Egypt

 

Egypt’s Christians in the cross-hairs

December 2016 – The bombing of St Peter’s Church in Cairo exposes the growing vulnerability of Egypt’s Christian minority and the increasing mainstreaming of extremist Islamist discourse.

Sisi’s fridge and Egypt’s frosty economy

November 2016 – A gaffe by Egypt’s president about his refrigerator reveals just how much Egyptians have cooled towards Sisi and his chilling economics.

Gamal Mubarak’s get-rich-quick scheme

November 2016 – How can you make a return that is 12,000 times greater than the initial “investment” in under a decade? Ask Gamal Mubarak.

The folly of the Arab world’s nuclear energy dream

June 2016 – Investing in nuclear energy makes no economic, geostrategic or environmental sense in the Arab world. Renewables will provide the only sunny future.

Egypt’s economic paradox: Income equality v wealth inequality

June 2016 – Despite having one of the world’s highest levels of income equality, Egypt’s wealth gap is growing to become one of the widest. What is behind this paradox?

Egypt’s pharaoh illusion

June 2016 – The idea that Egyptians are docile sheeple who need a pharaoh to shepherd them is a myth that dates back to the not-so-ancient times of the Nasser era.

Giulio Regeni is the tip of Egypt’s police brutality iceberg

May 2016 – Many Egyptians find the allegation that the Italian student was killed by Egypt’s notorious security apparatus chillingly plausible. Italy must shed its former enthusiasm for the Sisi regime.

Egypt’s dollar woes

April 2016 – Hopes are that devaluation will resolve Egypt’s dollar crisis, but the situation could spin out of control without a global currency for international trade.

One man’s terrorist is another woman’s lover

March 2016 – The surreal “lovejacking” of an EgyptAir flight adds a new dimension to the western image of the Arab man: the hopeless romantic and dedicated lover.

Make diplomacy, not war

March 2016 – The world is paying the price for Boutros Boutros-Ghali’s foiled attempts to reform the United Nations into an effective force to resolve conflicts.

Podcast: Egypt’s cartoon villains and heroes

February 2016 – The battle between Egyptian revolutionary and counterrevolutionary forces is being played out in caricature.

The Mubarak enigma

February 2016 – The removal of Hosni Mubarak was likely the proudest moment in Egypt’s recent history, yet, five years on, some Egyptians miss the deposed dictator.

Egypt’s other Tahrirs

February 2016 – Tahrir may have been pacified for now, but the revolution is still playing out in Egypt’s economic and social squares.

Sexual harassment, Islam and the politicisation of women’s bodies

January 2016 – Sexual harassment in Cologne and elsewhere is not about Islam. It is about the patriarchy and the politicisation of women’s bodies.

Egypt’s other Great Pyramid

January 2016 – The Mogamma, that high temple of Egyptian bureaucracy, will be shut down. Welcome as it is, this will not solve the underlying problem of “el-routine”.

Egypt’s borderline paranoia

November 2015 – My interrogation at the Egyptian border about my journalism and opinions is not about state security, but the insecurity of a paranoid state.

The West’s hidden tribalism

September 2015 – Tribalism and sectarianism afflicts Western societies too. So why is that they seem to be tearing the Middle East apart?

A utopian refuge for refugees?

September 2015 – Can an Egyptian billionaires vision of turning a Mediterranean island into a just republic for refugees help solve the refugee crisis?

Sisi’s Suez moment

August 2015 – Suez Canal II is not about economics. It is a symbol of how President Sisi is supposedly navigating Egypt through narrow straits towards modernity.

عن تجربة اليونان المؤلمة ودروسها لمصر

يوليو 2015 – يوجد الكثير من الدروس المستفادة لمصر من أزمة اليونان الحادة

Omar Sharif: Actor without borders

July 2015 – The late Omar Sharif was living, breathing, walking proof that there is nothing inherently irreconcilable between the Middle East and the West.

One year on: Gazans feel the pain of being abandoned by Egypt

July 2015 – Although the Israeli siege of Gaza hurts more materially, the Egyptian blockade is more painful emotionally. It is also counterproductive.

Egyptian Jews and love triangles

July 2015 – Despite outlandish conspiracy theories, a Ramadan TV drama about Egypt’s lost Jewish community is not a missive to Israel but an ode to pluralism.

A Riche chapter of Egyptian history

June 2015 – For a century, Café Riche was a microcosm of Cairo’s bewildering contradictions, and a “refuge from the pain of loneliness”  for intellectuals.

The death of sanity in Egypt

May 2015 – The sentencing to death of former president Mohamed Morsi is the latest chapter in Egypt’s comedy of terrors that could push the country over the edge

The tip of Egypt’s snobbery iceberg

May 2015 – The replacement of one snobbish justice minister in Egypt with another who believes judges are lords and masters shows how deep elitism runs.

Enslaved by history

May 2015 – Failing to acknowledge the legacy of slavery on all our modern societies makes the present an unnecessary slave to history.

