Saturday, February 2, 2013

Al-Jazeera Video: Egypt opposition calls for President Morsi to step down

"Clashes broke out in Cairo's Tahrir square on Friday, but it was actions the security forces took to stop the protests which have shocked Egyptians. A 23-year-old man was brutally beaten and killed, and it was caught on live television. Video footage shows a man being stripped naked and beaten by security forces before being bundled into a van. The actions of the police forces were condemned by the Interior Ministry calling it an 'isolated incident', but Egypt's main opposition has voiced its support for protesters calling for the end of the regime and Muslim brotherhood's control. Al Jazeera's Erica Wood reports."

Egypt protests galvanised by video of police beating naked man

Opponents of Mohamed Morsi say the footage proves that the president has chosen to order a brutal crackdown,
A video of a protester being beaten and stripped naked has galvanised protests against the police and government in Egypt.
Hamada Saber, a middle-aged man, remained in a police hospital on Saturday, the morning after he was shown on television, dragged over naked tarmac and beaten by half a dozen policemen who had pulled him to an armoured vehicle near the presidential palace.....

But the police action against protests this time has been far deadlier than it was even a few months ago, when bigger crowds demonstrated against a new constitution. That suggests to opponents that Morsi has ordered a tougher response.
Khaled Daoud, a spokesman for the opposition National Front said: "The instructions of the interior minister to use excessive violence in confronting protesters does not seem like surprising behaviour given the clear incitement by prominent figures in the presidency, and leaders of the Muslim Brotherhood to which the president belongs, and other parties in solidarity with them."......."

Reforming the police is the solution, not emergency law

Khaled Fahmy , Saturday 2 Feb 2013
Ahram Online

"President Morsi, his group and government, have failed to resolve Egypt's present crisis, and have deepened it. And while the opposition flounders, only the youth of the revolution can be relied upon......"

The revolution, back in black

The black bloc must provide Egyptians with a positive vision if they want their struggle to succeed.

