- Egypt’s Shura Council green-lights the president’s emergency measures.
- Egypt’s National Salvation Front rejects dialogue with President Morsi.
- Protesters commemorate ‘Friday of rage’
- Morsi starts dialogue with political groups despite NSF boycott.
- Suez Canal residents defy President Morsi’s curfew.
- Shura-bound protesters torch police vehicles during clashes in downtown Cairo.
- Thousands join anti-Morsi protest in Alexandria.
- 27 in Cairo’s Garden City arrested for rioting.
- Chief of Egypt’s army warns of ‘collapse’ as chaos mounts.
- Nour party demands national salvation government
- Katatni submits initiative to amend parliamentary election law
- Presidency unveils plan for constitutional modifications
- Drop in Egypt’s gas supplies renews concern in Jordan.
- Cairo court affirms death of 7 Copts over anti-Islam film.
- Stocks drop amid turmoil and political standoff.
- Morsi reconsiders state of emergency declaration.
- Jihad and Jama’a al-Islamiya: Black bloc must die.
- FreedomHouse: Morsi acting as ‘party leader’
- Under attack, Cairo hotel sends Twitter SOS.
- In Germany, Morsi insists that much-criticized comments toward Jews were taken out of context.
- Egypt’s liberals and hardline Islamists engage in rare talks, increasing pressure on the president regarding crisis.
- Four arrested on suspicion of Black Bloc membership
- Fitch downgrades Egypt sovereign rating.
- Egypt suspends all train services in south due to protest
- Radical Egyptian cleric Wagdy Ghoneim urges Morsi to kill ‘thugs.’
- Leading Egyptian scholar gathers rivals, urges dialogue.
- FJP will cooperate with all for security and stability.
- 150 Nour party members resigned Thursday during protest over meeting with opposition’s salvation front.
- Authorities held member of Black bloc over Israeli sabotage plan.
- John Kerry: US aid to Egypt must continue despite unrest.
- HRW: Crisis highlights urgent need for reform.
- Morsi cuts short his visit to Germany due to violence.
- Suez Canal to raise fees in May.
- Protesters attack presidential palace.
- One dead, dozens hurt as police clash with protestors
- Police drag protester and strip him naked
- One of largest cargo ships in world is sinking in Suez Canal.
- Opposition activist who disappeared four days ago found critically injured.
- Clashes enter fifth day in Kafr el-Sheik, 25 injured.
- Health Ministry: One dead, 91 injured during Friday’s clashes.
- Protesters stone prime minister’s motorcade.
- Prime Minister asserts that chaos threatens economy.
- Ex-Interior Minister, Adly sentenced to three years in forced labor case.
- Danish ship rescued in the Suez Canal.
- Abdel Moneim Said named as new chairman of Al-Masry Al-Youm newspaper.
A Few Thoughts:
One of the most amusing slogans that were circulated by the Muslim Brotherhood’s supporters is “state prestige.” The defiance against the emergency law in the canal region and the battle scenes in front of the presidential palace are indications that, currently, Egypt is neither a functional state nor has any prestige. This tired statement is as empty as the minds of those who repeat it day and night, and it has failed drastically to stop the spiral of violence.
Less than 24 hours after millions watched central security officers beating and dragging him naked in the anti-Morsi protest, victim Hamada Saber, in police custody without lawyers, told prosecutors on Saturday that protesters, not security forces, initiated the assault against him.
I listened to Hamada’s testimony closely; his interview in the police hospital sound bizarre, illogical, and reminiscent of similar interviews conducted in the past in many authoritarian Arab states: “The protesters fired a bullet at me and robbed me. When I saw the CSF soldiers coming at the crowd, I was scared and I ran. The soldiers chased after me, yelling that they wanted to help me. When I fell, they caught me and said, ‘You gave us a hard time, man.’” In another twist, his daughter claimed that both her father and mother were threatened by the police.
On her Twitter account, Journalist Bel Trew wrote, “No way that man was not beaten and dragged. I saw it.” She also wrote on her FB page, “During the last week in Egypt, I’ve personally witnessed a girl violently mobbed, stripped and sexual assaulted, a bystander gunned down close range by police with birdshot, a prisoner stripped, dragged and brutally beaten and 1000s badly tear-gassed.”
Hamada’s case is another ugly reminder that no one has changed; the police haven’t changed, the leadership hasn’t changed, and many ordinary Egyptians haven’t changed. We will never know what really happened to Hamada, even if he later appeared on TV to tell a different story. Egypt is now a country in which truth is as elusive as its newly born democracy. Hamada is a symbol of what went wrong; in other words, we as a society haven’t changed. I don’t blame him as some do − he is not a celebrity that citizens and foreign embassies will rush to save. He is just a human being who thinks humiliation is his only method of survival.
On his Twitter account, Marc Lynch commented on the appointment of Abdel Moneim Said as the new chairman of Al-Masry Al-Youm. “What a statement on evolution.” He is right; we are not evolving. We run through one cycle and intentionally − or un-intentionally − refuse to break it and progress in a linear pass. I respect Said, but Egypt needs an independent news outlet that is non-partisan and not dedicated to be for or against the ruling party, an essential step to regain balance in a society that is dangerously close to the edge.
Many have rightly pointed out that, in my last two pieces, I did not offer solutions to the current crisis. They are right; I did not, mainly because I doubt that solutions are what Egypt needs. Egypt must first change its attitudes of vengeance, anger, paranoia, denial before any solutions can take hold. Case in point: The way that the Ahly fans celebrated the Port Said case verdict indicates, in my opinion, a lust for vengeance rather than justice. It seems to me that they wanted to see death in response to death, regardless of whether the 21 defendants are the true culprits or not. Frankly, I think tricky court cases and political tension are an explosive mix. The country can live with one, but not both.
Egypt needs to break free from its current endless cycle of bickering to reach a more linear progression toward true democracy. Our old attitudes will not change unless our leaders adopt it first. The meeting between head of the Nour party and opposition was a step in the right direction. If the left and right can find common ground, it can pave the way toward breaking the dead lock. Sadly, many did not appreciate this gesture, which indicates shortsightedness, in my opinion.
- Tahrir squandered. The Economist
- Wanting Egypt to fail. Steven Cook
- The failure of Egyptian politics. Khaled Elgindy
- Think Again: The Muslim Brotherhood. Eric Trager
- A series on NPR about the ultraconservative Salafis in Egypt. Leila Fadel
- Egypt’s instability casts doubt on the ambitions of the Islamists. Michael Young.
Finally, here is Jayson Casper’s prayers for Egypt