Gory social media images that fueled the global Jihadist influx into Syria 18 months ago are back. But this time the outpouring is coming from Egypt.
Before an ultimatum to attack an anti-coup sit-in earlier this week, Egypt's new strongman and coup leader Gen. Abdel Fatah Al-Sissi received one of his warmest endorsements ever - something that might have been torn right out of the steamy pages of the "Arabian Nights".
Saudi Arabian religious scholars are leading an increasingly vocal chorus of Islamic preachers who are urging Muslims and Arabs to support Syrian rebels against what they say are atrocities at the hands of Iran-backed Shiite forces of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
So here I am, an Arab journalist in Silicon Valley, where four out of every four people I meet believe Facebook invented the Arab Spring. Three more weeks here and I may start to hallucinate that Mark Zuckerberg was a Cairo-slums native named Hassouna El-Fatatri, who rotted in a Mubarak prison for advocating personal privacy rights.
Egypt, routinely the cradle for new Arab and Islamic ideologies, is now witnessing the birth of yet another line of thought - Islamic Liberalism. The term is touted now as a panacea for the eight-month impasse that has locked Islamists and their secularist rivals in bitter bickering over how this Arab nation should be governed after the fall of former dictator Hosni Mubarak earlier this year.
Egypt’s most organised political group, the Muslim Brotherhood, is tapping crowds as a new financing method for its nascent TV station and media outlets to be able to compete with well-oiled challengers in corporate and government- run media.
The World Bank, which has often pressed borrowing nations to adopt more robust financial transparency regulations, has refused to disclose the financial records of one of its senior officials despite allegations of corruption, abuse of authority and mismanagement of public funds while he served as a minister under the now toppled Hosni Mubarak regime in Egypt.
Egypt's transitional military rulers reiterated Monday their pledge to hand over power to a civilian elected government and denied they are seeking to carve out a patriarchal role in the country's future political life.
Egypt has cancelled plans to borrow 3 billion dollars from the International Monetary Fund because of conditions that violated the country’s national sovereignty and a public outcry that warned against terms that were blamed for impoverishing many Egyptians.
Egyptian officials are warning that the country, just emerging from a popular uprising that ousted the regime of former President Hosni Mubarak, could be facing a major economic crisis with lagging international aid and foreign investment.
Abeer Fakhry, a young Christian woman, had only wanted to live with a man who would love and respect her, and not with her abusive husband. But within months of trying to escape her marriage, and her faith, Abeer finds herself chased by her family, by the Orthodox Christian Church, by the fundamentalist Islamic Salafi Group and, lately, by Egypt’s top army generals.
Egypt is stepping up its wheat production in a bid to stem the country’s rising dependence on foreign imports that escalated during the 30-year rule of former President Hosni Mubarak, who was ousted in February.
Anger at Egypt’s privatisation programme, involving the transfer of billions of dollars worth of public assets to private hands, aided the Egyptian revolution that elbowed the Western-backed Hosni Mubarak out of office in February, a top army general said.
Egyptian authorities have opened dozens of criminal investigations into hundreds of millions of dollars worth of public land contracts that were awarded illegally to real estate developers associated with former President Hosni Mubarak without proper procedures at below market rates.
The revolution contagion sweeping across the Arab countries has spread to Syria leading to rare protests challenging the grip of the ruling Baath Party on the country. The regime was quick to describe the turmoil as a foreign-inspired plot aimed at punishing the country for its support of groups opposed to U.S. and Israeli policies in the region.