Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Terrorist attack on freedom of expression in Egypt

My new blog is just an exemplification how the culture of terrorism and hatred became so entrenched in Egypt. It is so horrific to imagine. But before reading the sad news and developments, I would like to remind you of Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights:

"Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers."

Freedom of expression beaten by terrorism:

This sad news is coming from our Cairo, Egypt: An Egyptian writer, known for his articles against Muslim fundamentalism, said he has quit writing after receiving death threats from a militant group operating in Egypt. The death threats include shooting him from rooftop from a neighboring building or from speeding car at any time. I personally sympathize with him and not considering him as coward as many did, simply because there will no one to protect him and because I also respect anyone's choices in life.

Sayed Al Qumni told journalists few days ago "They [the militants] threatened to kill me unless I repent within a week". Knowing that the Egyptian government is lenient with the culture of terrorism that is spreading in schools, mosques and everywhere where oppression is exercised, AlQumni’s safety is not guaranteed anywhere in Egypt. Egypt failed to protect Naguib Mahfouz, Nobel Prize laureate, and he was stabbed in his neck. Instead of going to the roots of the problem and why fundamentalists in Egypt are growing in numbers and operating, security personnel is increasing. Anyone will be scared when seeing all these persons in uniform in Cairo in comparison to many places in the world, however this is not a guarantee to any security and safety.

Poor Al-Qumni could be killed while many Egyptians believing that he is an infidel deserving his destiny just as many Egyptians still believe that Farrag Foda is an infidel who deserved what had happened to him. The answer is pretty simple. Where is AlQumni at TV shows in Egypt? He is nobody. I don’t remember seeing him or even seeing someone talking about him and his invaluable researchs on TV. Where is the space dedicated to this man to give him the chance to talk to Egyptians in order to defend himself instead of waiting to his death sentence? Was he given time to spread his enlightening ideas on TV? It is because all material published or broadcast in governmental Egyptian media is supporting extremists and fundamentalists and not freedom of expression or enlightenment. I didn’t see Farrag Foda’s friends and colleagues on TV or radio following his assassination by Islamists in Egypt.

Al-Qumni, who holds a PhD in comparative religion, is Al-Azhar graduate, but his only “sin”, that he tried to reform Islam. The death threat was sent to him via e-mail from a militant group calling itself "Jihad in Egypt" and it is not the first. I read it in Arabic on the internet and it is disgusting.

I wonder how many Egyptians know how he looks like. I bet we can count them on our fingers, because the government is restricting his freedom to express his opinion as it goes against fundamentalists. But fundamentalists are given more prominence of course. This man could have been protected through the Egyptian people if he was given space to enjoy popularity as many uneducated sheikhs (Muslim clerics) were given hundreds of hours on TV adding nothing to the values of humanity, instead they became idols for ignorance and terrorism. It is at the end of the day, that the peoples of the countries to defend their values not a security guard in front of a building.

Scotland Yard in Egypt:
Since the arrest of Magdy ElNaashar in relation to the London attacks, Egypt has been desperately denying this guy’s links to Al-Qaeda. It is actually very funny; did the government of Egypt get any confirmation from Al-Qaeda? Are there any contacts between Egypt and AlQaeda? Were faxes are emails received and sent confirming that this Egyptian citizen has no records at AlQaeda networks? As an Egyptian citizen, I have the right to transparent flow of information. I am entitled to know why the Egyptian regime is denying links without saying why.

I am personally not surprised at the accusations pointed at this man. The amount of rubbish that is flushed daily into the brains of Egyptians qualifies them to join any fundamentalist group. Is the government going to hire security on the brains of 70 million Egyptians. Naguib Mahfouz, a victim of terrorism, is protected by guards but not protected from the culture of terrorism.

Alqumni could save millions spent on security guards. I am sure many westerners don't know about him cause the regime was always keen on putting its collaborators at the front as innocent faces as human rights advocates and reformers…etc when they are only regime informers.

Egyptians support more attacks:

During September 11, 2001 attacks on NY and Washington, I received phone calls from some Egyptians rejoicing over the attacks on the US. And they were not poor or uneducated.

Four years later, July 7, 2005, there was no change in some of the Egyptians’ reactions. Some Egyptians are still waiting for more attacks on the western civilized world, which means that the regime of Egypt had never joined the world to stop terrorism and sadly will never. What did the government and the regime do four years after 9/11 to stop sabotaging the peoples’ minds and empower people with enlightenment? The answer is nothing. There is more terrorism and hatred towards the values of life in mass media and education programs. Welcome to the new budding generation of terrorists who will be so ready for AlQaeda recruitment.

It is getting worse and Al-Qumni is the evidence to the victory of terrorism. The problem is that the world will find very tight mechanisms to fight terrorism because the free world is so serious about it. What will happen in Egypt is that fundamentalist Islamists will start killing the freedom of other Egyptians because this will be their only haven to kill more innocents whom their only sin is believing in freedom. The result will be very bloody, and another groups of Taliban will be ruling Egypt. There will be no opposition as the seeds of the ideology of hatred are sowed, thanks to Mubarak Regime.

In solidarity with Al-Qumni:


At 7:49 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It seems that terrorism is indeed gaining ground. As has been pointed out, it has driven Dr Al-Qumi to stop writing and this has made our minds poorer, and our hearts with a little more fear. It’s a bloody shame that the Egyptian government cannot protect him or anyone else for that matter from the Islamist-Maffia. On an international level, Egypt claims to fight the terrorism fire with fire but domestically, the battle is much more arbitrary and even in some cases counterproductive. Egypt is indeed giving Islamism/extremism a free hand. Even if it were a give-and-take situation this is a dangerous game to play and I believe Egypt gambled and lost. I would like to remind the reader that not acting is also a form of action. Condoning will be interpreted by the Islamist as approval.

I am not sure where the current situation will lead to, but Egypt is rapidly loosing its grip on Islamism and extremism. Is this happening on purpose? I don’t know. But what I do know is that at the moment Egypt is deliberately not fighting back at Islamism and extremism at the domestic front. This is something you can hold Egypt accountable for. Also because the combat of terrorism is the responsibility of the whole world.

At 9:07 PM, Blogger Freedom for Egyptians said...

Thank you for your message and support. I don't know should we wait for a regime that doesn't substantially show any signs for serious effective policies aganist terrorism that is actually mushrooming in our society and showing results day after day. How can we (the people and supporters of freedom) be an effective tool against terrorists under the regime's oppression? I am afraid we will become victims like AlQumni.

At 9:45 PM, Blogger Freedom for Egyptians said...

Why Dr. AlQumni is the one who has to go and not the terrorists from the mass media and mosques?

At 10:14 PM, Anonymous Karim Elsahy said...

Set up a protest against terrorism tomorrow in the streets of Cairo. Do it. Call everyone you know, join together, link up this Egyptian blogosphere and to the streets.

Karim Elsahy

At 12:58 PM, Blogger myfingerisonthebutton said...

You've opened my eyes to new things. We all need to pray for Egypt, the economic successes that the world has praised it for in the past couple of years are going to go down the drain thanks to the islamists terrorists.

At 7:24 PM, Blogger Freedom for Egyptians said...

to myfingerisonthebutton,

Thanks for you comments. I am so happy that my blogger opened your eyes to something that's why we share. I visited your blogger, keep the good job!


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