Adonis Diaries

Posts Tagged ‘Mohamed Morsi

And what Morsi of Egypt SUPPORTERS do? They DELIBERATELY FIRE ON JOURNALISTS COVERING CLASHES

Note: Late Egypt president Mohamed Morsi died last week at 67 while in court. He supposedly was elected and lasted a single year before a military coup led by Sisi “deposed” him. Morsi had no official burying: just attended by his close family members. The State had declared a national curfew and emergency level. Morsi was mourned by the Muslim Brotherhood leaders such as Erdogan of Turkey, Qatar, Hamas Mich3al… Morsi’s wife died also the next day of heart failure: she was his close cousin too.

Reporters Without Borders strongly condemns the actions of President Mohamed Morsi’s supporters who deliberately fired on journalists and attacked them as they were covering last night’s clashes outside the presidential palace in Cairo.

Al-Hosseiny Abu Deif, an experienced newspaper reporter, was rushed to hospital after being hit in the head by a rubber bullet fired at close range at around 1 a.m. today and is said to be in a critical condition.

A witness told Reporters Without Borders that Morsi supporters deliberately targeted Deif, who works for the newspaper Al-Fagr.

Five minutes before Abu Deif was shot from a distance of just two metres, he showed colleagues photos of the president’s supporters with sophisticated weapons.

Abu Deif camera was stolen after he was shot, as colleagues went to his aid.

“Witnesses say the president’s supporters deliberately targeted and attacked journalists. We call on President Morsi to order an investigation into the circumstances of these attacks and to punish those responsible.

As president, he must ensure the safety of all of his fellow citizens, including journalists.

“We also call on the president to rescind the 22 November decree granting himself extraordinary powers, and not hold a referendum on the draft constitution in its current form.

The Constituent Commission must amend the draft in order to provide more protection for freedom of expression and information.”

Other journalists were injured during the night as they covered the clashes.They included :

Mohamed Azouz of the government newspaper Al-Gomhuria,

Osama Al-Shazly of the daily Al-Badil,

Islam Abdel Tawab of Al-Alam Al-Yawm,

Sahar Talaat, a correspondent for Radio France Internationale’s Spanish service and

Ahmed Khair Eldeen, a ON-TV journalist.

Two journalists with Turkey’s TRT television, reporter Mehmet Akif Ersoy and cameraman Adil Ahmet, were attacked earlier yesterday in Tahrir Square and their equipment was damaged.

Read the letter about the Egyptian constitution that was sent to President Morsi yesterday.

Note: Morsi was a strong supporter of Israel, as USA wanted him to be in order to be elected, a farcical election since actually he didn’t get the majority of the votes against his challenger of the former political system. Morsi was supported by Turkey and Qatar and he sided with the exclusion of Syria from the Arab Summits. Morsi was a bad omen for many countries.

Repression Deepens in Egypt

At first it was the Muslim Brotherhood. Now dozens of journalists, non-Islamist activists and students have been detained and beaten.

Sharif Abdel Kouddous  published in The Nation. December 9, 2013

The Abu Zaabal prison complex lies some twenty miles northeast of Cairo, where the dense urban cacophony of the capital quickly gives way to rolling fields, rubbish-strewn canals and small clusters of hastily built red brick buildings.

Outside the main gate—a pair of large metal doors flanked by Pharaonic-themed columns—sit 4 army tanks, their long snouts pointed up and out.

Gehad Khaled, a 20-year-old with an easy laugh and youthful intensity, has been coming to Abu Zaabal on a regular basis for nearly four months to visit her imprisoned husband.

Abdullah Al-Shamy was among hundreds rounded up on August 14, the day security forces violently stormed two sit-ins in Cairo and Giza that formed the epicenter of support for the deposed president, Mohamed Morsi, leaving up to 1,000 people dead.

Rabaa

The front gate of Abu Zaabal, a prison north of Cairo where hundreds of protestors are currently detained (photo by Mosa’ab Elshamy)

Abdullah was at the Rabaa Al-Adeweya sit-in for work. As a correspondent for the satellite news channel Al Jazeera, the 25-year-old journalist had been stationed at the pro-Morsi encampment for six weeks, becoming a familiar face to the channel’s viewers in one of the summer’s biggest international news stories.

Gehad would visit Abdullah at the sit-in, where he was working around the clock.

The two had been married in September 2012, though Abdullah spent little time at home because of regular deployments to countries like Mali, Libya, Ghana and Turkey for Al Jazeera. “The longest period we spent together since we were married was in Rabaa,” she says with a smile.

Now, Gehad sees Abdullah just once every two weeks inside Abu Zaabal, waiting hours each time for a fifteen-minute visit. She brings him food, water, clothes, newspapers, books, toiletries and other necessities to alleviate the austere conditions inside Egypt’s jails.