By Mark LeVine

".......Revolution as creative destruction

In the wake of the Brotherhood/FJP's electoral victories, the anemic performance of the official "opposition" represented by the "National Salvation Front" and a population desperate for some sort of economic recovery, revolutionary forces were on the defensive in the last few months. But the mass protests and then violence surrounding the Port Said verdict and the second anniversary of the start of the uprising on January 25 has generated a recalibration of the political scales. The black bloc has become a public (and even more so media and government) symbol of the militant opposition that is quite literally on the march against the still unstable emerging order.
It's hard to overstate the dangers a well- yet self-organised and decentralised protest movement could present to Egypt's power elite. The country's military chief, Abdel Fatah al-Sissi, is not exaggerating when he says ongoing protests threaten a "collapse of the state"; nor are prosecutors wrong in considering those deploying black bloc tactics as "terrorists". For what is the goal of revolution if not the collapse of the existing state, and how can protests aimed at that end not terrorise those presently in power?
All true revolutions involve a supreme act of creative destruction - an anarchic and ordering impulse that both destroys the old order while creating something new to take its place. The reason most revolutions either fizzle out or are hijacked or taken over by forces other than and often opposed to those who first led them lies precisely in the failure to move successfully from the destructive to the creative phase and discourse. This is as true of the axial religious revolutions, including the Abrahamic faiths, as well as for modern political revolutions in Mexico, Russia, China, or Iran.
It's anarchic impulse stems directly from the fact it is directly taking on the existing system. But if one state - that is, arrangement and network of power relations - is to be replaced by another one, a new system has to replace the one that disintegrates. Similarly, every true revolution is a powerful combination of what the sociologist Manuel Castells calls "resistance" and "project" identities; the former being narrow, closed and hostile to outsiders, the latter open, inviting and future-oriented.
You can't bring about the "downfall of the system" and the creation of one in its place without both. As important, you can't in the long term keep tens of millions of people supporting destruction if the positive vision of the future is not there for them to see. The problem is that while the two halves of the creative destruction equation naturally overlap for much of a revolutionary period, at some point the destruction has to subside and the creation has to become the dominant process, otherwise the revolution becomes either self-destructive and nihilistic, coopted, or redirected (often by the military, as epitomised by the phenomena of Bonapartism or Caesarism). In such a situation, one time supporters will turn against it in favour of the stability of a restored if changed ancien regime (if in new clothes).
What made Tahrir truly revolutionary during the 18 days, but sadly too few days since, was that in the Square you could see, feel, the possibility of a new Egypt, a different Egypt, an Egypt that could fulfill the dreams of the majority of its inhabitants. Young and old, rich and poor, Muslim and Copt, metalhead and Sufi, everyone radiated "silmiyya" - peacefulness - even as they screamed at the top of their lungs for days on end.
It was clearly a liminal, paradoxical experience, and one which, as Georgetown professor and Jadaliyya co-editor Adel Iskandar reminded me in a recent conversation on the present situation, was itself a two-part phenomenon: "the one from January 25 to February 4 which was violent, confrontational and black bloc-esque... and the Tahrir of the Utopian imaginary that dominated between February 4 to 11... The two continue to exist and manifest with oscillating frequency."
The key question is, of course, how to control the oscillation, particularly when you can't really tell either when the tipping point has arrived and which way it is tipping. For two years now the Egyptian "state" has been in this liminal state; the structure at its core - that is, the deep state of power holders through whom the vast majority of the networks of power and wealth flow in Egypt - has remained seemingly stable, and is enlarging a bit as the Brotherhood and its own networks of power and patronage are, with some difficulty, absorbed into this elite. But the state remains gelatinous and porous outside of the core nucleus, and if the opposition can siphon enough power and legitimacy away, the system could, as General al-Sissi warns, move towards collapse.
Millions, if not tens of millions of Egyptians understand that if the state structure rehardens or concretises in the shape it's apparently taken, they will be either frozen into pretty much the same place they were under Mubarak, or pushed even closer to the margins or completely outside the state. Indeed, the "state of emergency" once again declared, now by a democratically elected President, and the organised attacks on women by forces clearly aligned with the existing power regime, reflects this desperate need to clear as many people away from the power networks as possible before the new system hardens.......

However we might want to judge their tactics more broadly, their commitment and loyalty to other protesters are hard to question. When women were being brutally attacked in Tahrir Square last week, beyond the ability of groups like Operation Anti-Sexual Harassment to protect them, black block activists have literally appeared out of nowhere to take on the often armed groups of attackers and protect the women and other activists.......

It's clear that black bloc tactics and the militant revolutionaries deploying them will not on their own carry Egypt further than the Zapatistas have pushed Chiapas (which, interestingly, has a Human Development Index ranking of .646, almost identical to Egypt's .644), never mind Mexico as a whole. But if they succeed in throwing the country's power-holders off-balance and reinvigorating the youth led-opposition, and can provide a creative and ultimately positive vision and strategies for continuing the revolution into its third year and convincing increasing numbers of ordinary Egyptians to keep up he struggle for real freedom, dignity and social justice, they will have played an important role in Egypt's tortured transition from an authoritarian to truly democratic system."
The Syrian Karzai......
Another Day......Another Position. 
How Do You Spell Flip-Flop?

Friday, February 1, 2013

VIDEO: Egyptian police strip, beat man in front of presidential palace

Footage from Al-Hayat satellite channel shows security forces stripping a grown man naked and beating him in front of Egypt's presidential palace on Friday, 1 February 2013

Ahram Online, Friday 1 Feb 2013

Al-Jazeera Video: Clashes outside presidential palace in Cairo

Al-Jazeera Video: Egypt's Port Said still simmering with anger

International Aid for the Syrian People is Finally Arriving! By Emad Hajjaj

The Fragmentation of the Arab World Continues.....Wait for the New Republic of Shubra!

"Protesters waiving a new flag for , a symbol of their frustration, chanting we want our own state."

Guardian Video: Egypt's revolution two years on: 'The fear is gone'

"At 22, Mariam Kirollos is a feminist and passionate advocate of human rights. She explains how Egypt's 2011 revolution broke her fear barrier and made her realise that millions of Egyptians have the same aspirations as hers. During the protests, she says, differences disappear and men and women are equal before the revolution."

