-------- "This is the time for action not only words, use your God given gifts to develop this country, dont be afraid to speak up, and feel PROUD THAT U R EGYPTIAN." -------- Mohaly, Feb 2011

Saturday, November 24, 2012

831) Kolena Gaber Salah !!

As if I am posting that post today ...Post 700 
after more than 2 years and a revolution.
Nothing has changed ... 
Nothing has changed... 
Nothing has changed.
Gaber Salah is not a coincidence ... 
Gaber Salah is the new Khaled Saeed, 
and hopefully the last one.


Saturday, November 17, 2012

830) "Bab El Khoroug" .. Is it our Way Out?!

Since the mega split that happened in the 19th of March Referendum, and many Egyptians – if not most of them- are wondering; “What is our WAY OUT?” Where are we heading? .. It has been discussed on TV, Radio, Newspapers, Social Media, everywhere except among those who have the power (SCAF and now Ekhwan). No roadmap was drawn or a path was set that can contain people together and work on the long term (as always mentioned in this blog).

Less than couple of weeks ago I had a board meeting at Nahdet El Mahrousa, and my fellow board member, and AUC colleague Ayman Ismail - a great guy by the way - has insisted that I don’t go home unless I buy a copy of the new Novel for Dr.Ezzeldin Choukri Fishere -a former diplomat and professor of political science at the American University in Cairo-  “Bab El Khoroug ; The Exit Gate or The Way Out”. His persistence made me go buy it and even start reading on the same night … The weird thing is I really couldn’t stop reading till the following night where I spent the whole Friday in reading more than 500 pages till I finished the novel with a floundering mind.

The novel analyzes and predicts the political situation of Egypt from 1990 until 2020 through the eyes of Aly Shoukry, the president’s translator and then secretary for information, as he witnesses the revolution and its aftermath. The novel is written as a letter from the Aly to his son, explaining how he ultimately came to betray his country’s nuclear plans to strike Israel and US presence in the area using secretly acquired arsenal.

It was very daring of Dr.Fishere to publish it in Tahrir Newspaper on periodical daily episodes and committing to his readers without even finishing it specially it is concerned with ongoing actions… Dr.Fishere says, “I have been preoccupied by its plot and main characters for a few months, and I had this urge not only to write it but to get it out to the public. I felt if I didn't do it now, it will be overtaken by events – because it is a novel interwoven with current events.” The beautiful and unconventional thing about the Novel is that although you know the end, you keep a real suspense all over the reading, and you can easily relate to each and every single incidence as if you are an eye witness.

“Bab El Kheroug is not just about the bloody upheavals of a divided Egypt, but also about the life and loves; regrets and lessons learned; joys and struggles of the kind and introverted Aly. The characters in Bab El Kheroug are directly involved in the government or politically active in some way. Empowered, active and hopeful, albeit stuck in a vicious cycle, these characters are the product of Egypt’s revolution; they did not exist before January 25th, 2011.” says Asmaa Abdallah, a journalist.

“The old world is receding, but the new one is not there yet. Bab El Khoroug is a beginning, a door I am trying to open for myself and my readers. Maybe all I want is to be able, in ten years, to tell the world: I told you so!” Dr.Fishere adds. The interesting thing is that some of the predicted incidents have already happened in the last couple of months after publishing the episodes.

We have to work together and establish a new generation that gets over what we are facing now and looks at the future in a different way. This is in my opinion – Mohaly- is our only way out.


Link to an Interview with Dr.Fishere about it .. Click Here
Link to the Novel ... Click Here
Buy it from Dar El Sherouk.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

829) Close, Lock, and Seal !!

Since the Islamic stream came to power, I have noticed that there are certain words and expressions that prevailed over others like Closing, Banning, Controlling, Dominating, Monitoring, ..etc rather than Opening, Creating, Cooperating, Respecting,.etc. There are many incidents and issues, but lately the Egyptian society, media, and intellects, were consumed in the issues of closing stores at 10pm, and banning the porno sites. Actually, I am for having a regulation for opening and closing of stores, and I am against the negative effect of porno sites. However, I totally refuse both decisions..