Dispelling the curse of the Nile

April 2015 – Conflict between Nile basin countries has been averted. But unless effective action is taken, a water war remains a distinct future possibility.

The self-fulfilling prophesy of the Sunni v Shia myth

March 2015 – Like in Syria and Iraq, the conflict in Yemen is not sectarian. But political profiteers and jihadists  are turning it into a self-fulfilling prophesy.

Egypt’s other revolution

January 2015 – Revolutionary disappointment in Egypt has concealed the ongoing social revolution whose shifting sands are likely to result in a political earthquake.

Freedom of repression in Egypt

Januay 2015 – The Republic of Tahrir revolutionaries dreamt of an Egypt of freedom, but the only thing that seems free these days is the value of human dignity.

Egypt’s centuries-old leadership vacuum

December 2014 – Decades of authoritarianism and centuries of non-indigenous rule have led to a shortage of effective native leaders in Egypt, derailing the revolution.

Sexual harassment and the medina

November 2014 – In Egypt, sexual harassment is a largely urban phenomenon fuelled by a sense of male powerlessness, insecurity and unrealistic gender ideals.

Save the Nile Delta, President al-Sisi

September 2014 – Egypt would be much better off saving the sinking ship of the Nile Delta instead of building a white elephant Suez Canal II.

Israel and Egypt’s insane alliance against Gaza

August 2014 – Despite Egypt’s mediating role, it is no impartial broker on Gaza. It shares Israel’s view that Hamas can be crushed and suffocated into submission.

Egypt’s accidental democracy?

June 2014 – Bad as things are now, Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi, despite his dictatorial tendencies, may unwittingly preside over Egypt’s transition to democracy.

لماذا لا يدان الفساد في مصر؟

يونيو 2014 – قصص من أروقة العدالة المصرية تشرح لنا كيف يمنح القانون المصري الحصانة للفاسدين.

Egypt’s next president is a… Jew?!

May 2014 – What do conspiracy theories that the mother of Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi is a Jew say about the Muslim Brotherhood sympathisers propagating them?

مواجهة الفساد والعدالة الانتقالية

ابريل 2014 – يجب تطوير تصور العدالة الاانتقالية ليشمل الجرائم الاقتصادية لان فساد نظام مبارك لا ينفصل عن ممارسات أخرى كانتهاكات حقوق الإنسان وتزوير إرادة الناخبين.

Gaza’s forsaken and forgotten people

April 2014 – Gaza’s humanitarian disaster and the rising tensions there are forgotten by the world. Principle and pragmatism demand an end to the blockade.

The Arab world’s rebels without a god

March 2014 – In Egypt and other Arab countries, the atheism taboo has been broken. Atheists are rebelling against the status quo and demanding to be seen and heard.

The antidote to Egypt’s sexual harassment epidemic

March 2014 – The cure for Egypt’s sexual harassment crisis is to liberate society from outdated and toxic gender ideals and to rethink notions of “honour”.

Sexual harassment: Undressing naked prejudice

March 2014 – To those who believe the way a woman dresses invites harassment, hear this: she is not to blame – her harassers are.

Gunship diplomacy, rockets and Gaza’s forgotten tragedy

March 2014 – The other tragedies make it is easy to forget Gaza. But with a humanitarian crisis and rising tensions, it’s time to end the Israeli-Egyptian blockade.

Sun, sand and tax “holidays”

March 2014 – In just a single decade, Egypt has lost more than $20 billion in trade mispricing alone, not to mention other forms of tax evasion.

Egypt’s return of the “noble” outlaws

February 2014 – Three years after a revolution against Mubarak-era cronyism, fugitive tycoons are scrambling to buy back their freedom… at knock-down prices.

The square root of the Egyptian revolution

January 2014 – The Egyptian revolution is fatally wounded but it is far too soon to sound the death knells. The dreams it unleashed are impossiblee to contain.

Can Egypt start a new chapter of Middle Eastern history?

January 2014 – The new constitution says Egypt is a “gift” that will “write a new history for humanity”. Should neighbours welcome or fear greater Egyptian influence?

My enemy’s friend is… my ally

January 2014 – In Egypt, both the military and the Muslim Brotherhood accuse each other of being American stooges while discreetly courting Washington.

Is atheism Egypt’s fastest-growing ‘religion’?

October 2013 – Despite the risks, more and more atheists are coming out of the closet in Egypt, emboldened by the revolution’s ethos of freedom and dignity.

إعترافات ملحد مصري

اكتوبر 2013 – رغم عدم الإعتراف بهم، الملحدين ايضاً اولاد بلد ويجب على الدولة والمجتمع ان يعطوهم حقوقهم

Egypt’s revolution in the breaking

October 2013 – Although Egypt has been eclipsed on the Western media radar, it remains caught in a deadly bind between popular jingoism and religious demagoguery.