Sexual attacks on women in Egypt

Amnesty International

"Almost every girl and woman – regardless of age, social status or choice of attire – who has walked the streets or taken public transport in Cairo, has experienced some form of verbal or physical sexual harassment.
This isn’t new. For years, Egyptian women’s rights activists and others have called on the authorities to recognize the seriousness of the problem.

There needs to be a fundamental shift in institutionalized attitudes that discriminate against women.
The Egyptian authorities must introduce legal reforms, prosecute perpetrators and address root causes, because the plight of women who have experienced sexual violence has been ignored.
Blame is placed on the victims for being dressed “indecently”, or for daring to be present in “male” public spaces.
The horrific testimonies emerging following protests commemorating the second anniversary of the “25 January Revolution” have brought to light how violent mob sexual attacks against women have happened, but have rarely been brought to public attention........"

Ahhhhh....After the "Success" of the Yemeni "Revolution": Yemen: Scores of children on prison hunger strike after minor sentenced to die

"Despair and hopelessness pervade in a Yemeni prison where scores of children are on hunger strike to protest at their conditions and about a fellow inmate's recent death sentence, activists have told Amnesty International.

Since Sunday, 77 alleged juvenile offenders have refused to eat their prison meals at the central prison in the capital Sana'a until the authorities comply with a list of demands made in a handwritten signed statement.

They launched the hunger strike in response to the sentencing to death of Nadim al-‘Azaazi on 26 January for a crime he is accused of committing when he was reportedly 15. 

Executing juvenile offenders is expressly prohibited in Yemen's Penal Code and international human rights law – the Yemeni authorities must live up to their obligations and overturn this death sentence immediately,” said Philip Luther, Middle East and North Africa Programme Director at Amnesty International.

“The reports we've received from inside Sana'a Central Prison point to truly appalling conditions faced by juvenile offenders, and we urge the authorities to act immediately to ensure children are treated humanely and not kept behind bars for longer than their sentences.”

Some of the children held in Sana'a Central Prison have apparently finished serving their sentences but remain in detention due to their inability to pay court-imposed fines......

“This cry for help shines a light on the Yemeni authorities' failure to respect the human rights of children kept behind bars, and it must serve as a call to action to ensure that due process is followed and prison conditions are improved for all juvenile offenders in the country,” said Luther. ......"

Thursday, January 31, 2013

Assad's "Response" To Israeli Bombings of Syria

By Emad Hajjaj.

Al-Jazeera Video: الاتجاه المعاكس- إيران والربيع العربي

"Published on Jan 30, 2013
ألم تفقد إيران رصيدها في العالم العربي بسبب وقوفها مع ثورة دون أخرى؟ أليس حرياً بها ترميم علاقتها بالشارع العربي قبل فوات الأوان؟ أم إن موقفها كان متوازناً؟
تقديم: فيصل القاسم
تاريخ البث: 29/1/2013
الضيوف: أمير الموسوي، ياسر الزعاترة