The prison waiting room is bustling with other families carrying plastic bags and suitcases of supplies.

Children scamper around their parents, women carry babies.

Over the past few months, thousands of Brotherhood members and Morsi supporters have been rounded up and thrown in prison. More than 700 of those arrested in the August 14 raid on Rabaa were imprisoned at Abu Zaabal, and the walls of the waiting room bear the signs of the political divisions that have torn Egypt apart.

Drawings of a hand holding up four fingers, a symbol for Rabaa (Arabic for “four”), are scrawled in felt pen alongside slogans such as “Down with military rule” and “CC the killer,” in reference to army chief Abdul-Fattah el-Sisi, who deposed Morsi on July 3.

Some of the graffiti has been angrily crossed out by family members of prisoners convicted of regular crimes who oppose the Brotherhood.

Similar divisions exist within Gehad’s own family.

Her father is a member of the Muslim Brotherhood and a staunch supporter of Morsi, yet Gehad, who has began protesting the regime since 2008, says she doesn’t support the group and accuses them of abandoning the revolution. (Applying their own brand of religious despotism?)

In what has become an increasingly common phenomenon in Egyptian society, the political cleavages within her family often spilled over into heated disputes, compelling her to refrain from discussing politics with her parents and siblings.

Despite her misgivings about the Brotherhood, Gehad spent a lot of time in the pro-Morsi Rabaa sit-in, not just to see her husband but to be a part of the protest.

“We have been standing against the military since 2011, and we still are now,” she explains. (Actually, the military in Egypt has been ruling for 5 decades and have their own economic and business institutions)

“We didn’t change our position, the Brotherhood did. Now they stand against the military too. We are continuing, and they have joined us.”

Her attitude is not shared by other revolutionary activists who view the Brotherhood not just as political opportunists but as a separate wing of the counterrevolution. These activists point to abuses the Brotherhood committed during their time in power as justification for refusing to join even a tactical alliance with them against the military after the coup.

Abdullah’s younger brother, 23-year-old Mosa’ab, sits next to Gehad in the waiting room. Mosa’ab also spent a significant amount of time in Rabaa, but only in his capacity as a journalist, not as a protester. A talented and intrepid freelance photographer, one of his photographs, from a police attack on the sit-in on July 27 that left dozens dead, was selected as one of Time magazine’s Top Ten Photos of 2013.

Similar divisions plague the Al-Shamy family as well. Mosa’ab says his father, a Brotherhood member, and his eldest brother, Anas, are often a united front arguing vociferously against him, Abdullah and his younger brother, all of whom were more critical of the Brotherhood and Morsi. “It wasn’t pleasant,” Mosa’ab says.

On August 14, the day of the police raids, Mosa’ab was in frequent phone contact with Abdullah as they both covered the carnage unfolding in Rabaa. Their youngest brother, 19-year-old Mohammed, a photographer working for the Turkish news agency Anadolu, was there as well. Mosa’ab and Mohammed left together in the afternoon, not long before security forces had completely moved in and cleared the sit-in.

By nightfall, Mosa’ab found out that Abdullah had been detained, arrested by security forces as he was walking out of Rabaa with Gehad. Nearly four months later, he remains imprisoned, and there have been no significant developments pointing toward his release.

Like thousands of protesters arrested over the past few months, he is accused of inciting violence, disturbing the peace and destroying public property.

“I’m more afraid now,” Mosa’ab says of continuing his work as a photojournalist in Egypt. “I think about it 1,000 times over before I go out to cover something.”

* * *

Abdullah has spent the past four months struggling to endure the monotony of prison life.

“People should appreciate every moment they live in freedom,” he says in an interview from jail. “I never thought I could stay this long here. The worst thing is that every day is like the other. You wake up with nothing to do.” (It is very common with many well-off people outside prison. It is like watching the weather in California: the same news and numbers)

He spends his days reading, writing and speaking to other prisoners. (Great opportunities Not available outside prison)

He shares a cell with 66 other men, in a room approximately forty square meters. There are no beds; prisoners sleep on the floor, with blankets provided by their families.

For the first eight weeks, hardly any water was provided, and prisoners had to structure an equitable sharing system in order to shower. The cell is open for an hour a day, when prisoners can walk around the building but are not allowed outside.

Ever the journalist, Abdullah has spent much of his time in prison interviewing all of his fellow detainees and documenting their cases. He plans to write a book once he is released.

He says those imprisoned with him include Islamists spanning different ideologies (wondering what ideology has to do in religion) as well as street vendors, minors and even one man detained simply for standing near police on the day of the Rabaa raid who says he is staunchly opposed to Morsi, voted for his rival in the presidential election and took part in the anti-Morsi protest on June 30 and the pro-military one on July 26.