The Arab-Israeli war of narratives

October 2013 – On the 40th anniversary of the 1973 war, Egyptians and Israelis still cannot agree on the conflict’s name, date or outcome.

Remembering the real Raba’a

September 2013 – Competing myths have emerged around the Raba’a protest camp. But it was neither a terrorist den nor a gathering of freedom and democracy lovers.

Egypt’s underground sisterhood

September 2013 – Egyptian women are under attack from a failing patriarchy. But what is overlooked is that they are fighting back through grassroots emancipation.

Egypt’s rebels who lost their cause

September 2013 – Can the political alliance between Tamarod and the Egyptian military last, especially as the movement turns on the army’s benefactor, Washington?

Egypt’s popular peace front

August 2013 – With the prospect of reconciliation a long way off and to prevent civil war, Egyptians need to form a united front against  all political violence.

Confessions of an Egyptian infidel

August 2013 – Though never officially recognised, atheists and agnostics have always been part of Egypt. Society now needs to grant us our right not to believe.

Egypt’s false state of security

August 2013 – Handing Egypt’s security services a licence to repress the Muslim Brotherhood will return us to the police state the revolution worked to overthrow.

Egypt and the West: the liberal-Islamist paradox

August 2013 – Why do some Western liberals committed to democracy, gender equality and minority support a president and movement that respects none of these?

Egyptian rebels with a cause… and effect

August 2013 – The dedication and success of the Tamarod rebellion against President Morsi is awe-inspiring, but the movement’s current trust in the army is worrying.

Democracy is (still) the solution

August 2013 – In Egypt, neither Islamism nor jingoism is the solution. We need is a visionary founding document, and the stillborn 1954 constitution fits the bill.

Egypt explained… in five YouTube videos

July 2013 – A child’s vision of freedom, infamous last words, street democracy, loving men in uniform, and men in hijabs. Seeing Egypt through Egyptian eyes.

Religious freedom from birth

July 2013 – Unlike eye colour and skin tone, religion is not hereditary. This reality must be reflected in Egyptian identity documents and personal status laws.

Egypt’s clash of freedoms

July 2013 – Events in Egypt are not just a conflict between Islamists, secularists and the military. It is a fundamental clash over conflicting ideas of “freedom”.

‘If we go away… but if you stay’ – a duet by the Egyptian army and people

July 2013 – In a classic political duet, General Sisi sings ‘If we go away’, while the Egyptian people respond with ‘If you stay’.

Nawal El Saadawi: “I am against stability. We need revolution.”

July 2013 – Renowned author and feminist Nawal El Saadawi believes that her fellow Egyptians “must pay the price for freedom”.

A manifesto for Egypt’s future

July 2013 – As Egypt risks another disastrous transition, it is time to create a unique model for Egyptian democracy. No president, no parties, direct democracy.

Egypt’s coup de quoi!?

July 2013 – The millions on the streets, not dressed in khaki, democratically ejected Mohamed Morsi. Now it’s time to remove the military from Egypt’s politics.

The Middle East’s sinking leadership

June 2013 – From Egypt to Turkey, Middle Eastern uprisings have not only been leaderless but have even been a rebellion against the idea of leadership itself.

فى الفلك: حوار ثوري مع جاليليو الصغير

 يونيو 2013 – تعالى أسألك سؤال مجننى، يا جاليليو. أزاى القانون يمنع الناخب اللى عليه أحكام أنه يمارس حقه ويدى المرشح اللى أدين فى قضايا أغتيال أوأرهاب الحق أنه يترشح

Hitler: Arab hero or villain

May 2013 – A shop called Hitler in Egypt raises some uncomfortable questions about Arab perceptions of the Nazi dictator.

Intimate strangers in a splintering world

April 2013 – Multiculturalism is enriching and as easy as child’s play. But as the winds of intolerance blow harder, it may become a liability for my son and his generation.

De paradox van de Egyptische revolutie

April 2013 – De Egyptische revolutie was een geval van collectieve en spontane genialiteit. Maar dit succes in het verkopen van de opstand kwam op een prijs.

The reel story of Egyptian Jews

March 2013 – In telling the story of Egypt’s vanished Jewish community,  a new documentary sheds light on a forgotten chapter of history.

كيف يمكن لنجاح  الثورة المصرية أن يُفشِلها؟

مارس ٢٠١٣ – استطاعت الثورة المصرية من خلال قوة الصورة إلغاء الصور النمطية التي كانت قد ترسخت في الأذهان وتكونت عنا، و لكن هناك ثمن لا بد أن يدفع في المقابل

Tahrir Square: For the sake of the forsaken

February 2013 – For ordinary Egyptians, Tahrir is now a terrifying black hole, but for its marginalised occupiers, it is a liberator from political and social tyranny.

Reading between the lines of the Middle Eastern media

February 2013- Despite its bottom ranking in the Press Freedom Index, the Middle Eastern media is freer than it appears at first sight.

