After the arrival of the late Omar Suleiman’s body to Egypt, opinion writers have continued to address the issue of his death in the US condemning a media bias that portrays him as a loyal and patriotic leader. Other columnists continue to analyse Morsy’s last public speech and his announcement of a national campaign on hygiene, criticising the president’s ignorance as to some extremist members of the Constituent’s Assembly.
On another note, the continuation of the Syrian massacre has also pushed some commentators to write about the possible end of Bashar Al-Assad, imagining his execution for all the damage that has followed his dictatorship.
The Post-Al-Assad Syria
Despite admitting the difficulty of sentencing a human being to death, Amr Al-Shobaki feels at ease when imagining the execution of Bashar Al-Assad. Al-Shobaki regards the Syrian dictator as the single Arab ruler whose cruelty and barbarism has exceeded almost every one of his Arab counterparts, apart from his Baathist neighbour and predecessor Saddam Hussein.
This prophetic vision of Al-Assad meeting the fate of Muammar Al-Gaddafi and Saddam Hussein has been enhanced by growing power of the Free Syrian Army (FSA), and lately the bombing operation of the National Security building in Damasucs, which killed among many high-profile security officials, Dawud Rajha, Al-Assad’s Minister of Defence.
It remains unclear whether the operation was conducted by the FSA or by Al-Assad himself, as he feared the rise of Rajha to presidency after his likely fall. Several reports have been uncovered that considered the assassinated Minister of Defence as a prospective president for Syria. What stands clear, however, is that the Syrian people have demonstrated they can stand in front of the most vicious killing machines and will soon grab hold of Al-Assad. Al-Shobaki warns Syrians from transforming the war on Al-Assad into a vengeance campaign against the Alawite sect, and calls on them not to emulate the Iraqi scenario.
‘We do not deserve democracy’
Citing a quote in Al-Masry Al-Youm by an Egyptian citizen, commenting on the recent train crash in Al-Badrashin area, stating, ‘we do not deserve democracy’; Yassir Abdel-Aziz rejects ,talk about the natural weakness of the Egyptian people in the face of oppression and injustice. He considers, for instance, the 23 July 1952 Revolution, which although having deep shortfalls, succeeded in recreating the sense of Egyptian national pride, a feature that was recalled with a greater extent during the 18 days of the 25 January Revolution. In 2011, not only did Egyptians prove their capability of organising a popular uprising against dictatorship, but also led by example in terms of peaceful mobilisation, demonstrated their unique heritage of civilisation, and proved themselves worthy of democracy.
On the other hand, the deliberate curtailment of Al-Badrashin train by Egyptian citizens raises an alarm bell to the extent that the incident can be considered akin to the football violence which erupted in Port Said. This comes at a time when traffic and security chaos has escalated to reach dangerous levels, and are compounded by a rising wave of professional strikes. Abdel-Aziz sees that the only way Egyptians can negate the old canard of ‘we do not deserve democracy’ is their joint action to eradicate this unacceptable state of chaos.
Fatawas of Al-Sheikh Borhamy’s Taxi
Emad Al-Din Hussein
Criticizing an earlier fatwa issued by the Vice-President of the Salafi Call, Yasser Al-Borhamy, calling Taxi drivers not to allow priests in to their vehicles as long as their destination is the church, Emad Al-Din Hussein asserts that this sort of thought must be legally confronted as it initiates flares up of sectarian strife in the country. If this Fatwa is to be implemented, drastic results will ensue, in Hussein’s estimation. Ironically, Hussein writes that Egypt will then have specialized microbuses and taxis for Muslims, who are regarded in Al-Borhamy’s view as true believers, and other transportation vehicles for Christians, whom will be looked at as ‘ infidels’. The writer states that Al-Borhamy is a figurehead of a sect that constitutes almost quarter of the legally dissolved parliament, heightening concerns around the increasing tide of political Islam in Egypt.
The writer affirms that Fatwas such as these will not only provoke non-Muslims, but even Muslims who did not support Mohamed Morsy’s presidency. If Morsy was once serious when he stated that he is a ‘ president for all Egyptians’ then firm action will be taken against people like Al-Borhamy with a decision to immediately pull him out of the Constituent’s Assembly that works on drafting the new constitution.
Israel’s testimony to him
After the death of the former Vice-President Omar Suleiman, Fahmy Howeidi condemns how some media have attempted to whiten his black page and generate a mood of confusion as to whether the man was devoted to Egypt, the ousted regime, Israel, or himself. The writer recalls many situations in Suleiman’s history which cast doubt on his patriotic credentials. There is no doubt that Suleiman’s personal assets do still exist, but Howeidi places emphasis on his political stances. The writer points to an article written by the Israeli political analyst Yossi Mellman entitled, ‘General Omar Suleiman who did not cry one tear during the attacks on Gaza’.
While the deceased assumed his position in 2009, Howeidi states that Suleiman informed officers of the Israeli Intelligence Agency that the victory of Hamas in the Palestinian legislative elections is not a positive sign and even called them the ‘lying Muslim Brothers’ who know nothing but the language of violence. Citing Mellman’s article again, the writer states that Suleiman has not felt a modicum of sympathy for the Palestinians who have fallen during the 2008 attack on the Gaza Strip. Suleiman was even heard insulting the late Palestinian President Yasser Arafat when the latter refused to listen to his advice and halt the uprising.
And what about the garbage inside their minds and the constitution?
Referring to Morsy’s public speech in which he addressed the nation on the occasion of Ramadan and heralded a campaign of hygiene that aims at the removal of any garbage or waste from Egypt’s different neighbourhoods, Gamal Fahmy denounces in this column Morsy’s failure to give priority to clean the minds of many of those around him, and most importantly those who are in the process of writing the new constitution. Indeed, Morsy’s move to start cleaning the streets of the country is a positive one, the writer affirms that his happiness towards the national campaign was only wrecked when one of his friends ironically asked him and what about the garbage affecting many of the minds in Egypt.
The writer then started to think of what meaning there could be in initiating a national campaign on hygiene in lieu of paying more attention to those who are writing the constitution in the Constituent’s Assembly. Referring to many members of Morsy’s presidential campaign, Fahmy writes that they have not been the best guides for Morsy and deliberately neglected to remind him of the importance of cleaning the Constituent’s Assembly first before cleaning the roads of the country.