Like many other prisoners, the worst abuse Abdullah suffered occurred when he was first detained. Officers arrested him as he was walking out of Rabaa with Gehad past a security checkpoint. They asked for his ID, but all he had was his passport, which was filled with entry stamps from the countries across Africa where he had been deployed for Al Jazeera. “They considered me a spy,” he says. “They thought I was a big catch.”

He was taken to the nearby Cairo stadium, where prisoners were being mistreated and harassed by the police. The next morning he was transferred with several dozen others to a police station, where they were greeted by the notorious “welcome party”—a common practice of forcing incoming detainees to run through a gantlet of waiting soldiers, who beat and whip them with sticks and belts.

Once inside, police stole money, watches and IDs from the prisoners while continuing to beat and humiliate them, Abdullah says.

All of them were eventually transferred to Abu Zaabal, where they have remained ever since, relying on regular supplies of food, water and other essentials from relatives, as is customary in Egypt’s crippled prison system.

“I do have hope,” he says. “But sometimes I feel down because my wife has to endure this in the beginning of our marriage. I am lucky she is a very strong lady and is supporting me when I should be supporting her.”

Abdullah has received scant backing for his plight from other journalists in Egypt outside of his friends.

The Journalists’ Syndicate has not taken up his case, and calls for his release are largely absent in the local press. “Some Egyptian journalists are very happy about it, including people that we know,” says his brother Mosa’ab. “They think he deserves it.”

Abdullah’s network, Al Jazeera, has long been criticized as being heavily biased in favor of the Muslim Brotherhood and the Morsi government’s agenda (Qatar is the main supporter financially of the Muslim Brotherhood and Turkey politically)

After Morsi’s ouster, authorities raided the offices of Al Jazeera’s local affiliate in Egypt and briefly detained its staff. In September, a Cairo court ordered the channel and three other stations to stop broadcasting, saying in its ruling that they “hurt national security.”

Yet the criticism did not just come from the military-backed government. Even Mosa’ab would argue with Abdullah over the channel’s coverage. “I would criticize Al Jazeera and tell him about my reservations and tell him to keep his integrity,” Mosa’ab says. “He always took the criticism well but did what he believed.”

“Every channel is biased or has its agenda, no channel is completely neutral,” Abdullah says.  “I always challenge people to point to something I said on air, and I will face any allegations,” he says. “Our job is to help the weak. But unfortunately, in Egypt most journalists stand with those in power, either Mubarak or the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces or Sisi.”

In the deepening polarization following Morsi’s overthrow, many pundits on private media outlets have voiced complete support for the military, adopting its language of a “war on terror” and vilifying Al Jazeera and demonizing all Islamists as violent extremists unfit for political life.

“The polarization was a big divide that resulted in a lack of empathy and solidarity between journalists,” says Sherif Mansour, the Middle East and North Africa coordinator for the Committee to Protect Journalists.

“This is one of the main reasons we’ve seen these attacks on journalists increase but also go unpunished.” Seven journalists, including Abdullah, are currently imprisoned in Egypt, according to Mansour, while dozens of others have been briefly detained.

Meanwhile, after months of a vicious crackdown targeting the Muslim Brotherhood and Morsi supporters, the Interior Ministry has turned its attention to the activist community that first launched and sustained the revolution.

Prominent figures, like blogger Alaa Abd El Fattah and Ahmed Douma, have been arrested in the middle of the night at their homes and accused of violating a draconian new anti-protest law.

Dozens of non-Islamist protesters—among them some of the country’s most notable female activists—have been detained during peaceful demonstrations and beaten and abused while in police custody. And security forces have tried to quell a growing firestorm of protest and dissent on university campuses with brute force, killing at least one student and arresting scores in mass sweeps.

“I don’t think the people who stood against Morsi wanted this,” Abdullah says. “The way things are going, nothing is going to change in Egypt.”

Read David Mizner on hunger strikes around the world.

Note: Hillary Clinton clearly expressed the US policy: “We wanted the Muslim Brotherhood to come to power. (Not only in Egypt but in Syria and Libya and in any state they are strong). We were taken aback when Sisi succeeded in his coup d’etat. We tried military intervention in Egypt but we backed off when Egypt army, marines and air-force showed their willingness to defend their coup”

 

Female socialist activist is gunned down by police during demonstrations on fourth anniversary of Arab Spring that ousted Hosni Mubarak

So far, 20 Egyptians died in this long day of demonstrations throughout Egypt.

Egyptian Arab Spring is still bringing its toll of brutal military dictatorship.

  • WARNING: GRAPHIC CONTENT 
  • Shaima al-Sabbagh died of birdshot wounds in clashes with police
  • Prime Minister Ibrahim Mahlab vowed to ‘punish’ whoever is responsible 
  • Al-Sabbagh’s death follows that of an 18-year-old protester on Friday 
  • WHAT IS BIRD SHOT AMMUNITION?

