Monday, July 29, 2019

Stranger Things Egyptian version : Alaa Mubarak is accused of solidarity with the MB

It is a strange time when you find Alaa Mubarak is being reported to the High State prosecution for “solidarity with Muslim Brotherhood” !! 

Yes, notorious lawyer Samir Sabry has just done the impossible and accused Hosni Mubarak’s eldest son of “inciting the public opinion against the state in solidarity with the MB” because of a tweet.

It comes at the same time when Alaa Mubarak is facing a huge attack in Egyptian Media Group’s various publications especially Youm 7 that reminds him of his corruption during his father’s reign.
Alaa Mubarak and Hosni Mubarak
Alaa and his father ousted President Mubarak in one of their
retrials "Getty images" 

It is truly strange times because now we found a news website like Youm 7 attacking Alaa Mubarak reminding him how “ The 25th January revolution” erupted against his father and his own financial corruption!!
Usually, the Egyptian Media-owned Youm 7 considers the #25Jan revolution as a foreign plot to destroy the “Egyptian state” so seeing it recognizing it because of Alaa Mubarak is truly strange.

Already the founders of Youm 7 were NDP members close to Gamal Mubarak whom it used to promote as the upcoming leader of Egypt and since the first call to protest on 25 January 2011 emerged online, the website took the side of the regime. 

Again all this because a single tweet Alaa Mubarak posted it last week: a tweet where he criticized Egypt’s minister of immigration Nabila Makram after her infamous incident in Canada. “She tried to downplay it as expected” 

From what I understood, the son of the former president said that what Makram did and said in Canada was an irresponsible action which is actually true.
On Sunday, Alaa Mubarak deleted the tweet and said that he was raised to respect the “State institutions” and that he rejected to find his name “used in insulting the Egyptian state” as MB-channels-based in Turkey began to highlight his tweet.

Saturday, July 27, 2019

RIP Essebsi : Some men play an important role more than they think or you think

Earlier Saturday late Tunisian President Beji Caid Essebsi was buried in his family cemetery after a respectable funeral for an Arab leader.

Since I was child, I have seen lots Arab presidents and kings’ funerals and one thing I noticed in Essebsi’s funeral that I did not feel or notice in those funerals: People’s true respect.
Vice president of Nahda Party "Islamist" Abdel Fattah El-Mourou walking behind the coffin of late President Essebsi
Vice president of Nahda Party "Islamist" Abdel Fattah El-Mourou walking behind the coffin of
late President Essebsi
The people did not show hypocritic hysterical sadness that we are used to in our part of the world.
That populist culture about the death of that leader/father figure did not exist despite Essebsi’s old age and despite his long political life.

After all the 92-years-old veteran stateman was Tunisia’s first democratically elected president and the man met and dealt with true opposition, not a fake one.
This is the most important role the veteran stateman played since Tunisia’s independence for real in a very critical time.
I do not think that he would have imagined that he would end his life as the President of Democratic Tunisia.

Some Non-Tunisian Islamists are cursing him for enforcing more secular laws when it comes to inheritance and marriage laws as well as their constitution-related articles.
It is up to the Tunisian people to change those laws as well as their constitution at the end of the day at any time.

For me, Essebsi and another man called Rached Ghannouchi made a historical choice to protect Tunisia and its young democracy from the collapse of the Democratic Arab Spring in 2013.
This is how I will remember Beji Caid Essebsi. He was not the most revolutionary nor he represented the youth of Tunisia.

Wednesday, July 24, 2019

Kodak Agfa presents : Aisha Fahmy’s Palace a.k.a Centre of Art

I visited her niece’s palace in Alexandria and its style wowed me with its neoclassical style as well its content as a Museum.

It was time to visit Aisha Fahmy’s Palace in Cairo after its re-inauguration as a state-owned cultural center in May 2017 following at least two decades of renovation.
Aisha Fahmy palace or Al-Gazira Centre of Arts
Aisha Fahmy Palace in Zamalek 
Just like any place in Egypt, it has its stories and legends starring its once-owners The Fahmys.
The Aisha Fahmy palace was not initially built for once-Egypt’s-richest socialite and heiress Aisha Hanem Fahmy or Princess Aisha Fahmy.

The 2600-square-meter-Palace is located the edge of the River Nile directly in the Upscale Zamalek island was originally designed by famed Italian architect Antonio Lasciac for originally Aisha’s father Ali Pasha Fahmy in 1906.

Aisha Fahmy palace or Al-Gazira Centre of Arts
The main entrance to the palace
Lasciac designed many of Egypt’s top royal palaces including Abdeen Palace after it was engulfed in fire in 1891 and Tahra Palace as well as upper-class palaces including Fatma Haidar’s Palace in Alexandria.

Reportedly King Fouad I’s chamberlain, Ali Pasha Fahmy was probably the wealthiest man in the Kingdom of Egypt and Sudan.
Legend says that he was richer than the Royal Family he had got about 5000 agricultural fedans “acres” as part of his property.

