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The Islamists are coming

By David Faris It didn’t take long for the admirers of authoritarianism to reject the Arab Spring and to yearn for the simpler days when Arab leadership was passed tidily from father to son. After the first round of Egypt’s parliamentary elections, Western pundits have taken to referring to the results as an “Islamist onslaught” and …

DNE

Taxi to nowhere: Meter running on America’s ME policy

By David Faris Temperatures may be falling across the Middle East as the long, hot summer finally recedes into fall, but the political heat is rising. Arab publics are using their newfound freedoms to express their displeasure with the regional status quo, nowhere more spectacularly than in Egypt, where protestors stormed the Israeli embassy in Cairo …

DNE

More questions than answers about Egypt’s electoral law

By David Faris Hundreds of thousands of Egyptians took to the scorching streets beginning July 8, seeking justice for those killed and injured during the revolution and long-overdue reforms of the Ministry of Interior, among other things. Their steadfastness has already forced Essam Sharif’s government to announce some concessions, and more may be coming. Yet even …

DNE

Let them eat t-shirts: The WSJ’s four-minute solution

By David Faris The neoliberal critique of post-revolutionary Egyptian politics is emerging, and the argument goes something like this: by caving in to demands for social justice, subsidies and welfare, the transitional government is effectively continuing the failed policies of its authoritarian predecessor. High-profile figures like Hussein Salem are being sought for extradition or prosecuted but …

DNE

Khawagas in Paradise

By David Faris Egyptians have just triumphantly finished off the dictatorship of Hosni Mubarak. They did so by taking courageously and peacefully to the streets, in defiance of their own overlords, and in defiance of a pervasive discourse that dismissed Arabs as incapable of and unprepared for freedom. While their revolution remains tenuous, their historic …

DNE

Egypt on the brink

By David Faris In Naguib Mahfouz’s magnificent Adrift on the Nile, written just before the June War, a group of politically and socially alienated Egyptians gather on a houseboat every night to smoke hash and forget about the troubles of their country. Enveloped in a haze of smoke, they drift through the days and nights, …

DNE

Aflame on the Nile

By David Faris In Naguib Mahfouz’s magnificent Adrift on the Nile, written just before the June War, a group of politically and socially alienated Egyptians gather on a houseboat every night to smoke hash and forget about the troubles of their country. Enveloped in a haze of smoke, they drift through the days and nights, …

DNE

Egypt’s real shark problem

By David Faris International attention remains focused on the recent spate of gruesome shark attacks in Egypt. But the real threat is not from wandering Makos in the glittering alternate tourist universes of the Sinai, but rather from the sharks of the regime — the ones who just finished dismembering what was left of Egypt’s sham …

DNE

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