The naked truth about Egypt’s body politic

January 2013 – One young woman’s daring nude protests are unlikely to emancipate Egyptian women, but will they actually hurt the cause of freedom and equality?

Egypt’s rebels without a pause

December 2012 – The failure of Egypt’s new leaders to address the needs and aspirations of young people means the revolution will not stop until there is real change.

News of revolution (part III): Televising the life and death of an Egyptian president

November 2012 – Anwar Sadat was the first Egyptian leader to exploit television’s propaganda power – and even his assassination was unwittingly televised.

Disempowering Egyptian citizens

October 2012 – Despite its democratic aspirations, Egypt’s draft constitution excludes millions of Egyptians from enjoying full citizenship.

News of revolution (part II): Voice of the Arabs or Nasserist mouthpiece?

October 2012 – The Voice of the Arabs steered Egypt from isolationism and towards a pan-Arabist vision in which Nasser was the anointed leader of the Arab world.

News of revolution (part I): How the nascent print media gave birth to Egyptian nationalism

September 2012 – The spread of print media in the 19th century played a profound role in shaping modern Egyptian nationalism and its quest for full independence.

Minority voices in Upper Egypt

September 2012 – A publisher in Luxor who happens to be Christian shows how Egypt’s majority and minorities, despite growing tension, share similar dreams and fears.

The Mubarak regime’s legalised robbery

September 2012 – Since the ‘Mubarak mafia’ were not outlaws but were the law, proving that Egypt’s lost billions were ill-gotten is an elusively difficult challenge.

Egypt’s needs are human, social and educational, not religious, says Islamist MP

August 2012 – Member of Parliament for Luxor AbdulMawgoud Dardery believes religion is a “personal issue”, and government’s job is to focus on collective challenges.

Egypt without the hype… and away from Cairo

August 2012 – Contrary to the distorted and Cairo-centric media view of Egypt, Egyptians have an extraordinary breadth of views about  revolutionising their country.

نصف يوم مع “آخِر” يهودي عربي

اغسطس 2012 – يعتقد ساسون سومخ، الشاعر والكاتب وصديق الأديب المصري الراحل نجيب محفوظ، ان الأدب  يتسامى على السياسة

Half a day with the ‘last Arab Jew’

August 2012 – Sasson Somekh, critic and friend of the late Egyptian Nobel laureate Naguib Mahfouz, believes literature transcends politics and can bridge cultures.

Israel and Egypt’s other revolution

July 2012 – The creation of Israel sparked a revolution in Egypt, and Nasser, the legendary champion of the Arab cause, once sought peace with the Jewish state.

Behind the ‘Zion Curtain’

July 2012 – Living behind the ‘Zion Curtain’ reveals how alike Israelis and Palestinians are and how ordinary people must build common ground on this shared land.

The liberation of exile

July 2012 – My father’s secret police file reveals that my newly wed parents were right to flee Egypt. But I’m grateful for the liberation of “exile”.

Policing the beard

July 2012 – In Egypt, beards have gone from indicating piety to symbolising political affiliation. Police neutrality requires officers to remove their facial hair.

Egypt’s Mursi and the risk of friendly fire

July 2012 – By courting his rivals, Egyptian President Mohamed Mursi could turn former allies into foes and bring to the fore the divisions among Islamists.

The paradox of military-backed civilian rule

June 2012 – Supporting a military dictatorship to impose secular ideals is paradoxical and will only perpetuate and entrench the presence of the deep state.

Egypt: from revolution to evolution

June 2012 – Egypt’s next president likely to be against the revolution, so revolutionaries must forge a viable opposition and push for social and economic change.

Egyptian presidential election: Anti-revolution v counterrevolution

June 2012 – Should Egyptians side with the anti-revolutionary military old guard or the counterrevolutionary Islamist vanguard when choosing their next president?

Revolution: the ‘third way’ in Egypt

June 2012 – With little representation in official politics, Egypt’s revolutionary forces must continue to create a political third way on the streets.

Egyptian presidential election: A young revolutionary’s voting dilemma

May 2012 – Should a young revolutionary seize his last chance to vote for a president or is the true struggle for radical change in Egypt on the streets?

From the Chronikles: My plan for a democratic Egypt

May 2012 – With the right president, Egypt could rid itself of nepotism and inequality to become a prosperous and egalitarian society.

Egyptian presidential election: Who should the revolution vote for?

May 2012 – Egyptian revolutionaries dream of electing a president who emerged from Tahrir square, but should they vote for pragmatism or principle?

Confessions of a would-be Egyptian revolutionary

April 2012 – Returning to Egypt for the first time since the revolution, an expat desktop rebel discovers the inspirational, the troubling and the simply bizarre.

Egypt’s Nubians: damned by the dam

April 2012 – Half a century after the inundation, Nubians may finally gain recognition and redress for the loss of their homeland.

Egypt needs fundamental, not fundamentalist rights

April 2012 – Egypt’s new constitution should focus on democracy, equality and human rights, not religious identity or military budgets.

