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Attack as the best mode of defence in Egypt

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The Muslim Brotherhood seems to be worried about freedom of expression, although they must realize that they cannot oppress those freedoms directly.

Karim Adel
22 October 2012

One of the oldest ways of oppressing freedom is to encourage people to practise it and then come down on them like a ton of bricks for making that choice. People are beginning to realize that if despots can’t stop someone opposing them, they will take a pot shot at anything they see them doing, whether it is the expression of a particular political point of view or the creation of a work of art  - whatever they come up with first…

The Muslim Brotherhood seems to be worried about freedom of expression, although they must realize, since they arrived in power after a revolution, that they cannot oppress those freedoms directly, but will have to create a counter media to take on all the media criticism that president Morsi is most likely to find coming his way during his first four year period. 

The editors of government newspapers as well as many other important media people have been fired and replaced by Muslim Brotherhood-affiliated names during the first couple of months of Morsi's presidency. Many Brotherhood-owned TV channels, newspapers and magazines have sprung up in the past year, and a month ago a phalanx of so-called ‘peaceful demonstrators’ surrounded Media City on the outskirts of Cairo, stopping the traffic for hours while they targeted with their protests those studio bosses who they claimed were responsible for creating channels of corrupt media.

These militias have also spread all over the cyber world, as thousands of young Muslim Brotherhood recruits have been encouraged to swarm against anti- Brotherhood online media, deploying thousands of verbal attacks and un-Islamic insults that would make a local street thug blush.

Muslims acting against their own faith to serve what they claim to be an overall Islamic goal is not a new phenomenon for us either. The only surprising thing about this is the lower depths that seem to be reached by these villains on each renewed attempt. In the case of sheikh Abdullah Badr who has verbally attacked actress Elham Shaheen for her anti-Brotherhood comments, calling her a whore on public TV, how can this man actually still add the title Sheikh to his name after this? Is there no shame? We wish he had stopped at that, but it gets worse. Abdullah Badr also went to the street, giving out anti- Elham Shaheen posters in front of a Cairo courthouse -   posters depicting very unprofessional photo-shopped fakes of what was supposed to be a semi-nude Elham! Such accusations without a shred of evidence in Islam constitute a major sin!

Now when your son returns home with a pack of nude magazines and porn movies and uses the term ‘whore’ and worse vocabulary, don’t jump to conclusions and blame Gangster Rap or the internet. It might be that he has fallen under the influence of a fake sheikh!

Stop the secrecy: Publish the NHS COVID data deals


To: Matt Hancock, Secretary of State for Health and Social Care

We’re calling on you to immediately release details of the secret NHS data deals struck with private companies, to deliver the NHS COVID-19 datastore.

We, the public, deserve to know exactly how our personal information has been traded in this ‘unprecedented’ deal with US tech giants like Google, and firms linked to Donald Trump (Palantir) and Vote Leave (Faculty AI).

The COVID-19 datastore will hold private, personal information about every single one of us who relies on the NHS. We don’t want our personal data falling into the wrong hands.

And we don’t want private companies – many with poor reputations for protecting privacy – using it for their own commercial purposes, or to undermine the NHS.

The datastore could be an important tool in tackling the pandemic. But for it to be a success, the public has to be able to trust it.

Today, we urgently call on you to publish all the data-sharing agreements, data-impact assessments, and details of how the private companies stand to profit from their involvement.

The NHS is a precious public institution. Any involvement from private companies should be open to public scrutiny and debate. We need more transparency during this pandemic – not less.


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