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Leak allegedly reveals government using media to shape public opinion - Daily News Egypt

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Leak allegedly reveals government using media to shape public opinion

Officials purportedly pick media personnel to convince people that Al-Sisi is targeted

TV presenter Youssef Al-Husseini, one of the media personnel allegedly used by officials to convince people that Al-Sisi is targeted and shape public opinions (Photo from public domain)
TV presenter Youssef Al-Husseini, one of the media personnel allegedly used by officials to convince people that President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi is targeted and to shape public opinion
(Photo from public domain)

A new leak allegedly reveals that government officials instructed leading media figures to appeal to people’s emotions and encourage them to support Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi during his presidential campaign in 2014.

The leak, aired by the pro-Morsi satellite channel Mekamelin Monday night, allegedly features Al-Sisi’s office head Abbas Kamel and the military spokesperson Ahmed Ali, speaking at the time of Al-Sisi’s bid for the presidency.

Kamel allegedly told Ali that he and Al-Sisi wanted “our media personnel” on TV “to stage a mood which incites people”, Kamel said, referring to Al-Sisi supporters who, he instructed, are required to believe that there is a defamation campaign targeting the current president.

The media should drive the Egyptian people to protect the candidate and stand by him, without letting anyone question someone as “honourable” and “good” as Al-Sisi.

He instructed to spread the message that it is inappropriate to speak negatively about “our icons” and to protect a “situation” where there is a “brave, excellent, Egyptian national man”.

“The regime bans certain people from appearing in the media while giving instructions to others because it does not want criticism or exposing its corruption,” said Gamal Eid, executive director of the Arabic Network for Human Rights Information (ANHRI).

Kamel also allegedly instructed the disclosure of the notion that Al-Sisi sacrificed a lot, although he could have remained in his strong position in the armed forces.

The media should also discourage any thoughts that “such people could do wrong or forge [elections]”, and promote the idea that “they are transparent and honest”, Kamel allegedly instructed.

“Do not defame the only good thing [in reference to Al-Sisi’s candidacy] in our lives” he reportedly added to the instructed media messages.

“This is how I want things handled [in the media],” Kamel allegedly said, giving instructions to use “our” TV presenters, such as Ahmed Mousa, Wael Al-Ebrashy, Ibrahim Eisa, Azza Mostafa, Naela Omara, Osama Kamal, Youssef Al-Husseini, presenters on Al-Qahera and Al-Nas TV channel, and the “kids” on OnTV channel.

Kamel purportedly told Ali to give orders that the media should say that Al-Sisi is the only candidate whose security is threatened, along with his wife, children, and grandchildren.

Kamel could be heard in the purported leak ordering Ali to write down the instructions he had been giving.

On 6 December, the same channel aired a leak, allegedly between members of the Supreme Council of the Armed forces (SCAF), discussing ousted president Mohamed Morsi’s detention in a maximum security navy prison in Abu Qir, contrary to a law that forbids the detention of civilians in military facilities. The military figures also discussed ways to cover up the detention and falsify information related to his whereabouts, alleged the lawyer during the trial in which Morsi is facing allegations of espionage.

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  • Learned_Goyim

    It’s far more difficult to govern an educated crowd who’s informed. It’s even more difficult to keep them under the boot indefinitely. As the arab spring movement has shown, without an educated mass you can’t achieve meaningful change. It will unfortunately take years, if not decades for any democratic aspirations to materialize. It took about 40 years for East Europe to make that transition with some of the highest literacy rates in the world. So unless there’s a genuine reform in education with a focus on critical thinking and reasoning, Egypt and the rest of the Arab world will be ruled by dictators who will be vouched for by a corrupt media and pseudo-intellectuals-for-sale.
    True story to illustrate: I was visiting post-revolution Egypt on a research project in early 2012 attending a conference about good governance. I found out from talking to local journalists covering the event that their presence was solely driven by free food at the buffet. I thought it was a joke but when I saw them litteraly running and pushing to line up for food, I realised the bigger joke that democracy needs food first, education second with the hope some real change.
    In the meantime, Sissy and company will enjoy a very long ride as long as they keep talking about terrorism instead of education and state security instead of food security.

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