The Arab media paradox

February 2012 – Despite the general Arab decline in the press freedom rankings, the region’s media have, in many ways, actually become freer.

Detained Egyptian musician vows: “I will not be silenced” about police brutality

February 2012 – Mohammed Jamal, the lead singer of the popular Egyptian indie band Salalem, tells The Chronikler his story about a night of hell in police custody.

Egyptian football violence: Between hooliganism and state thuggery

February 2012 – The deadly battle of Port Said may be another attempt to make a return to a police state the most attractive option for Egypt.

Egyptian revolution: the first year in review

January 2012 – To mark the first anniversary of the Egyptian revolution, a number of writers and activists to assess the first 12 months and look to the future.

Defining Egyptian democracy: “Not like America and not like Iran”

December 2011 – Provincial Egyptians believe that moderate Islamists can construct an Egyptian model of democracy that respects their traditions and identity.

Secular Egypt: dream or delusion?

December 2011 – Is Egypt on the road to theocracy or will it manage to build a secular, pluralist democracy?

Egypt’s general discontent

November 2011 – As millions of Egyptians cast their first democratic vote in decades, recent upheavals confirm that Egypt’s military is the biggest threat to freedom.

Egypt’s middle-class cyberheroes

November 2011 – Social networking and blogging voices the dreams and aspirations of the young and middle-class in Egypt, leaving other groups as marginalised as ever.

Egypt: a country raped by its guardians

November 2011 – Dear generals, you are like a therapist abusing rape victims, so don’t be surprised when Egyptians revolt against your cruelty.

The sacred right to ‘insult’

October 2011 – Jailing Egyptians for insulting religion and the military goes against the revolution’s spirit, and violates people’s secular and sacred rights.

Opposing the Egyptian opposition

October 2011 – The ornamental ‘official opposition’ in Egypt is as dangerous as the authoritarian regime itself.

The danger of an elected dictatorship in Egypt

September 2011 – The army is giving Egyptians a stark choice: choose freedom and endure anarchy, or choose stability and put up with us.

Lessons in revolt

September 2011 – Although designed to instil loyalty to the regime, Egyptian schools have been breeding grounds for rebellion and revolt.

Egypt and Israel: cold peace or cold war?

September 2011 – Relations between Israel and post-revolution Egypt are proving tetchy – but ordinary people hold the keys to peace.

Love thy neighbouring enemy

September 2011 – Recognising the good qualities of the other side can be a first step to healing Arab-Israeli wounds.

Confessions of a ‘self-hating Arab’

August 2011 – Only self-hating Arabs and Jews can save the Middle East from itself.

A tale of two media

August 2011 – Egypt’s independent media have earned their revolutionary stripes, while the state’s mouthpieces have simply switched allegiance to the ‘new emperor’. But which model will endure?

The Arab Spring’s bottom line

August 2011 – The Arab uprisings are not just about democracy and dignity. But with domestic and global economic crises, how likely are they to deliver on bread and butter issues?

Egypt, Israel and Palestine: towards the promised land of peace?

August 2011 – It is high time for Israelis and Palestinians – with grassroots support from Egyptians – to unlock their latent people’s power and forge a popular peace.

Indiana Hawass and the pharaoh’s curse

August 2011 – Zahi Hawass may liken himself to Indiana Jones, but the minister of antiquities is one artifact of the old regime Egyptians want to live without.

 

From Arab spring to summer of love in Egypt?

July 2011 – The Egyptian revolution awoke hopes of a new era of gender equality and of greater sexual liberty. But how likely is Egypt to have its own summer of love?

No revolution for Egyptian women

July 2011 – Despite the political earthquake that has rid Egypt of its patriarch-in-chief, attitudes to gender remain largely the same. Now women must stand up for their rights.

Atheists: Egypt’s forgotten minority

July 2011 – Egyptian atheists and religious sceptics are a minority that exists in reality but not in official statistics.

Hostility to the West may shape Egyptian politics

June 2011 – Islamists and Arab Socialists share a history of clashing with foreign influences.

The fall of Egypt’s symbol of progressive Islam

May 2011 – Joining itself with an authoritarian regime caused harm to the millennium-long history of al-Azhar University.

Egypt’s counter-revolutionary bogeyman

May 2011 – Fear of retaliation from the old regime shouldn’t be used to limit Egyptians’ hard-won freedoms and attack peaceful protesters.

New Egypt, new media

March 2011 – Egyptians will no longer tolerate paying for the state-run newspapers that peddled Hosni Mubarak’s propaganda.

Should Egypt’s next president be old guard or vanguard?

March 2011 – Amr Moussa is very popular with Egyptians, but should Egyptians play it safe with the best of the old guard or choose someone from the vanguard.

No country for old generals

March 2011 – In addition to withdrawing from the political front line, the army must also leave justice to the legal system.