A female demonstrator was killed in clashes with Egyptian police during a protest in central Cairo today on the eve of the anniversary of the 2011 uprising against Hosni Mubarak.

A health ministry spokesman said Shaima al-Sabbagh died of birdshot wounds, which fellow protesters said were fired by police to disperse the march.

Al-Sabbagh, who was said to be 34-years-old with a five-year-old son, was shot while she peacefully marched towards the Tahrir Square to lay a commemorative wreath of roses.

Prime Minister Ibrahim Mahlab said al-Sabbagh’s death was being investigated and vowed that ‘whoever committed a mistake will be punished, whoever he may be.’

Socialist Popular Alliance Party activist Shaima al-Sabbagh (middle) was shot and died of birdshot wounds during clashes with Egyptian police during a protest in central Cairo today on the eve of the anniversary of the 2011 uprising against Hosni Mubarak

Al-Sabbagh can be seen, right, hitting the ground as a fellow protester comes to her aide during the clashes

Al-Sabbagh can be seen, right, hitting the ground as a fellow protester comes to her aide during the clashes

Fellow protesters said Al-Sabbagh was shot by police trying to disperse those involved in the protest march

Fellow protesters said Al-Sabbagh was shot by police trying to disperse those involved in the protest march

Al-Sabbagh, a member of the party, was hit in the head with birdshot, and was taken to a hospital where she was declared dead.

The interior ministry said it was investigating the death, and suggested Islamist ‘infiltrators’ were to blame.

The clash took place hours before state television aired a pre-recorded speech by President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi to mark the fourth anniversary of the uprising.

He said: ‘I salute all our martyrs, from the beginning of January 25 (2011) until now.’

The speech appears to have been taped in the presidential palace before Sisi left for Saudi Arabia to offer his condolences over the death of King Abdullah. 

Islamists called for protests tomorrow to revive what they say was the ‘revolution’ that overthrew Mubarak. It also briefly brought to power Islamist president Mohamed Morsi who was toppled by the then army chief Sisi in July 2013.

Prime Minister Ibrahim Mahlab said al-Sabbagh's death was being investigated and vowed that 'whoever committed a mistake will be punished, whoever he may be'

Prime Minister Ibrahim Mahlab said al-Sabbagh’s death was being investigated and vowed that ‘whoever committed a mistake will be punished, whoever he may be’

Morsi’s supporters often hold small rallies that police quickly disperse.

Yesterday an 18-year-old female protester was killed in clashes in the Mediterranean city of Alexandria. Police had warned they would confront protests ‘decisively.’

Authorities have cracked down on the Islamists since the military overthrew Morsi after a year in power, and hundreds have been killed in clashes.

Scores of policemen and soldiers have also been killed in militant attacks.

The crackdown has also extended to leftwing and secular dissidents who initially supported Morsi’s overthrow but have since turned against the new authorities, accusing them of being authoritarian.

Today’s central Cairo protest was organised by the Socialist Popular Alliance party.

Egyptian policemen detain a supporter of the People's Alliance Party during a demonstration in Cairo's Talaat Harb square, near Tahrir square

Egyptian policemen detain a supporter of the People’s Alliance Party during a demonstration in Cairo’s Talaat Harb square, near Tahrir square

Supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood movement leave as security forces arrive to disperse a demonstration on January 24, 2015 in the Cairo district of Heliopolis
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Supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood movement leave as security forces arrive to disperse a demonstration on January 24, 2015 in the Cairo district of Heliopolis

Party member Adel el-Meligy said: ‘The party decided to hold a symbolic protest to commemorate the anniversary of the January 25 revolution.’

WHAT IS BIRD SHOT AMMUNITION

Bird shot is designed to be used in shotgun shells and consist of spheres of metal, or bb’s, that can be packed into a shell and which separate when fired.

It was originally made from lead, but is now made from steel, tungsten and other materials.

The ammunition was designed for shooting birds but it can injure larger animals.

In 2006 American Vice-President Dick Cheney accidentally shot a fellow hunter with it. His victim was not severely injured.

Birdshot is used by law enforcement as a non-lethal alternative to shot gun pellets and is often used in riot and protest situations.

Police also replace the slugs with rubber bullets. (That should be a better idea)

He said police fired tear gas, birdshot and arrested the party’s secretary general and five other young members.

The 18-day anti-Mubarak revolt had been fuelled by police abuses and the corruption of the strongman’s three decade rule, but the police have since regained popularity amid widespread yearning for stability.

Activists, including those who spearheaded the anti-Mubarak revolt, have accused Sisi of reviving aspects of the former autocrat’s rule.