Morsi Mubarak: A Great Cartoon by Khalil Bendib

Egypt, by Clay Bennett

Syria threatens to retaliate after Israeli air strikes - live updates

The Guardian

"Israeli air strikes

Expect to see more Israeli air strikes against Syria, warns analyst Nicholas Noe, who is concerned that the crisis threatens to escalate into a regional conflagration.
Noe, co-founder of and expert on Hezbollah, said: "Unfortunately if the past is any guide to the future we are in for more Israeli air strikes, and a political process to settle this is not going to be forthcoming."
Speaking to the Guardian from Tunis he said:
All of the factors exist for a much wider escalation and conflagration … It is not really important for us to understand exactly what was hit – what it is very clear is that there is activity in Syria. Things are moving very quickly … The fundamental point is that there are these [chemical] weapons and there are these factions that are extreme. That’s the catastrophic mix that we are all facing, and the Israelis took action. We knew this was coming because the underlining factors for greater involvement by outside powers was simply building.
There are chemical weapons sites in Syria – perhaps the third largest stockpiles in the world – and you have an array of actors, some of them committed to very extreme forms of political action. The only way there could not be more air strikes is if the situation stabilises, and there is very little prospect of the situation stabilising at all.
There are signs that everyone is frightened, and that’s why you can read the Israeli strike as a note of caution to the international community … Hopefully the Americans and the Russians get the message and they try to use their levers of influence to pull everyone back from the brink. If they don’t it is going to be very hard to restrain this activity ...
The fundamental problem is that the Pandora’s box has been opened so wide – there are so many actors on the ground that don’t care about finding a political settlement, and they have the weapons to make this a prolonged struggle – that its very hard for these great powers to magically turn off the spigot.
Noe suggested that Israel is as concerned about chemical weapons reaching al-Qaida-linked rebel groups in Syria such as Jabhat al-Nusra, as it is about weapons reaching Bashar al-Assad’s ally Hezbollah.
He added:
Unfortunately I don’t think this extraordinarily right wing Israeli leadership is interested in sending messages of peace.
They see some of the greatest enemies to the north, Hezbollah and Syria, as very vulnerable and I’m greatly concerned that there is a strong desire among parts of the Israeli establishment who want to use this opportunity to strike some strong blows against their strategic enemies.
On the other side … there is an increasing ascent of people wanting to pull the whole temple down on their enemies, and that’s very dangerous......"

Syria may respond to Israeli air strike, says ambassador

'Scientific research centre' north-west of Damascus was damaged in attack, according to Syrian state TV

The Guardian
Here is the Syrian Regime's "Response" So Far!

"Syria's ambassador to Lebanon has said Damascus has the option to respond to what it says was an Israeli air strike on a research centre on the outskirts of the Syrian capital on Wednesday.
Syria could take "a surprise decision to respond to the aggression of the Israeli warplanes", Ali Abdul Karim Ali was quoted as telling a Hezbollah-run news website.
"Syria is engaged in defending its sovereignty and its land," he said, without spelling out what the response might entail......"

World Report 2013: Challenges for Rights After Arab Spring

How to Build Rights-Respecting Democracies After the Dictator Falls
February 1, 2013

"(London) – The euphoria of the Arab Spring has given way to the sobering challenge of creating rights-respecting democracies, Human Rights Watch said today in issuing its World Report 2013. The willingness of new governments to respect rights will determine whether those uprisings give birth to genuine democracy or simply spawn authoritarianism in new forms.
In the 665-page report, its23rd annual review of human rights practices around the globe, Human Rights Watch summarizes major issues in more than 90 countries. With regard to events in the Middle East and North Africa known as the Arab Spring, Human Rights Watch said the creation of a rights-respecting state can be painstaking work that requires building effective institutions of governance, establishing independent courts, creating professional police, and resisting the temptation of majorities to disregard human rights and the rule of law. But the difficulty of building democracy does not justify seeking a return to the old order, Human Rights Watch said.

The uncertainties of freedom are no reason to revert to the enforced predictability of authoritarian rule,” said Kenneth Roth, executive director of Human Rights Watch. “The path ahead may be treacherous, but the alternative is to consign entire countries to a grim future of oppression.”
The tension between majority rule and respect for rights poses perhaps the greatest challenge for the new governments, Human Rights Watch said........

“As the Islamist-dominated governments of the Arab Spring take root, perhaps no issue will better define their records than the treatment of women,” Roth said......"

Some inconvenient truths

By Stephen M. Walt

"Here's a little fantasy for you to ponder: what if one of our senior foreign policy officials accidentally swallowed some sodium pentothal (aka "truth serum") before some public hearing or press conference, and started speaking the truth about one of those issues where prevarication, political correctness, and obfuscation normally prevail? You know: what if they started saying in public all those things that they probably believe in private? What sorts of "inconvenient truths" might suddenly get revealed?
In that spirit, here's my Top Five Truths You Won't Hear Any U.S. Official Admit.

#1: "We're never gonna get rid of our nuclear weapons."........

#2: "We don't actually care that much about human rights.".....

#3: "There's not going to be a two-state solution.".....

