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Egypt tosses 20 Al-Jazeera reporters in jail

Egypt tosses 20 Al-Jazeera reporters in jail

Fighting terrorism or journalism?

Throwing reporters in jail is worrisome, even if they are from Al-Jazeera.  Did they commit actual crimes, or is it simply an attempt to silence reporting?

Egypt to put 20 journalists on trial on terrorism-related charges

Egypt said 20 Al-Jazeera journalists, including both Egyptians and foreigners, will face trial on terrorism-related charges.

Among them are three journalists employed by Al-Jazeera English, the Qatari-based international news channel. Award-winning Australian correspondent Peter Greste, Canadian-Egyptian producer Mohammed Fadel Fahmy, and Egyptian producer Baher Mohammed were arrested on Dec. 29 in a raid on a Cairo hotel room, which the network was using as a temporary bureau. The Egyptian government alleges that 12 of the Al-Jazeera journalists remain at large, while eight are in state custody, including Greste, Fahmy and Baher.

Authorities have not set a date for the trial or released the full list of the defendants’ names. However, in a statement released by the General Prosecutor’s office, the Egyptian defendants have been charged with “crimes of belonging to terrorist organizations violating the law, calling for disrupting the law and preventing state institutions from conducting their affairs, assault on personal liberties of citizens and damaging national unity and social peace.”

The report went on to say: Egypt has become among the most dangerous and difficult places to work for journalists. This cannot be news…especially to CBS reporter Lara Logan.

Since the ouster of former President Mohammed Morsi, Field Marshal Abdul Fattah al-Sisi has become extremely popular among his countrymen for his aggressive handling of the Muslim Brotherhood.

A video report from CCTV Africa offers some intriguing background:

Based on the handling of Al-Jazeera’s reporters, it looks he may be parlay this approach to become the next president:

Egypt’s top military body, the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (Scaf), has given him the green light to stand for president, in what it says is a response to the “desire of the masses”.

….Field Marshal Sisi himself says he first wants to gauge “public demand” before – as is widely rumoured – stepping down as army chief and announcing his presidential candidacy.

These developments may have contributed to a major snub by John Kerry:

In the short section of Tuesday night’s State of the Union address that touched on foreign policy, President Barack Obama noted that the U.S. was “supporting those who are willing to do the hard work of building democracy,” but did not include Egypt in his list of such nations.

Last Friday, Secretary of State John Kerry also skipped over Egypt in a speech delivered at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, in what one New York Times columnist described as “a glaring omission.

On a more Egyptological note for history buffs like myself: The remains of an ancient port have just been uncovered near the Pyramids of Giza:

They were in use while the pyramids were being built about 4,500 years ago….The archaeologists have been excavating a city near the Giza Pyramids that dates mainly to the reign of the pharaoh Menkaure, who built the last pyramid at Giza. Also near the pyramids they have been excavating a town, located close to a monument dedicated to Queen Khentkawes, possibly a daughter of Menkaure. The barracks are located at the city, while a newly discovered basin, that may be part of a harbor, is located by the Khentkawes town.

As the news and the discovery reveal, Egypt is never entirely what it seems.

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Comments

Even Al Gore purveyor of global warming platitudes should not go to jail.
Maybe the next cycle of the sun will alarm global coolists! Time to sharpen my entrepreneurs pen.

They don’t have a First Amendment over there. So there’s a part of me that says, what’s not to like about the slime-infested media getting abused.

It’s not like they were going to be objective so this is more like shock & awe in Iraq – preventive military takeout.

Naturally I wish every country had a system like ours, or like what ours was designed to be. That requires, however, the educated and moral (in the Judeo-Christian sense) citizenry which G. Washington and other founders thought necessary to the proper functioning of the republic. Egypt’s population is very different in its education level and in its culture. I had a highly-educated elderly Egyptian friend who thought that the best system for them was a benevolent monarchy. He may have been right.

Judging on what we hear from friends in Egypt, both Christian and Muslim, most Egyptians consider al-Jazeera, like its Qatari funders, to be pro-Brotherhood and therefore a danger to public stability and safety. They think of CNN International pretty much the same way; we’ve heard many complaints about the US media and the US government. They think of Obama and Kerry as pro-Brotherhood. They may be right.

In World War II America, a reporter who tried to give the NAZI perspective of events and reported from behind enemy lines would have been tried and convicted of treason.

Now we routinely report the perspective of our enemies.

Frankly, I’m more concerned about the prosecution of Dinesh D’Sousa.

The politically correct attitude of ‘reporters’ being free to spread whatever information they desire without consequence is obviously suited only for a liberal utopian society: reality manifests itself differently.

The best thing Egypt could have done was detain and interrogate these ‘reporters’ in a vigorous manner. The goal is to neutralize the MB and stabilize the home country, not stop the reporting of all information. Perhaps other ‘reporters’ will learn it’s best not to take sides while a governmental coup is in progress. Being the purveyor of regime propaganda while claiming immunity from prosecution is a dangerous game for a ‘snowflake’ – which tend to melt in the heat.

I wonder if they’ll offer tickets during the show trials, or will the PC human rights NGO’s save their bacon? I wonder, do Al-Jazeera journalists even eat bacon? Regardless, the Muslim Brotherhood has been swept back into it’s dusty corner and the common Egyptian (both Muslim and Copt) have an opportunity for some level of peace.

So as long as it’s protesters committing acts of assault and even rape upon reporters, it’s no big deal, water under the bridge, but as soon as the government gets involved in cracking down on open propagandizing for what it has now defined as a terrorist organization, it’s beyond the pale to journalists everywhere?

Actually, the not treating the public rapes as big deals bothers me on a whole other level. There’s not being invited to the right parties, and then there’s that.

    Uncle Samuel in reply to JBourque. | February 3, 2014 at 5:07 am

    It’s the intolerant, misogynistic pro-Morsi Muslim Brotherhood, Islamic supremacist crowd that are committing the rapes.

We do not have the whole story. These ‘journalists’ may have been getting orders from and inciting action on behalf of the Muslim Brotherhood aka Al Queda aka Islamic Jihad aka Islamic terrorists.

Having Al Jazeera spout pro-Islam propaganda…
and Al Gore spout pro-global warming propaganda
and Soros media, Ayers and his ilk spout pro-communist propaganda
and Sharpton/Farrakhan spout pro-black supremacist propaganda
and the LBGTQXYZ lobby spout (unhealthy/dangerous) pansexual/promiscuity propaganda
and having the globalists spout pro-amnesty and open borders propaganda
in the media and in our schools….
and having this be the Politically Correct view – no dissent allowed or be punished by law and
WITHOUT a contrasting dissenting voice of sanity, logic, evidence and truth,
is not in the best interest of society. Period.

At least Egypt and Putin are showing a normal leadership’s protectiveness over their national well-being.

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