The Muslim Brotherhood: empowered by its weakness

March 2011 – The revolution in Egypt succeeded because it had no Islamist face, and the Muslim Brotherhood has benefited from maintaining a soft presence.

An Arab model for democracy

February 2011 – The time is ripe to crystallise a creative vision for Egyptian democracy, one that can perhaps be used as a model by other Arab countries.

Mazel tov Egypt

February 2011 – There are Jews who refuse to succumb to fear and would like to extend their warm congratulations to Egyptians on the occasion of their revolution of hope.

Freedom from fear

February 2011 – The Egyptian revolution could usher in freedom to the Middle East, but Arabs and Israelis must break free of the chains of prejudice, history and fear.

Diary of Dictator M, aged 82¾: fight, not flight

February 2011 – In the second leaked extract from his secret diaries, President M is enraged by what he sees as an unpresidented act of cowardice and treachery.

From political revolution to social evolution

February 2011 – To truly succeed, Egypt’s revolution needs to trigger a profound evolution in every strata of society.

Political idealism triumphs over Egypt’s cruel political reality

February 2011 – The power of an idea proved stronger than tanks, water cannons and bullets.

The Arabic for freedom

February 2011 – By toppling their dictator, Egyptians have made history, but now they need to ensure that this revolution does not become a footnote in their history.

Open letter: Mubarak, we loathe you

February 2011 – Mr Mubarak, you have the extraordinary knack for snatching mediocrity from the jaws of greatness. But the Egyptian people will write their own future.

Dispatch from Tahrir: Fighting Egypt’s petty dictators

February 2011 – Outside the utopian bubble of Tahrir, petty dictators are filling the security void.

Why Mubarak shouldn’t stay until September

February 2011 – If Mubarak’s security apparatus tightens its grip on power, Egypt will turn into a North Korean-style dictatorship.

When the revolution comes…

February 2011 – A democratic Egypt will not go to war with Israel, but for the cold peace to thaw, Israel must ends its occupation.

Tombs for the living

February 2011 – Egyptians’ lavish burial spaces offer comfort to relatives – while 1.5 million less fortunate Cairenes live among the dead.

Diary of Dictator M, aged 82¾: a panicked call for Tunisia

February 2011 – In the first leaked extract from President M’s diaries, he calms an alarmed fellow dictator in Tunisia.

The death throes of Arab dictatorships

February 2011 – Will the unfolding popular revolutions in Tunisia and Egypt lead to the region’s dictators falling one after the other like dominos?

The Jasmine Revolution

February 2011 – Tunisia’s revolution will spread the scent of its jasmine to oppressed nations all over the region.

America’s missed opportunity in Egypt

1 February 2011 – There’s no reason to believe that the uprising will bring radical Islamists to power – so why isn’t the US supporting it?

Mubarak: the life and times of a dictator

February 2011 – To grasp the enormity of the change undergoing Egyptian society, it is well worth considering that the majority of Egyptians have never known another president than Hosni Mubarak.

Egypt’s other Mubaraks

February 2011 – The imminent fall of Egypt’s dictator should embolden Egyptians, especially the young, to deal with the mini-Mubaraks holding Egyptian society back.

Baksheesh and social tipping points

January 2011 – Egypt’s ‘baksheesh’ culture helps poor people get by and maintains relative social peace, but it encourages subservience.

Egypt’s regime of self-preservation

January 2011 – Muslim-Coptic tension is just one aspect of a wider turmoil that will worsen until real democracy takes hold.

The mother of all clashes

December 2010 – It’s true that football divides Egyptians today, but it also, paradoxically, unites them on so many other levels.

توجهات جديدة للنزاع العربي الإسرائيلي

ديسمبر 2010 – تتجاوز القضية الأخلاقية لصالح زيادة التفاهم في أهميتها قضية انتهاك حقوق النشر، حسب رأي الصحفي خالد دياب، رداً على قرصنة ترجمة رواية مصرية مشهورة إلى العبرية

The curse of the Nile

December 2010 – Egypt is certainly the gift of the Nile, but the great river could become east Africa’s curse. What are the chances of a future ‘water war’?

Just say moo

December 2010 – Animal rights activists are calling for global vegetarianism, but the Middle East is not ready to sacrifice its meat-eating lifestyle.

Novel approaches to the Arab-Israeli conflict

November 2010 – Despite infringing on the author’s copyright and wishes, the unauthorised Hebrew translation of a bestselling Egyptian novel highlights how the word can help blunt the sword.

The Arab myth of Western women

November 2010 – Unflattering as some Western stereotypes are of Arab men, Western women also get a bad press in conservative Arab circles.

Egypt hires PR firm to revamp its image

November 2010 – A picture is worth a thousand words, but a doctored picture is a scandal that can be worth a thousand articles to cover.

The Arab man’s burden

November 2010 – Some in the west are more likely to believe in elves in Middle Earth than in Arab men in the Middle East who are secular and do not oppress women.