Sisi and his supporters deny such allegations, and point to his widespread popularity and support for a firm hand in dealing with protests, which are seen as damaging to an economic recovery.

The anniversary will be marked just days after a court ordered the release of Mubarak’s two sons, Gamal and Alaa, pending a corruption retrial along with their father.

Another court had dismissed charges against Hosni Mubarak over the deaths of protesters.

Archive footage of anti-Mubarak uprising in Egypt

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2924709/Shocking-moment-female-socialist-activist-gunned-police-demonstrations-4th-anniversary-Arab-Spring-ousted-Hosni-Mubarak.html#ixzz3PowZlldR
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What “Rhinoceros” play of Eugène Ionesco has to do with Egypt?

Are we celebrating the third anniversary of Egypt’s 2011 revolution?

Seems like yesterday: The euphoria never abated, from one uprising to another revolt to a mass revolution to another “popular” military coup…

DELPHINE MINOUI,  Middle East correspondent for the French daily Le Figaro. published this Feb. 19, 2014 in The Opinion Pages of the nyt:

Egypt’s ‘Rhinoceros’ Allegory

CAIRO — I’ve just finished rereading “Rhinoceros,” the 1959 play by Eugène Ionesco.

For someone living in Cairo these days, the parallels between the Roumanian-French playwright’s mid-20th century parable about the rise of fascist and Stalinist conformity in Europe and the growing  mass hysteria surrounding the rise of Field Marshal Abdul-Fattah el-Sisi are striking.

Café windows are covered with posters of the man who overthrew the elected Islamist president, Mohamed Morsi.  El-Sisi  is already seen as the next leader of Egypt, after his government bestowed on him the baton of Field Marshal before he retires in order to run for the presidency.

In central Cairo, you can buy chocolates featuring his picture. All day long, TV channels run excerpts from his speeches mixed in with patriotic hymns. At a recent wedding party at a luxurious hotel facing the Nile, guests started hitting the dance floor as soon as the D.J. played “Teslam al ayadi” (“Bless your hands”), an old nationalist song that many Sisi groupies have turned into an ode to the man, even setting it as the ringtone on their cellphones.

The Egyptian friend who brought me to the party described this Sisi-mania as “a real epidemic,” a virus afflicting even the once-rebellious youth who filled Tahrir Square three years ago.

A few days ago, outside the courthouse where Mr. Morsi is on trial, two girls had proudly strapped military boots to their heads in a gesture of submission to Field Marshal Sisi — like the characters in the Ionesco play who, one by one, grow bumps on their forehead that end up turning into rhinoceros horns.

The first time I read “Rhinoceros,” I was in secondary school in Paris. My teacher told us it described the roots and danger of fascism, and how an ideology combined with a conformist mind-set can reshape people’s minds.

The play, a classic of the “theater of the absurd,” was a vivid allegory of the upsurge in totalitarianism across Europe, and the conformity, fear and collective psychosis that came with it.

Fear is an irrational thing,” says Le Logicien, a character in the play. “It must yield to reason.

In Act 1, the sudden appearance of several rhinoceroses in a small town in France raises more fear and suspicion than fascination.

In Act 2, people start becoming contaminated by the “rhinoceritis” bug. That’s the case of Botard, one of the characters.

After fighting the epidemic, even calling it “monstrous,” he ends up growing a horn himself.

By the end of Act 3, all but one character, Bérenger, have turned into beasts.

Today’s Egyptian liberals and leftists mostly remind me of Botard. After resisting the manipulations of the military for two and a half years, many of them finally succumbed to its will, despite suffering pressure and humiliation.

Like Botard, the Egyptians seem to have lost their sense of resistance.

In parallel with a heavy crackdown on the Muslim Brotherhood and revolutionaries, the cult of Field Marshal Sisi has reached a level of collective madness.

In mid-January, as Egyptians were invited to vote on a new Constitution, polling stations turned into pro-army rallies — with fanfare and candies — while opponents were kept away from the show, hiding in their little corner.

On the TV, newscasters have metamorphosed into agents of the official truth. The army is fighting terrorism. Doubters should watch their backs. Field Marshal Sisi is the man of the hour.

Comforted by the mainstream trend, and giving up on their individual free thoughts, many Egyptians take this narrative for granted.

Dudard, another rhinoceros of the play, summarizes it perfectly: His desire, he explains, is to join the “universal family.”

In some ways, the widespread propaganda resonates as a bad version of absurd theater. Last month, a puppet character featured in a Vodafone commercial was put under investigation after someone accused it of secretly passing on terrorist instructions.

Even my daughter’s well-educated and polyglot pediatrician contracted the virus. To him, the army is doing nothing else than protecting the country from a big “American plot” to weaken the region by destroying the military forces.

