One month after General Abdelfattah el-Sisi appointed him vice president - following the arrest of President Mohamed Morsi and forcible end of Morsi's government, Nobel Laureate Mohamed ElBaradei isreportedly in Vienna, his second home, having quietly left Egypt behind after resigning his position in the wake of the bloody clearing of the pro-Morsi sit-in at Cairo's Rabaa el-Adaweya Mosque, where several hundred protesters - some of them armed - died in a brutal police rampage.
ElBaradei was never a savvy politician. His cleverest move - returning to Egypt amid the broiling revolutionary fervor surrounding Zine El Abidine Ben Ali's downfall in Tunisia - could be argued as a lucky twist of fate. His persona, down to his very vocal pitch, was not built for populism. Those who observed his public appearances outside of Cairo said his aides connected better with the crowd. His climactic appearance in Tahrir Square during the 18 days ended with him surrounded by a mob, struggling to be heard through a megaphone. Many Egyptians regarded him as a half-foreign, too-liberal aristocrat who lived in Austrian salons. Others found ways to blame him, as chief of the International Atomic Energy Agency, for enabling the US-led invasion of Iraq. Read More
The image above was posted on Twitter at 10:6pm in Egypt on Thursday by an account named @nadoo. It was accompanied by text, which read, "The day we lost tahrir, meena daniel pointing. We really need not say more." It tagged another Twitter account, @3askarkazeboon, which means "the military are liars" in Arabic, and is the name of an activist campaign that took shape over 2011 and 2012 and whose goal was to expose human rights abuses - including the killings of protesters and thousands of military trials of civilians - that took place under the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces, when the military ran Egypt's affairs after the fall of Hosni Mubarak. (Omar Robert Hamilton posted a similar image on Instagram on Friday.) Read More
What follows is a brief Q & A, conducted today, with Abdel Mawgoud Dardery, a former MP from Luxor with the Muslim Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party who previously served on a delegation to Washington, DC, and is a frequent voice for the organization in Western media.
Dardery, who is in Cairo during the ongoing crisis, warns that US support for the military-backed ousting of President Mohamed Morsi risks damaging relations with the Muslim world and suggests third-country mediation for reconciliation negotiations. He says arrests of the Brotherhood's leadership has not damaged the movement's ability to coordinate its efforts.
Families have stockpiled food and water, drivers have slept nights in petrol lines that snaked for city block after city block, and power cuts have rippled across the governorates and major cities. Half a dozen people have died in a spasm of violence that threatens to become a full-blown seizure when mass protests against President Mohamed Morsi break out today. Headquarters of the Muslim Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice Party have been attacked and burned throughout the Nile Delta, and his supporters’ rallies assaulted. Brotherhood toughs have banded together outside their offices wearing hard hats and makeshift shields and carrying homemade guns, ready to bludgeon or blow away what they fear is a coming wave of paid street thugs, the very embodiment of the counter-revolution.
Morsi’s opponents, sometimes backed by police, have also taken to the streets with firearms. Longtime revolutionaries uneasy with the violent omens and new, questionable allies have swallowed their hesitation and prepare to march on the presidential palace. As protesters sacked a Brotherhood office in Alexandria on Friday, someone in the crowd stabbed to death a young American teacher filming with his camera. In beleaguered Port Said, already subject to gun battles between citizens and police that killed dozens in March, a gas tank exploded at an anti-Morsi rally, reportedly killing one man and horribly maiming many more. Rumors flew that the protest had been bombed.
The country is gripped by expectant hysteria, like a Twilight Zone version of the hours before a World Cup final: nearly 90 million penned-in bystanders waiting on the opening whistle of a match to be played for keeps with guns and knives by partisans they hardly recognize as their own. Read More
(Originally published by the Guardian.)
By Evan Hill and Muhammad Mansour in Cairo
Egypt's armed forces participated in forced disappearances, torture and killings across the country – including in Cairo's Egyptian Museum – during the 2011 uprising, even as military leaders publicly declared their neutrality, according to a leaked presidential report on revolution-era crimes.
The report, submitted to President Mohamed Morsi by his own hand-picked committee in January, has yet to be made public, but a chapter seen by the Guardian implicates the military in a catalogue of crimes against civilians, beginning with their first deployment to the streets.
The chapter recommends that the government investigate the highest ranks of the military to determine who was responsible.
More than 1,000 people, including many prisoners, are said to have gone missing during the 18 days of the revolt. Scores turned up in Egypt's morgues, shot or bearing signs of torture.
(Read the leaked document.) Read More