clearer: If Morsi had openly seized all power and declared himself ruler for life and THEN the army overthrew him and called new elections, would it STILL be a coup? Would Morsi STILL have been a “democratic leader”?

    The ultimate question is: What will the army do?

    Will it try to reestablish a military government permanently? Or will it try to restore a TRUE democracy, in which the Islamists cannot seize the state by means of democratic tools?

    If a, it’s a coup in the full sense of the word. If b, then it’s not or at least ARGUABLY not.

    So I think the Obama administration is right–and not just on pragmatic grounds but legal ones–for putting off an aid cut off.

    Reply
  18. Sahar
    August 19, 2013 at 9:53 pm

    Who died on the day the police and military dispersed the sit-ins?? They are all Egyptians! and if you consider that 70 of those 600 who died were police officers some of them high-ranking, you should consider what kind of weapons those so -called “peaceful” sit-ins had!! Can you imagine if the military had used their weapons how many would have actually died?? We have all seen several videos of how some of the demonstrators killed people walking next to them then walking away!!

    As for conspiracy, actually it is a plan that Condolezza Rice had openly stated where they would like to see “creative chaos” in the Middle East. Look at the name they gave in the beginning “Arab Spring” to make us believe that what is going on is actually “good”. Don’t forget that many western countries are harbouring and giving refuge to terrorist and in most cases, as we all know. have even created the “monsters” themselves who later on turned against them. Morsi and Ikhwan were very convenient for them because they are ready to make deals because Egypt to them is just a tool. We all saw how Egypt’s map was clipped off “Halayeb and Shalateen”, he gave president release to terrorists and weapon smugglers who were heavily sentenced in prison. He was ready to host people from Gaza in Sinai to solve their problem with Sinai.
    Egypt’s military is the only powerful military in the region, after the destruction of Iraq and Syria and that was part of Morsi’s and Ikhwan plan.

    Reply
    • Nem
      August 20, 2013 at 12:29 pm

      Out of curiosity what happens to the police & military officers who refuse to follow through with the orders of their commanders? You know the ones w/ a conscience? I haven’t heard of any of them being fired, arrested, or court-martialed…. Just been hearing a lot of deaths.. I mean when you have an organization who’s killed over a 1000 people & 1000s more injured in 5 days (the number’s for sure higher), have no problem burning a mosque down w/ the dead & injured inside… Well you can’t really trust them can you? If they’re able to do all that in cold blood and free themselves from guilt.. What’s gonna stop them from killing their own men? Or burn down churches for that matter? Just saying..

      Of course Allah wa 3alem & of course there are those supporting the MB who are extremists & most likely have taken part in all of this madness. But I find it a miracle that there hasn’t been a single report of an officer, whether police or military, who has been against what’s been happening (as far as I know).

      Reply
  19. Sahar
    August 19, 2013 at 10:13 pm

    As for US 1.3 billion Aid to the military, besides the fact that Egypt spends around 7 billion dollars a month in general, and that it is a part of the Camp David treaty, it is not even handed over to us cash to spend as we wish. It actually mostly goes back to USA since all military equipment are made in USA creating many job opportunities in the arms and ammunition field in the USand the AID money is actually held at a trust fund in USA. Moreover, keeping such a relation is crucial to USA since this way they are able to access all the military information they need about Egypt. If they cut it, we will seek it elsewhere!! Thus, this is not a threatening card by all means!

    Reply
  20. Muhammad
    August 20, 2013 at 9:29 am

    I disagree and for many reasons that are proven strategically and logically. First, the US is totally supporting the MB regime in Egypt because if a big plan that was pre-ogranized between before they rule which can be summarized into two important points 1- Sinai was an important part of the deal to migrate most of Palestines and Hamas into it therefore leave Israel with total control over the remaining land in Gaza later initiating the well known dirty plan of the US government which to allow these terrorist to initiate terrorist attacks from Egyptian soil in Sinai on Israel increasing the tension on the boarders hence allowing US to do what it does best like in Iraq and Afghanistan which is a military strike and building infrastructure. ” Read more about Zionists” and you will get the picture. 2- US government is benefiting way much more from their aid as Egypt facilitates strategical movement of their military troops through Suez canal to Afghanistan and Iraq and if Egypt cuts off this channel they will have to go all the way around Africa continent to the Persian Gulf which will it take lots of expenses and time. 3- The Middle East is a big market for Arms deal with appearance of Russia and China in the market is a big threat on their market penetration. Regarding, the media, which is also part of this Zionist plan such as CNN and Jazirah lately, are subsidized and funded by secret organizations for example George Soros, i believe you know who is George Soros? If you dont, i recommend that you read more about him and his project in the Middle East “Freedom House” and “Open Society” with Peter Akerman which Baradei basha was part of it. Please come on! do think the US is looking for our benefit? By the way Recently, Israel government are backing our military movement and asking US not to cut the military aid not because of the love of us but because obviously their dirty plan is exposed and they only way to keep pressure on Egyptian military is with US aid and at the same time not to cancel Camp David Treaty!