#4: "We like being #1, and we're going to stay there just as long as we can.".......

#5: "We do a lot of stupid things in foreign policy. Get used to it." 

Al-Jazeera Cartoon: Both the Israeli Air Force and the Syrian Regime Bomb the Outskirts of Damascus!

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Is Egypt on the Brink of Collapse? Sharif Abdel Kouddous Reports From Restive City of Port Said

Democracy Now!

"Ongoing mass protests have led the Egyptian government to declare a state of emergency and the country’s defense minister to warn of the potential "collapse of the state." We go to Democracy Now! correspondent Sharif Abdel Kouddous in the city of Port Said, where thousands have filled the streets in defiance of a nighttime curfew. "[Egyptian President Mohamed] Morsi is trying to do what Mubarak did for so many years — trying to use the police on the streets to solve his political problems," Kouddous says. "Right now, Egypt is ungovernable."....."

Egypt: Emergency Powers Excessive

Detention Without Judicial Review; Trials Lacking Appeal Rights
January 30, 2013

"(New York) – President Mohamed Morsy of Egypt should reverse the emergency powers he issued on January 27, 2013, Human Rights Watch said today. The emergency powers give the police the authority to detain people in three cities for up to 30 days without any judicial review, and permit trials of those detained before emergency security courts. Judicial review of detention is a fundamental right that may not be removed, even during emergencies.

On January 28 the Shura Council, Egypt’s partially elected upper house, passed a law that would give military officers the right to arrest civilians, which would therefore give them the right to bring civilians before military courts. The law will come into force after ratification by the President and publication in the official gazette which is yet to occur. President Morsy should order an end to military trials of civilians and instruct Egyptian military commanders to bring all civilians they arrest before civilian courts, Human Rights Watch said.

“The government has the duty to take reasonable steps to protect security, but this knee-jerk response granting the police excessive powers is certainly not the answer,” said Joe Stork, deputy Middle East director at Human Rights Watch. “What is glaringly missing are orders to the police and military to exercise restraint in their use of force and to warn that all official abuses will be punished.”......"

The American Empire, RIP

January 31, 1968 marked the beginning of the end….
by , January 30, 2013 

".....In any case, the Tet offensive marked the beginning of the end of public support for our post-WWII foreign policy of global interventionism, and although there have been several attempts to roll back the Vietnam Syndrome since then, none have enjoyed anything but temporary success. Political support for grandiose foreign policy adventurism has simply evaporated, and no conjuring of ideological ghosts and demons – fear of "militant Islam," the alleged shame and perils of "declinism," nostalgia for the "American Century" – will raise it from the dead.
What this means, in the long term, is that America is slowly but surely retreating from the world stage – not out of any conviction, but out of necessity. The warlords of Washington may wish to conquer the world, but they are constrained from attempting to carry out their desires not only by economics but also by politics. The simple fact of the matter is that, after sixty or so years of global adventurism, America is economically and psychologically exhausted. We have neither the means nor the will to stay on the course set for us by the great internationalists of the 20th century. The 21st century is slated to be the age of a resurgent nationalism – which, in this country, has nearly always been inward-looking rather than outwardly aggressive.
In the short term, however, there is no telling what will happen, and before we reach the final stages of imperial senescence it may well be that we’re in for a whole series of bloody and debilitating wars.
It’s nice to know, however, that history is on our side. Now if only we can stop ourselves from blowing up the world before the curtain is drawn on the Age of Conquest."

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Al-Jazeera Video: Empire - Syria and the US: The complicity of silence


"Empire looks at the history of the US relationship with Syria and the current state of the armed uprising with interviewees: Richard Murphy, the former US ambassador to Syria; Douglas Little, a history professor at Clark University; Hasan Abu Hanya, an expert on Islamic movements; Michael Scheuer, the former chief of the CIA bin Laden Unit; and Abu Hasan, a Jabhat al-Nusra commander in Syria. We explore who is right and who is wrong, and what is - or should be - the Obama policy towards Syria, with our guests: Bassam Haddad, the director of the Middle East studies programme at George Mason University, who is also editor of the online magazine Jadaliyya, and author of several books, including his latest 'Business Networks in Syria: The Political Economy of Authoritarian Resilience'; David Pollock, a senior fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy; Juan Cole, a professor of Middle East history at the University of Michigan, and author of several books including his most recent Engaging the Muslim World; and Stephen Starr, a journalist and author of 'Revolt in Syria: Eyewitness to the Uprising'."