Ironically, the newly turned rhinoceroses of Egypt are the same ones who used to accuse the Muslim Brotherhood’s supporters of being nothing more than a bunch of sheep. “You have to go with the flow,” one character in the play explains.

Of course, Egypt has its unique story.

It is a country where people have grown up with real love for the army and a nostalgia for the blustery nationalism of Gamal Abdel Nasser.

But there are definitely patterns inherent to other fascist states: the blind submission to authority, the persecution of those who think differently, and the tendency of unifying around a common enemy, in this case, the Brotherhood.

For many, putting on an awkward rhinoceros horn is more comfortable than risking losing everything in the name of freedom.

On Jan. 25, the anniversary of the revolution, I followed the few hundred ex-revolutionaries who had gathered in front of the Union of Journalists while facing off against tear gas volleys. A few blocks away, tens of thousands of rhinoceroses had charged in the very symbolic Tahrir Square — where activists had confronted President Hosni Mubarak’s forces three years ago — cheering on their new hero, Field Marshal Sisi.

In the middle of the crowd I recognized the journalist and activist Khaled Dawoud. Once an opponent of the Muslim Brotherhood, he is now a hardcore critic of the army. But to many Egyptians, he is an alien. I asked him if he still had hope for his country. “Yes,” he replied with no hesitation. “As long as I see these young people in the streets, the revolution is not over.”

Saved by his love for another character as well as his devout belief in critical thinking, Bérenger, too, manages to resist the stampede.

I am the last man left, and I am staying that way till the end! I am not capitulating!” says Bérenger before the curtain falls.

A version of this op-ed appears in print on February 20, 2014, in The International New York Times.

Funny. Absolute Jordan’s King Finds Fault With the “Other” Arab absolute monarchs

King Abdullah II of Jordan (Not the ailing monarch of Saudi Arabia) leads one of the smallest, poorest and most vulnerable Arab nations.

Such a British-made  “Kingdom”gives this King is a huge catalyst to looking down on many of those absolute monarchs and dictators around him, including the leaders of Egypt, Turkey and Syria, as well as members of his own royal family, his secret police, his traditional tribal political base, his Islamist opponents and even United States diplomats.

For example,

1. President Mohamed Morsi of Egypt has “no depth,” King Abdullah said in an interview with the American journalist Jeffrey Goldberg, to be published this week in The Atlantic magazine.

2. Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey is an authoritarian who views democracy as a “bus ride,” as in, “Once I get to my stop, I am getting off,” the king said.

3. President Bashar al-Assad of Syria is so provincial that at a social dinner he once asked the monarchs of Jordan and Morocco to explain jet lag. “He never heard of jet lag,” King Abdullah said, according to an advance copy of the article.

 published this March 18/2013 in the NYT:

“The King’s conversations with Mr. Goldberg, an influential writer on the Middle East and an acquaintance of more than a decade, offer a rare view of the contradictory mind-set of Washington’s closest ally in the Arab world as he struggles to master the upheaval of the Arab Spring revolts.

Seldom has an Arab autocrat spoken so candidly in public.

Pool photo by Sergei Ilnitsky. King Abdullah II of Jordan during a state visit to Russia in February, when he met with President Vladimir V. Putin.

King Abdullah appears humbled and even fatigued by the many challenges he failed to foresee when he inherited the throne 14 years ago, describing himself before coronation as a “Forrest Gump” in the background of his father’s long reign.

In contrast to his father, King Hussein, King Abdullah promises to move Jordan closer to a British-style constitutional monarchy, and thus to stay ahead of the Arab Spring wave.

But he insists that only he can lead the transition to democracy, in part to ensure that democracy will not deliver power to his Islamist opponents.

The era of Arab monarchies is passing, King Abdullah said. “Where are monarchies in 50 years?” he asked. But even his own family, with 11 siblings and half-siblings, does not yet understand the lessons of the Arab Spring for dynasties like theirs, he said, adding that the public will no longer tolerate egregious displays of excess or corruption.

Photo: ‎الرجااااااااء المشاركة والنشر<br /><br /><br /><br />
خائن ابن خائن عميل لأمريكا واسرائيل<br /><br /><br /><br />
عاهر الأردن بدأ بادخال الاهابيين الى سوريا عبر الحدود وبعد اجتماعه بالصهاينة والعربان قرر فتح الحدود مع سوريا وسيدخل أكثر من 10000 ارهابي الى سوريا في الايام القليلة القادمة من الاردن وهذه معلومات مؤكدة والكل يعرف درعا وكم هي بيئة حاضنة لهؤلاء الارهابيين.</p><br /><br /><br />
<p>رجاء من الجميع نشر هذا البوست على أوسع نطاق ودعمه حتى لا تحذف الصورة....‎

The same absolute dinausor in a non-formal attire

“Members of my family don’t get it,” he said. “Look at some of my brothers. They believe that they’re princes, but my cousins are more princes than my brothers, and their in-laws are like — oh my God!” he continued.

