It has been announced by the prosecutors in Egypt that a total of 20 journalists are going to be put on trial for belonging to the now outlawed Muslims Brotherhood and spreading lies that are tarnishing the good image of the country abroad.
For many who wanted to believe that the removal of President Mohammed Mursi from power was a move in the “deepening of democracy” and not a military coup, they got to think again.
There are now over 22,000 detainees that have been systematically rounded up in the past seven months since Mursi’s ouster for their opposition to the military regime. They include over 2,000 children and are being kept under appalling conditions.
In the course of protest against the coup, nearly 7,000 have lost their lives at the hands of the country’s security forces since General Abdul Fattah Sisi led a counter-revolutionary coup to remove Egypt’s first ever democratically elected leader.
On the third anniversary of a popular revolt that saw Hosni Mubarak removed from power on 25 January, Tahrir Square was once more open, but only to those showing their ‘love’ for Sisi. While at the square, they celebrated and chanted their calls for General Sisi to run for president.
The irony is that Egyptians, who on this day, three years ago, demanded the exit of a military dictator in the person of Mubarak, are now excited about another military strongman who removed a legitimate and popularly elected government.
Elsewhere, protestors met brute force and found their ways blocked. The morning after, 49 people were dead with over 1000 arrested just for expressing their views. Over 400 anti-coup demonstrators were arrested in Cairo alone.
The caretaker government which is making every effort to disenfranchise the membership of the Muslim Brotherhood by branding the movement as “terrorist,” has now changed the roadmap to the transition by scheduling presidential elections before parliamentary elections.
To groups opposed to the military-backed regime and other observers, the change in the roadmap is aimed at fast-tracking General Sisi to the presidency. The military command has since promoted the general to ‘field marshal’ and has accordingly ‘approved’ his candidacy for president.
As the perversion of democratic processes continues in Egypt, the numbers of protesters on the streets, however, seem to continue growing. There is criticism that the new constitution which was passed in a referendum on 19 January, favours the army at the expense of the people, and fails to deliver on the 2011 revolution that led to the fall of Mubarak.
It is perhaps these protests that make the regime sit uncomfortably with a free press that will expose its brutality as it cracks down on dissent in the name of fighting Muslim Brotherhood’s “terrorism”.
In the context of the Middle Eastern neighbourhood, Egypt is too important to be left alone and the “deep state” will not give up easily. Soon, Field Marshal Sisi will become the president, quickly form a political party with which he will, a la Mubarak, post an unprecedented victory in parliament. However, the resolve of a people in fighting for freedom will not be stymied or thwarted by their decimation, humiliation, torture and incarceration.
Egypt will rise. Again.
Egypt will Rise. Again.
6 min read