Real News Video: The PLO and the Road to Neo-Liberalism

Raja Khalidi: The credit bubble driving development in the West Bank is not sustainable 

More at The Real News

Egypt Faces ‘Mubarak-Like’ Morsi

"CAIRO, Jan 29 2013 (IPS) - Concerns are mounting over Egypt’s future after the outbreaks of violence that marked the second anniversary of Egypt’s January 25 Revolution. Massive anti-government rallies led to ongoing clashes between protesters and security forces that have left at least 40 people dead. Cities along Egypt’s Suez Canal faced a government-declared state of emergency.
The revolutionary fervour that erupted on Friday in ten out of Egypt’s 27 provinces has not been seen since the uprising two years ago,” Ahmed Maher, general coordinator of Egypt’s 6 April youth movement, which participated in the anti-government demonstrations, told IPS.........

According to Maher, Morsi’s only way out of the current crisis is to “form a new government drawn from various political forces and constitution-amending committee comprised of scholars; dissolve the Shura Council (the upper house of Egypt’s parliament currently endowed with legislative powers); and accept the resignation of the prosecutor-general.
If he fails to do this, we will escalate our demands,” he added, in a veiled reference to possible calls for Morsi himself – elected only seven months ago – to step down........"

The US and Syria: Six lessons from the past

There are six valuable lessons to be learned from Washington's historical experiences in trying to manipulate regimes.

By Marwan Bishara

".....Unfortunately, America rarely remembers how much Washington has mucked around in other countries even though there are valuable lessons to be learned from past experiences.
Lesson one: Decades of meddling have hardened Syrian distrust of foreign powers.
The first American-Syrian encounter occurred soon after the CIA was established in 1947 - merely a year after Syria gained its independence.
US government documents - kept secret for decades but declassified in 1991 - testify to a policy that was meant to keep the Syrian nationalists down, Soviets out, and Americans in........

Lesson three: Dictators or "transitional authoritarian leaders", as Washington dubbed its clients in the 1950s, don't transition to democracy.
Nor will Assad ever give up his power voluntarily. .....

Lesson four: Sectarianism is not an opportunity for the US to isolate Iran; it's a regional disaster in the making.....

Lesson five: Better to remain detached but clear, than to raise false expectations......

Lesson sixDon't preach democracy while simultaneously distrusting the Syrian people.
A number of Syrian opposition leaders told me Washington had made any grant of meaningful support to them contingent upon their embrace of America's agenda for Syria and regarding its future relations with Iran and Israel.
This will prove counterproductive. Previous administrations have tried and failed to dictate to the Syrians how to manage their national affairs.
It's high time to allow Syrians the political freedom and peace they deserve, but have been denied since independence."

Monday, January 28, 2013

Egyptian protesters defy curfew, attack police stations

"(Reuters) - Egyptian protesters defied a nighttime curfew in restive towns along the Suez Canal, attacking police stations and ignoring emergency rule imposed by Islamist President Mohamed Mursi to end days of clashes that have killed at least 52 people.
At least two men died in overnight fighting in the canal city of Port Said in the latest outbreak of violence unleashed last week on the eve of the anniversary of the 2011 revolt that brought down autocrat Hosni Mubarak.
Political opponents spurned a call by Mursi for talks on Monday to try to end the violence.
Instead, huge crowds of protesters took to the streets in Cairo, Alexandria and in the three Suez Canal cities - Port Said, Ismailia and Suez - where Mursi imposed emergency rule and a curfew on Sunday.
"Down, down with Mohamed Mursi! Down, down with the state of emergency!" crowds shouted in Ismailia. In Cairo, flames lit up the night sky as protesters set police vehicles ablaze.
In Port Said, men attacked police stations after dark. A security source said some police and troops were injured. A medical source said two men were killed and 12 injured in the clashes, including 10 with gunshot wounds.
"The people want to bring down the regime," crowds chanted in Alexandria. "Leave means go, and don't say no!"......"

