Jackson Diehl: The case for pressuring Egypt’s president

The Commercial Appeal
Date of source:
29 Sep 2015

Excerpts with comments of Cornelis Hulsman on Diehl who follows a pro-Muslim Brotherhood argument without informing his readers. Diehl: The Obama administration has proposed $1.5 billion in fresh military aid [to Egypt] has become, with the arguable exception of North Korea, the largest jailer of peaceful political opponents in the world... No one knows for sure how many nonviolent detainees are being held in Egypt's prisons, but the regime itself has conceded that the number is in the tens of thousands. According to the Egyptian Revolutionary Council, an opposition coalition [CH: linked to the Muslim Brotherhood], there are more than 40,000, including more than 1,000 who have been sentenced to death. The democratically elected president Mohamed Morsi [CH: who undemocratically placed himself above the law on November 22, 2012], deposed by Sissi in a July 2013 coup, is on the death list, along with scores of his top political aides.

At least 18 journalists are still imprisoned in Egypt, along with hundreds of secular liberal activists, including the intellectual authors and leaders of the Jan. 25, 2011, march that touched off the popular revolution against former strongman Hosni Mubarak.

Diehl describes "the harrowing firsthand account of Mohamed Soltan, a 27-year-old American whom Sissi freed in June after 21 months of imprisonment. An Ohio State University alum who worked as a translator and unofficial spokesman at an opposition sit-in after the coup, Soltan somehow survived losing more than half his weight in a prolonged hunger strike, along with torture that included sleep deprivation, repeated beatings and prolonged isolation in a tiny cell."  Hulsman: Diehl should inform his audience that "an opposition sit-in" was organized by the Muslim Brotherhood and their supporters, blocking a major crossing in Cairo for weeks. I don't think one should try to do this in Washington.If he was translator and unofficial spokesman at the sit-in (I even might have met with him, I was at the media center of the sit-in) he was in agreement with the purpose of the sit-in, that was to bring back Morsi through stirring up popular sentiments. That makes him either a Muslim Brother or a Muslim Brotherhood supporter. Soltan's prolonged hunger strike shows his determination to fight the current government of Egypt. He is now released but continues his fight in the USA where his message is that "pressure works." This is precisely what Muslim Brothers want (and I have met several of their leaders in 2013 and 2014); pressure to make this government collapse which would return Egypt to chaos and bloodshed. Is this what Diehl wants? I don't think so but he and other people in the West should realize that the fight of the Muslim Brotherhood against the government of al-Sisi continues in the West. I do not think we should let us be used for partisan interests.

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