Egyptian government fears a Facebook revolution

November 2010 – Talk of banning Facebook is only the surface of a greater crackdown on independent media by an insecure government.

Less Catholic than the pope

October 2010 -‘Catholic’ education thrives in Belgium, but the decision between principle and pragmatism is not easy when choosing a school.

Egypt’s heartless economic growth

October 2010 – Economic growth in Egypt has mainly benefited the well-off, with many of the poor falling off the tightrope of the poverty line.

A battle for the soul of every Egyptian

September 2010 – Converts have become pawns in Egypt’s increasingly bitter standoff between Muslims and Christians.

‘Collaborator!’ – a charge that has plagued Egypt

September 2010 – Egyptians are routinely accused of being in league with foreign forces, from the US to Iran, but this propaganda is wearing thin.

الحب في زمن النزاع

قرارات المحاكم الأخيرة في مصر وإسرائيل تُظهِر مدى الشك الذي وصل إليه اليهود والعرب الإسرائيليين

Love in times of conflict

September 2010 – Arabs and Israelis tend to view personal relationships that cross the divide between them with suspicion, perhaps because individual love has the power to undermine collective hate.

A shop window on Egyptian history

September 2010 – The buyers of Harrods are reportedly planning to take over Egypt’s oldest department store, Omar Effendi, whose story mirrors Egypt’s modern history.

Religious freedom at stake in Egypt

August 2010 – If you don’t fast during Ramadan in Egypt, lie about it; hide it. Otherwise, you might land in jail.

Make Ramadan torture-free in Egypt

August 2010 – It’s Ramadan, but the Egyptian police continue to practise brutality and torture. This year, they should set a better example.

I say you want a revolution, Egypt

July 2010 – Activists in Egypt should look to the hippy movement of the 1960s for a successful model in bringing about long-term social change.

Overplaying Egyptomania

July 2010 – Egypt’s pavillion at the Shanghai Expo 2010 misses the mark of modernity and dwells excessively on the country’s ancient past.

Criminal injustice in Egypt

July 2010 – Egyptian police and a decades-old emergency law stand in the dock of public opinion following a young man’s alleged murder.

Love and loathing in the Middle East

June 2010 – By calling Egyptians who marry Israelis traitors, Egypt has betrayed a group of vulnerable people who are guilty of little more than loving across enemy lines.

By the book

May 2010 – Following the lead of Islamists, Egyptian Christians are trying to ban an award-winning novel because it ‘insults’ Christianity.

Stop press

May 2010 – Jordanian journalists believe they do not enjoy enough freedom – a malaise shared with the rest of the Middle East. But why?

We don’t need no segregation

April 2010 – Sexual harassment in Egypt is leading to calls for gender segregation. But is hiding women really the solution?

By bread alone

April 2010 – The Egyptian government looks to overhaul its bread subsidy system, but experts warn of a possible popular backlash.

A question of upbringing

April 2010 – In multicultural families, deciding on where to raise your child is no easy matter and has profound implications for the future.

Egypt’s uneasy political truce

April 2010 – Egypt’s secularists and Islamists agree on one thing: Mubarak must go. But when he does, how long will they stand united?

Death of a president

March 2010 – If exaggerated rumours of President Mubarak’s death become fact, where will the end of his one-man show leave Egypt?

Egypt’s online struggle for democracy

March 2010 – In Egypt, political advocacy is being sparked online, on sites like Facebook, but there is significantly less room for movement in Egypt’s real world than in its virtual world.

Splitting Egypt’s political atom

March 2010 – Can Mohamed ElBaradei’s campaign for the Egyptian presidency save a country close to political meltdown?

Learning from the Sadat years

March 2010 – The Camp David accords between Egypt and Israel remain controversial, but Arabs and Israelis can draw lessons from Anwar el-Sadat’s quest for peace.

The tunes of change

February 2010 – For a new generation of young Egyptian artists, music is not just about love.

For Allah’s sake!

February 2010 – Christians across the Muslim world use ‘Allah’ to refer to ‘God’, so why has this led to violence and controversy in Malaysia?

Egyptian football’s pious turn

February 2010 – The national team is increasingly flaunting its Muslim religiosity. Where does that leave Christian, let alone secular Egyptians?

My plan for a democratic Egypt

January 2010 – With the right leadership, Egypt could rid itself of nepotism and inequality to become a prosperous and egalitarian society.

Israel’s welcome barrier

January 2010 – Israel is building a new anti-migrant barrier along its Egyptian border – leaving Mubarak’s regime with one problem fewer.

Should America fear a democratic Egypt?

January 2010 – The depiction of Egypt as a country of religious fanatics who await a breeze of freedom to turn Egypt into a radical regime is far from accurate.

Polygamy for all

January 2010 – A Saudi journalist is demanding that women be given the right to four husbands. Should equality mean monogamy or polygamy for all?

Tis the season to be sociable

December 2009 – The British are famously reserved, but so are the Belgians. Let’s break the ice and make the public sphere more friendly.