“I’m always having to stop members of my family from putting lights on their guard cars,” he said. “I arrest members of my family and take their cars away from them and cut off their fuel rations and make them stop at traffic lights.”

Even his own sons should be punished if convicted of corruption, he insisted. “Everybody else is expendable in the royal family,” he said. “That is the reality of the Arab Spring that hit me.”

He blamed his own government’s secret police for blocking his efforts at political reform. For example, he charged that the secret police had conspired with conservatives in the political elite to block his attempts to open up more representation in Parliament to Palestinians, who make up more than 50% of Jordan’s population.

“Institutions I had trusted were just not on board,” he said, naming as an example the mukhabarat, or secret police. He said he had not realized at first how deeply “conservative elements” had become “embedded in certain institutions” like the mukhabarat. “Two steps forward, one step back,” he added.

Stopping the Islamists from winning power was now “our major fight” across the region, he said. He repeatedly mocked the Muslim Brotherhood, the pan-Arab Islamist movement behind the largest opposition party in the Jordanian Parliament and Mr. Morsi’s governing party in Egypt, calling it “a Masonic cult” and “wolves in sheep’s clothing.”

And he accused American diplomats of naïveté about their intentions.

The US has been training these people and dispatching them to Syria via Jordan

“When you go to the State Department and talk about this, they’re like, ‘This is just the liberals talking, this is the monarch saying that the Muslim Brotherhood is deep-rooted and sinister,’ ” King Abdullah said.

His job is to dissuade Westerners from the view that “the only way you can have democracy is through the Muslim Brotherhood.

The king was also frankly dismissive of the tribal leaders from the East Bank of the Jordan River who have traditionally formed his family’s base of support. “The old dinosaurs,” he called a group of East Bank tribal leaders, including a former prime minister, before a meeting with them in the town of Karak. “It’s all about, ‘I’ll vote for this guy because I am in his tribe,’ ” the king said of their political program.

Alarmed at the violence in neighboring Syria, King Abdullah said he had offered asylum and protection to the family of President Assad. “They said, ‘Thank you very much, but why don’t you worry about your country more than you worry about us?’ ”

“The monarchy is going to change,” the king vowed. His son will preside over “a Western-style democracy with a constitutional monarchy,” the king said, and not “the position of Bashar today.”

Apparently, this king has not ready fora  constitutional monarchy as long as he is alive.

Sweet talk: Constantly shifting the blame on the others and on the institutions that he leads…

The political leaders in Jordan have been urging King Abdullah to return all the properties that himself and his extended family have confiscated for no compensation, and stop the lavish life-style of the monarch that this poor country cannot afford…

A version of this article appeared in print on March 19, 2013, on page A8 of the New York edition with the headline: Jordan’s King Finds Fault With Everyone Concerned.

Did Egypt’s President Mohamed Morsi really win election? What Robert Fisk says…

Robert Fisk  published in The Independent daily on July 1 (with slight editing and rearrangement):

Rumors in Tahrir Square claim that the majority of 50.7 % of Egyptian voters cast their ballot for Ahmed Shafiq, (Mubarak’s former Prime Minister) in last month’s elections and that only 49.3 % voted for Mohamed Morsi of the Muslim Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice party. Why Morsi was inducted President? Apparently, the military were so fearful of the hundreds of thousands of Brotherhood supporters who would gather in Tahrir Square that they decided to hand out the victory to Morsi, after ten days of waiting for the results to be officially announced.

It is rumored from well-connected insiders that Mohamad el Baradei, Nobel prize-winner and former nuclear “watchdog”, was behind the secret meeting of Morsi with four leading members of the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (Scaf) in Egypt, four days before the election results were proclaimed and that Morsi agreed to accept his presidency before the constitutional court rather than the newly dissolved parliament – which is exactly what he did on Saturday.

(It is very doubtful that Baradei had the necessary weight to influence anyone in Egypt if it were not the US behind the planning and “facilitation”)

Morsi says there will be another election in a year’s time, although I have my doubts.

Behind this piece of fox-gossip is a further piece of information – shattering if true – that the Egyptian army’s intelligence service is outraged by the behaviour of some members of the Scaf (in particular, the four who supposedly met Morsi) and wants a mini-revolution to get rid of officers whom it believes to be corrupt.

These young soldiers call themselves the New Liberal Officers – a different version of the Free Officers Movement which overthrew the corrupt King Farouk way back in 1952.

Many of the present young intelligence officers were very sympathetic to the Egyptian revolution last year – and several of them were shot dead by government snipers long after Mubarak’s departure during a Tahrir Square demonstration. These young officers admire the current head of military intelligence, soon to retire and to be replaced, so it is said, by another respected military officer with the unfortunate name of Ahmed Mosad.