    Reply
    • Yaeli
      August 20, 2013 at 10:03 am

      Dude, drinking the kool-aid much?

      Reply
      • Ken from Austin, TX
        August 20, 2013 at 1:17 pm

        “Dude, drinking the kool-aid much?”

        I know, they are so gullible! Egyptian cops attack western journalists over fear of what they might tell westerners. Egyptians think EVERYONE is as gullible as they are. Egyptians, like the MB, can’t stand the idea of letting other religions have their say ( gullible masses might be swayed in the wrong direction.) On another website I read another gullible Egyptian suggest it was all a CIA plot.

        From June 1st to June 30th the Egyptian stock market fell 19.8%. US stock markets fell 5.1% and then bounced back up some for an ending loss of about 3.5%. Saudi markets jumped up 4.8% by June 30th. It’s up 11.1% today (from June 1st.) Conclusion: if there is unrest in the middle east, buy Saudi stock.

        For Egyptians who don’t know what the kool-aid story is about. It’s about a US Christian preacher who led his followers down to South America and then had them drink kool-aid laced with poison. It’s a story of what happens to gullible people.

        Reply
        • Yaeli
          August 20, 2013 at 9:03 pm

          Ken, while you make good points it is also important to recognize that not all Egyptians are kool-aid drinkers. Far from it. Ten years ago I was a starry-eyed, utterly unrealistic lefty (sipping at a different kool-aid and ineffectually crooning kumbah yah) and it is largely due to the Sandmonkey and other friendships forged in Egypt, Lebanon and the Palestinian territories, along with getting bitch-slapped with lived reality, that shook some sense into me. I give the Sandmonkey huge credit for dragging me, thankfully but kicking and screaming the whole way, into pragmatic, real-world land.

          Reply
  21. A message to General Al Sisi.
    August 27, 2013 at 10:33 am

    All this is bollocks .

    A message to General Al Sisi.
    After your extraordinary courage and resilience egypt has, momentarily , saved itself total annihilation of the sort incurred upon Iraq and Syria . The reason i say momentarily , is that the same interests of the transatlantics will continue to pose the catastrophic threat to our country. They will use every method to hire foreign and Indigenous mercenaries, to repeat the same scenario of the Ikhwan, who knows with what magnitude the next time. They will sprinkle their mercenaries everywhere in egypt , and require them to summon your great military establishment, in front of the transatlantic Ecclesiastical Courts, who will render it politically void , thus getting the same verdict like that of Mubarak and other ex-arab rulers. Those mercenary summoners will have to be put down forever . The way to do it is to quickly work with the whole country of egypt to improve the standards of living of the population,through increased foreign and egyptian investments, and by deploying a more favorable investment environment. Without this quick national program , the impoverished people of egypt, will be an easy target to be seduced into ,most certainly, a more serious national upheaval than the others before . And then the structure of Egypt as a sovereign intact country, will have little strength to maintain itself. The summoners would have succeeded, and the transatlantic Ecclesiastical Courts would have spelled its verdict ; that is welcome Egypt to the fate of Iraq, Syria , Libya and others to follow. To put it in military metaphor , Operation Barbarossa has to be stopped by Operation Bagration .

    Reply
  22. Caroleigh
    September 1, 2013 at 9:54 pm

    The people of the United States are 100 percent behind General Sisi. Every day I read about a member of the M B captured and imprisoned.

    The people of Egypt are lucky they got rid of Morsi. There are many who wish the same could happen here. We are dealing with the worst president the United States has ever had. He is a lethal combination of incompetents and arrogance.

    The man does not know what he is doing. Good luck to all of you. And San monkey, how about an update.

    Reply
  23. The Roofer
    September 2, 2013 at 3:43 pm

    Most of the world’s population just wants Egypt to be a prosperous country that is tolerant of other nations and supports the individual freedoms of its citizens.

    No one wants to see Egypt tear itself apart with political and religious differences.

    Reply
  24. THe KIllers IN THe NAme Of the american dream.
    September 3, 2013 at 8:06 pm

    @ Caroleigh. well the majority of americans had to bear with the ruthless repercussions of raw capitalism some good time now. such an immensely rich country,and a good number of americans have to get along with what meager wages they get. the problem is not with obama,it is with the vampire system itself.