Al-Jazeera Video: ما وراء الخبر

"Published on Jan 27, 2013
ما وراء الخبر- تصريحات رئيس الوزراء الروسي ديمتري مدفيدف بأن فرص بقاء الأسد في الحكم تتقلص.

تقديم: محمد كريشان
الضيوف: فيشيسلاف ماتوزوف، غسان إبراهيم، فايز الدويري.
تاريخ البث: 27/1/2013

Al-Jazeera Cartoon: Who is the Worst Murderer?

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Al-Jazeera Video: Egypt's Morsi declares 'state of emergency'

Morsi Declares State of Emergency


Al-Jazeera Video: Egypt's Port Said hit by renewed deadly clash

"At least six people are dead in Egypt, after violence broke out during funeral processions for more than 30 people killed in clashes on Saturday.

The unrest comes after a court handed down death sentences to a group of football 

President Mohamed Morsi is due to address the nation later on Sunday.

Al Jazeera's Rawya Rageh reports from Port Said."

Al-Jazeera Video: Egypt's Port Said hit by renewed deadly clash

"Riots in Port Said have killed one person and injured 416 others at the funeral of people killed in clashes triggered by death sentences on supporters of a local football team. Medics said on Sunday that 17 people had sustained gunshot wounds after violence erupted at a march of thousands of mourners in the Egyptian city for 31 people killed on Saturday in the canal city. Al Jazeera's Mike Hanna reports from Cairo."

البحث في أصول الناس

By Azmi Bishara

27 يناير 2013
من مظاهر التخلف السياسي والثقافي البحث في أصول الناس لا في أفكارها وافعالها، والحكم على الإنسان بموجب أصله وفصله ونسبه. هذه من مظاهر التخلف الذي لا يمنع من استخدام معايير الكفاءة والمهنية في بناء المجتمع فحسب، بل يفرغ معايير الحقوق والمساواة أمام القانون في السياسة والدولة من مضمونها. في أميركا انتخب رئيس من اصل أفريقي ومن اب مسلم مهاجر الى أميركا (استخدم خصومه هذه الأمور في التعبئة ضده، ولكنه انتخب في النهاية) وفي بلادنا التي لا يمكن تخيل مثل هذا الأمر من أساسه ما زالوا يبحثون في أصول والد الشخص ويعيرونه بأمه إذا اختلفوا معه. حتى في الجاهلية تذمروا من هذه الظاهرة، ولكننا ما زلنا نلتقيها في الثقافة والممارسة اليومية.
لا يمكن التعامل مع المواطنة وحقوق المواطن كفرد، ولا بناء الأمة المواطنية والمجتمع الحديث بهذه العقلية. لا تقتصر هذه الظاهرة على الأوساط المحافظة، فما زلت تجد حتى قوميين واشخاصا يسمون أنفسهم تقدميين يناقشون خصومهم ويحطون من قدرهم بمناقشة أصلهم وفصلهم ونسبهم ومهن أهلهم. هذه أمور تحتاج إلى وقت لتتغير، ولكن مر وقت طويل طويل، وه لن تتغير اذا لم نناقشها بصراحة ونحاربها.

A dangerous road trip reveals extent of the devastation in Syria

Amal Hanano
The National

"......Journalists have a habit of placing the word "liberated" in quotation marks, as in "so-called-liberated", or "not-really-liberated-but-they-say-so" liberated. This is far from the truth. On the ground, liberation is an important part of daily life. The town is free of street warfare, snipers, and shabiha (pro-regime militia). Free of arrest and intimidation. In Salqeen, citizens are able to focus on other aspects of civic life, such as forming the civil counsels and local committees that are dedicated to cleaning the streets and organising local elections. Liberated means that you can live almost without fear. Your only fear is that bombs will drop on you. As one activist told me, "If you're killed by a bomb falling from the sky, you must be very unlucky." Another popular belief was the indisputable, "No one dies before his time."