I have to say that all Cairo is abuzz with “the deal”, and almost every newspaper has a version of how Morsi got to be President – though I must also add that none have gone as far as the fox (Baradei). He says, for example, that the military intelligence services – like some of the Scaf officers – want a thorough clean out of generals who control a third of the Egyptian economy in lucrative scams that include shopping malls, banks and vast amounts of property.

Where does Morsi stand in relation to this? Even the fox doesn’t know.

Nor is there any plausible explanation as to why Shafiq set off to the United Arab Emirates the day after the election results were announced, reportedly to perform the “umra” pilgrimage in Saudi Arabia. There is much talk of a court case against Shafiq going back to Mubarak’s era.

Baradei is expected to be appointed Prime Minister and would help Morsi keep the streets calm and allow Egypt to come up with an economic plan to persuade the International Monetary Fund to loan the country the money it needs to survive.

There is also talk of great tensions between the military intelligence and the staff of the interior ministry, some of whom are fearful that another mini-revolution will have them in court for committing crimes against Egyptian civilians during the anti-Mubarak revolution.

There are persistent rumours that the plain-clothes “baltagi” thugs who were used to beat protesters last year were employed to prevent Christians voting in some Egyptian villages.

Interestingly, when the ghost of late “Sultan Faruq” ran through election irregularities before announcing the presidential winner eight days ago, he said he didn’t know who prevented the village voters getting to the polling station.

All of which is quite a story. Not the kind that can be confirmed – but Egypt is not a country which lends itself to hard facts when the Egyptian press (a mercifully wonderful institution after the dog-day years of Mubarak’s newspapers) makes so much up.

But one fact cannot be denied. When he wanted to show that he was a revolutionary animal, the fox held out his back paw. And there was a very severe year-old bullet wound in it.

Note 1: Today, July 9, Morsi re-instituted the People’s Parliament that the military had deccreed unconstitutional on Juin 15, before the election of the Presidency, through Egypt High Constitution Court .

Note 2: According to Egypt current Constitution, The President has absolute monarch powers, and the level of this power has not yet been reformed or revised officially. The Moslem Brotherhood are faking that the president elect Morse has to navigate within reduced powers, just in case they fail to enact the necessary reforms that the revolution hoped for…That the military is also able to currently share in the power is a good signal that reforming the power of the President is necessary for a healthy and equitable democratic system that can be sustained without falling back into dictatorial tendencies…

 Agnostic bisexual vegetarian targeted as VP to Egypt president? From the Egyptian news sources Al Koushary Today

This is one kind of humor that Egyptians are found of.

Makarona wrote on June 27, 2012:

“Newly elected Egypt President Mohamed Morsi (Moslem Brotherhood) picks agnostic bisexual vegetarian as Vice President.

In an attempt to appease Egyptian liberals, concerned about an Islamist takeover, President-elect Mohamed Morsi has chosen an agnostic bisexual vegetarian for the vice-presidency. The as yet unnamed individual may be the only openly agnostic bisexual vegetarian in Egypt.

According to a Muslim Brotherhood (MB) spokesman, it was extremely difficult finding an Egyptian that fit the specifications, but the MB was able to track one down just before the departure of Zamalek – an affluent island in central Cairo which mysteriously travelled up the Nile and into the Mediterranean Sea before docking off the southern coast of Italy, immediately after Morsi was announced president. (The MB wants desperately to retain the rich class in Egypt)

The hunt for an agnostic bisexual vegetarian was due to a report by MB psychologists who, after years of analyzing the “liberal mindset”, characterized it as “religiously uncertain, and therefore prone to a confused sexual orientation, while also being overly concerned with animal welfare.”

As such, the need for an agnostic bisexual vegetarian was obvious.

The 43 year-old VP, who allegedly only subsides on a diet of vodka and celery, is a part-time interior decorator and part-time socialist who also has his own jewelry line.

The MB has noted that the agnostic bisexual vegetarian potential VP is politically savvy, donating profits from his jewelry sales to help “provide poor African kids with sunscreen.” He is also credited with organizing the campaign to save the monkey at Cairo White.

The VP, who now resides at Tamarai nightclub, after the departure of his home in Zamalek, is reportedly proud to represent the Egyptian liberal community, which is known to fervently support democracy, so long as wealthy women can continue to wear hot shorts in El Gouna and select private compounds in the North Coast.

President Morsi’s choice of VP is the strongest indicator yet that the MB is ultimately unconcerned about what people believe in or how they use their genitals, at least so long as the organization is allowed to enforce its neo-liberal economic program, which is designed to make the rich richer, and the bearded rich even richer.


adonis49

adonis49

adonis49

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