Let me start with the latest, PORN Sites...Before you think that I am promoting Porn Sites, just answer the following questions:

  1. Does the government have a certain definition for Porno sites? Other than the explicit fornication sites, do you consider an article or a blog, or facebook page that contains people on the beach or scientific illustratiomn of body parts as porn? What is the criteria for classifying or banning a website?
  2. Do people log onto porno sites by their own will, or is it obligatory in the web browser? I.e. If someone decides not to log to porn sites, will he/she ever be exposed to them unless he/she digs for it?
  3. Can we really technically control it? I worked for 10 years in the Internet field and managed mega portals like Microsoft Network, and I can assure you that the 100+ Million pounds they gonna spend will be invain as there are many ways to open these sites ranging from stuff for free to application for $10 or $15!! needless to say that the Internet in Egypt will be slower as well.
  4. Who will pay the 100 Million Pounds (announced in Al Ahram)? and how does this come as a priority in public spending?
  5. Did anyone consider the side-effect of this decision in our world positioning in the Telecommunication and Internet field? 

I am afraid that this kind of banning will be a Trojan horse for controlling the content of the net, and blocking whatever pages or application the government doesn't like .. famous bloggers like Wael Abbas, or Alaa and Manal or Mona El Tahaway or even this humble blog can be banned just for claiming that they contain something "doesn't fit with the values of the society" .. Give me a break!!

Moving to the 2nd very much related issue, Closing the Shops @10 and restaurants @12 ... Let me throw a couple of questions as well:
  1. On What basis was this decision taken? 
  2. Why cant it wait till the election of parliament to be fully discussed and apply it in the right way at the right time?
  3. Did the government consult with the owners, and civil societies to study the pros and cons?
  4. Did the government consider the Egyptian culture with all its ups and downs and how to apply the decision while taking it into consideration?
  5. What alternative solutions will the government provide for the side effects of the decision (like increasing in un-employment, security issues, fighting illegal trade and "ghorza" that will flourish after closure hours,...etc).

Again, I am afraid that it is all revolving about the same ancient obsolete ideology of banning and bestowing !!!! the divine supreme government that has "ra3aya" or "3abeed e7sanhom" not civil citizens.


Saturday, November 3, 2012

828) Shari3a, Social Justice, and 3abdo Moota !!

May be the title looks like "samak, laban, tamr hendy" (complete chaos) , but actually the three mentioned topics are extremely related in Egypt after Jan 25th. May be it is a a new version of the be old trilogy of Man, Life, and Control. 

I really wonder what do the people in power (Islamists) really want? Ok, they want the application of Shari3a Law, so what?! The vast majority of our laws t driven from Shari3a, or they want a special interpretation of shari3a that keep them having an upper hand over the people in a way close to what the Catholic Church had in the Dark Ages?!

I am actually optimistic when it comes to this point in specific, because no matter how they try, the Egyptian people wont change easily regarding their perception about life and religion ... A short visit in history will tell you how many sects and groups had governed Egypt, and it has always ended up with its own unique interpretation.. just a unique blend of all.

What really worries me is the change of Culture ... There is a deep change in the Egyptian character that has been always known for decency, kindness, helping others, motivated with the least praise...etc. This culture is changing fast to the opposite and it is clear from the people in streets, protests, songs, movies, writing...etc.. and I consider this change as the root for all evil.

Many people may have got offended by the latest movie "3abdo Moota" but a simple fact is that it had scored the highest movie premier income in the history of Arab Movies (and $1 Million in 3 days). This tells you that this kind of culture is now spreading and actually  is prevailing -without any exaggeration. 3abdo Moota is what they call "She3ar El Mar7ala" or the slogan of the current period/era. I was worried about Egypt when "7ena Maysara" movie was released almost 5 years ago (see post 350), and now I can see this culture standing on a solid ground.

What I want to say is that Shari3a won't help changing the culture back as it was there most of the time and wasn't the reason for the change in the 1st place; but the extreme pressure and injustice that happened throughout the last half a century specially in the last 10 years were the main reasons for this change. The only way back is to have a clear and strong applicable strategy to bring Social Justice to Egypt, and without that neither law or Shari3a will be able to bring Egypt People to what they were.

Time is passing fast, and every year the new culture of aggressiveness, selfishness, laziness is fixing its roots, and every year we will waste will make it harder and longer to change ... At a certain critical point, we wont be even able to change as it will be THE real, final, and genuine Egyptian Culture where 3abo Moota will be the icon of the typical Egyptian citizen then...

So my question now is: Is Social Justice a priority? and if Yes, how and when it will be achieved?