The main street was blocked by a black FSA jeep. I waited in the car with Ammar until the prayers were over. Ammar, 20, was a construction worker before he became a FSA fighter. He said there was a family in Idlib who had 55 martyrs, explaining the reason why they try not to fight in the same battles together so the mothers don't lose all their sons at once.
I watched anxiously from the car, waiting for the prayers to end, waiting for what I never dreamed I would see before March 15, 2011. The men walked from the mosque to the central circle and began chanting and waving flags. They sang song after song, both ones I knew and ones I didn't, but I was standing with them this time - the only woman in the circle - on the other side of the lens, calling for freedom in the land of the oppressed, chanting "We will die so Syria can live."......."

New Revolution Against New Constitution

"CAIRO, Jan 27 2013 (IPS) - Hundreds of thousands hit the streets countrywide on and after the second anniversary of Egypt’s Tahrir Square uprising Jan. 25 to protest the policies of President Mohamed Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood from which he hails. A chief demand was the abrogation – or modification at least – of Egypt’s newly-approved constitution.
“The amendment of the new constitution is one of the primary demands of the people and parties taking part in anniversary rallies,” Magdi Sherif, head of the centrist Guardians of the Revolution Party told IPS from Cairo’s Tahrir Square. “President Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood must heed the voice of the opposition.”....."

Brotherhood leader urges for emergency powers amid Egypt-wide clashes

As angry protesters set buildings ablaze and block thoroughfares throughout Egypt, Brotherhood leader El-Beltagy urges the presidency and security ministers to impose emergency law

Ahram Online, Sunday 27 Jan 2013

"Muslim Brotherhood leader Mohamed El-Beltagy urges Egyptian authorities on Sunday to "step in with full strength in order to prevent the killing of civilians," in response to the clashes that have overtaken major cities in Egypt on the second anniversary of the revolution and after a court issued a controversial death sentence.
"What are you waiting for to interfere?" he asked in a Facebook message directed to President Mohamed Morsi, Prime Minister Hisham Qandil, Interior Minister Mohamed Ibrahim and Defence Minister Abdel Fattah El-Sisi.
"You need to stop the arson attacks, blocking roads, bridges and tunnels and provide security," he admonished. "It is your duty to immediately intervene to face this thuggery through via all legitimate means provided by the constitution and the law, including declaring an emergency state."........."

البحث في أصول الناس

By Azmi Bishara

27 يناير 2013
من مظاهر التخلف السياسي والثقافي البحث في أصول الناس لا في أفكارها وافعالها، والحكم على الإنسان بموجب أصله وفصله ونسبه. هذه من مظاهر التخلف الذي لا يمنع من استخدام معايير الكفاءة والمهنية في بناء المجتمع فحسب، بل يفرغ معايير الحقوق والمساواة أمام القانون في السياسة والدولة من مضمونها. في أميركا انتخب رئيس من اصل أفريقي ومن اب مسلم مهاجر الى أميركا (استخدم خصومه هذه الأمور في التعبئة ضده، ولكنه انتخب في النهاية) وفي بلادنا التي لا يمكن تخيل مثل هذا الأمر من أساسه ما زالوا يبحثون في أصول والد الشخص ويعيرونه بأمه إذا اختلفوا معه. حتى في الجاهلية تذمروا من هذه الظاهرة، ولكننا ما زلنا نلتقيها في الثقافة والممارسة اليومية.
لا يمكن التعامل مع المواطنة وحقوق المواطن كفرد، ولا بناء الأمة المواطنية والمجتمع الحديث بهذه العقلية. لا تقتصر هذه الظاهرة على الأوساط المحافظة، فما زلت تجد حتى قوميين واشخاصا يسمون أنفسهم تقدميين يناقشون خصومهم ويحطون من قدرهم بمناقشة أصلهم وفصلهم ونسبهم ومهن أهلهم. هذه أمور تحتاج إلى وقت لتتغير، ولكن مر وقت طويل طويل، وه لن تتغير اذا لم نناقشها بصراحة ونحاربها.