    Reply
  25. caroleigh
    September 4, 2013 at 12:28 pm

    @ killers in the name of the American dream:

    Yes we are an immensely rich country ONLY BECAUSE OF CAPITALISM. Here in America we have the freedoms to pursue our dreams, achieve higher education, create jobs, become leaders. Those receiving meager wages have every chance to advance themselves. If they choose not to it is only THEIR fault. That is the life they have chosen. To eat the fallen crumbs instead of baking the cake.

    A vampire system that you speak of is practiced in the Arab world. The oppression of women, rules and laws that benefit only those in power. A brutal and oppressive ideology, the most retrograde force in existence in the world. Never progressing from the sixth century, Egypt hopefully will find her way to freedoms and true democracy.

    Reply
  26. caroleigh
    September 6, 2013 at 7:25 pm

    Sandmonkey……….. it’s time for you to give us an update. We’re not hearing anything about Egypt anymore. The megalomaniac Obama is center stage, trying to start a World War. Give us an update.

    Reply
  27. THe KIllers IN THe NAme Of the american dream
    September 12, 2013 at 11:51 am

    @ caroleigh , you can most certainly praise america for many things, but not the shacks,homelessnes,poverty,racism and health care.

    Reply
  28. THe KIllers IN THe NAme Of the american dream
    September 12, 2013 at 11:53 am

    And, Oh yes, we never progressed from the 6th century,but you are now taking the world back there. Well done mate.

    Reply
  29. the momentary failure of the of the ecclestiastical courts in egypt;The Americans will never stop creating chaos in Egypt,even at the expense of their short term interest, as they view global chaos as america's long term objective;
    September 12, 2013 at 12:02 pm

    An Urgent Message to General Al Sisi;
    The americans are trying and will always try to destroy egypt and other countries,just like what they are doing is Syria and others. They have a global strategy and they will pursue it at all costs. I will only quote a small paragraph in support of what i am saying .
    QUOTE : “For years, arch-hawk American imperial geostrategist Zbigniew Brzezinski, an intellectual architect of ‘globalization’, has been warning elites across the Western world, and in particular in America, of the emergence and pressing reality of the ‘Global Political Awakening.’ He explains the ‘Awakening’ as essentially the greatest historical challenge to not only American, but global power structures and interests. He explained that, “For the first time in human history almost all of humanity is politically activated, politically conscious and politically interactive.” Further, “the worldwide yearning for human dignity is the central challenge inherent in the phenomenon of global political awakening… That awakening is socially massive and politically radicalizing.” As Brzezinski emphasizes, “These energies transcend sovereign borders and pose a challenge both to existing states as well as to the existing global hierarchy, on top of which America still perches.” Brzezinski and others (as evidenced by the Council on Foreign Relations report) are intent upon developing strategies for ‘managing’ and ‘pacifying’ this ‘Awakening’ in such a way that maintains and secures American imperial interests and global power structures. Thus, the need to ‘control’ the Awakening is the most prescient problem in American foreign policy. However, as Brzezinski elaborated, it is not a challenge that can be dealt with easily:
    The major world powers, new and old, also face a novel reality: while the lethality of their military might is greater than ever, their capacity to impose control over the politically awakened masses of the world is at a historic low. To put it bluntly: in earlier times, it was easier to control one million people than to physically kill one million people; today, it is infinitely easier to kill one million people than to control one million people . “in this dynamically changing world, the crisis of American leadership could become the crisis of global stability.” Thus, from Brzezinski’s point of view, “The only alternative to a constructive American role is global chaos.”Unquote. General Al Sisi, you have to be aware,if you are not yet, that the ameicans are well into their plan for destruction and chaos in the world and the middle east. THE IMPORTANT POINT IS : the americans will partner with the egyptian army as long as the people of egypt will not revolt. The moment there is a major country wide revolution, they will stop their support for the army, and they will start to militarise large segments of the society. Exactly like what happened in Syria. The only way to keep Egypt safe from destruction, is to immediately work for economic progress for the impoverished masses. In this way,you can keep the army intact and keep Egypt as a viable country.

    Reply
  30. THe KIllers IN THe NAme Of the american dream;
    September 12, 2013 at 12:04 pm

    @ caroleigh, did you read the above post ?.

    Reply
  31. Caroleigh
    September 13, 2013 at 1:30 pm

    @ Killers In The Name Of:
    yes, I read it. A very outdated piece of work…… Zbigniew Brzezinski a Polish left-wing Socialist from long ago, and was Jimmy Carter’s “Adviser”, who turned out to be until now, the worst president America ever had. We got rid of both of them in short fashion.
    The next to go will be Obama. He does not represent the American people. He has made a mockery of his presidency. Which was achieved only through affirmative action and illegal voting. Obama wants a radical Islamic Middle East run by the Muslim Brotherhood out of Egypt. He’s giving guns to the MB in Syria, and is so ignorant he doesn’t even know Putin hoodwinked him.

    Reply

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