A brother and a scholar

December 2009 – Prominent Muslim Brotherhood member Kamal Helbawy talks about his research and ending the misconceptions that tie terrorism to Islam.

Faith in our children

November 2009 – Much as we’d like our children to hold the same things dear as we do, we should have enough faith in them to let them choose their own belief system.

The power of false reporting

November 2009 – Reckless journalism is held responsible for the violence and tensions following the Algeria-Egypt World Cup playoffs.

Closing the ‘hijab murder’ file

November 2009 – The life sentence imposed on Marwa al-Sherbini’s killer shows that European Islamophobia exists but is not institutionalised.

Algeria and Egypt play political football

November 2009 – Preparations for a World Cup showdown are getting heated, but does the animosity between Algeria and Egypt run deeper?

Beyoncé: saint or sinner?

November 2009 – As the singer prepares to visit Egypt, Christian and Muslim fundamentalists agree: Beyoncé is the root of all evil.

Egypt’s fearful development

October 2009 – Egyptians are slowly overcoming their fear of authority, but old habits die hard.

التسوية الفلسطينية عبر الصندوق الانتخابي

قد حان الوقت لمحمود عباس أن يذهب بكرامته وفتح المجال للشعب لكي يقررعبر صندوق الاقتراع

Palestinian reconciliation through the ballot box

October 2009 – To break the destructive deadlock between Fatah and Hamas, Mahmoud Abbas should step down as Palestinian president, call immediate elections and organise referenda on the future course of the Palestinian struggle.

Church and state in Egypt

October 2009 – New attempts to address the divide between Egypt’s Muslims and Christians must be supported, not undermined, by the state.

Tips for survival

October 2009 – For many Egyptians, tip-based and street jobs are their only means of  survival.

Honour: Made in China

September 2009 – The ‘Chinese hymen’ may make pre-marital sex safer in a patriarchal society but a woman’s honour should not lie between her legs.

Fatwa fads

September 2009 – From fashion tips to adult breastfeeding – rulings by some clerics range from the eccentric to the downright bizarre.

Is Mubarak really a force of stability?

September 2009 – Providing more legitimate access to power should be the way to guarantee security and stability in Egypt.

The fast and the furious

September 2009 – Police in Egypt are using Ramadan to target secularists. The government must do more to protect individual liberty.

The fine art of repression

September 2009 – Egyptian Culture Minister Farouk Hosny’s bid to be the chief of the UN’s cultural wing has aroused suspicion among liberals and conservatives alike.

Covering heads and veiling poverty

September 2009 – In Egypt, Hijabless women are becoming a shrinking and marginalised minority who have to keep their bare heads down.

غطاء للرأس وغطاء للفقر

انكمش عدد النساء المتبرجات (غير المحجبات) وصاروا أقلية مهمشة في مصر

The Arab Republic of Investment

August 2009 – Egyptians should not be too harsh on poor Gamal Mubarak. He’s bound to become the president of the many entrepreneurs and professionals and not of the few who live on less than $2 per day.

Hijab and dagger

July 2009 – Egyptian outrage at the brutal murder of Marwa Sherbini, the ‘hijab martyr’ is understandable. But If Egyptians want better justice for Muslims in Europe, then they should demand more justice for non-Muslims at home.

Egypt: Power has already been transferred

July 2009 – What the speculation over political succession in Egypt overlooks is that Gamal Mubarak has effectively taken over the reins of power from his father already.

Tehran syndrome

July 2009 – Despite its dislike of the Ahmadinejad government, Egypt fears the spread of the Iranian protest contagion to its own borders, but why are Egyptians not showing any symptoms of the ‘Iranian flu’?

What’s love got to do with it?

June 2009 – For Egyptian marriage offices, the search for profit has replaced the search for a perfect union.

Egypt: a society of taboos

June 2009 – Rather than encouraging people to make moral choices, religious groups in Egypt are imposing their values by law.

The Middle East must look to the future

April 2009 – A secular society confines religion to the spiritual sphere where it belongs, and leaves worldly affairs to human resourcefulness.

Secularism in a veil

April 2009 – An outward appearance of Islamism disguises the increasingly secular reality of some Arab and Muslim societies.

Attack of the killer texts

March 2009 – Rumours of deadly SMS messages are symptoms of a worrying trend in Egypt – the unstoppable rise of superstition.

People of the border

January 2009 – Rafah, a city divided between Gaza and Egypt, and between war and peace, prays for the opening of the border crossing.

All tied up in knots

December 2008 – In Egypt, getting married has young people all tied up in knots.

Egyptian men behaving badly

September 2008 – Egyptian women have broken their silence on sexual harassment and are demanding the right to go out in public unpestered.

Inverting the pyramids

August 2008 – The world isn’t short on wacky theories about Egypt’s greatest monuments. The reality is less fun, but more illuminating.

  • Jasmin

    The Egyptian revolution inspire the whole world ,It will take time to get over these problems