Following his death, his enormous wealth was inherited by his offspring, three daughters and only one son who decided in 1923 to renovate the palace following his marriage from a French lady earlier that year.
Originally the couple traveled to Europe for a honeymoon whereas that palace with a special Nile deck was renovated.

Ali Kamel Fahmy
The self-claimed Prince Ali Kamel Fahmy
Getty Images 
That son was the 23-years-old self-claimed Prince Ali Kamel Fahmy and his wife was the infamous femme fatale Marie Margeurite Ailbert.

Despite his young age, Ali Kamel Fahmy managed to make history in the West and East when he was killed by his wife in July 1923 in a crime that inspired novelists for decades.

Before the Daily Mail and the Sun go coco behind the sexual scandals of Gulf Sheikhs, the Ali Fahmy case was the scandalous case of East met West following Egypt’s independence.

It was the original mother of all xenophobic Islamophobic homophobic crime coverage of all British tabloid.
In the UK, it was West against the East: A French lady in her 30s killed her flamboyant rich Egyptian bisexual husband for his cruel abnormal behavior in self-defense.

Back in Egypt, it was sensational affair but it was East against West: The French gold digger who killed the spoiled rich Egyptian young man because he busted her with another man in their Savoy suite in that stormy night.

Saturday, July 20, 2019

British airways and Lufthansa's flights temporary suspension : What is the problem in Cairo ?

I am suffering from current blogging block but this news and its developments are forcing me to go back and ask one question: What kind of information the British airways got that made the airways giant decide to halt to its flights to Cairo for a whole week?

Already it will be a long night for the Egyptian government especially in the foreign ministry, tourism ministry and Civil Aviation ministry in addition to a bunch of National security agencies in the country.

Saturday evening, the British airways surprised everyone and declared that it was suspending its flights from London to Cairo for seven days.

Yes, the British airways “BA” decided to suspend its flights from London to Cairo for seven days starting on Saturday shocking everybody including passengers who knew about the decision while waiting for their flight to Cairo.

In short statement, BA says the flights to the Egyptian Capital Cairo have been suspended for seven days as a “Precaution to allow for further assessment.” 

The statement did not mention what kind of assessment but many point out to the foreign security assessment of Cairo International airport.

Now it is only for the flights from London to Cairo and vice versa for seven days, the suspension does not include cities other than Cairo.

When I checked I found that there are still flights to Sharm El-Sheikh and other Egyptian cities so the problem is in Cairo or rather Cairo International airport. Also, other British airliners have not suspended their flights too.

"Updated on 21/7/2019:"

British airways office in Cairo tells BBC that the flights will continue on Friday. There are no further details on why the suspension decision was taken. Egyptians are speculating everything starting with a Middle East war in the Gulf to the Algerian football fans stuck in Cairo international airport. 

Yet an Egyptian security source spoke with Reuters and said that “that British staff had been checking security at Cairo airport on Wednesday and Thursday”, so what the results of this assessment were not that good I guess !?

Egypt’s Ministry of civil aviation issued a statement after a couple of hours following the British airways’ decision.

Tuesday, July 16, 2019

Seen in Giza : Partial Moon eclipse

July lunar eclipse

Seen in Giza in a very hot night: a moon eclipse taking shape currently. The moon celebrated Apollo 11's 50th anniversary in its own way having a partial eclipse that was witnessed in part of the world.

All respect to the brave men and women around the globe who worked decades and helped in making a man walk on the Moon.

Despite his current political views, all respect to Egyptian American geologist Farouk El-Baz who played a role in the Apollo program especially in the Moon landing.

More photos coming on the way for that night. 

Friday, July 12, 2019

Farewell Youssef Cherif Rizkallah , Egypt’s true Cinema lover

Egypt and Egyptian cinema lost on Friday one of its unsung heroes: Famous film critic and historian Youssef Cherif Rizallah.

Late Youssef Cherif Rizallah
Late Youssef Cherif Rizallah
Rizallah worked many things since his graduation from Cairo University’s Economic and Political sciences in 1966 yet he presented himself as a film critic and he was a great one in Egypt.

The 1942-born Juiset educated started his career in Egyptian State TV news rooms especially he knew French and English fluently yet his true passion was cinema and its history.

Youssef Cherif Rizkallah who descended from a Levant-family was fond of cinema, its history, film review and criticism.

In Mid-1970, he made a Cinema history and glory when he created Cine Club TV show featuring weekly a foreign film or even a rare Egyptian masterpiece like Shady Abdel Salam’s The Mummy on Egypt's State-owned Channel One.

I do not know who was the head of the Egyptian State TV then but it was one of the greatest decisions taken.
It was worth to mention that it was that time during the Sadat Era Egypt adopted the open door policies.

Monday, July 8, 2019

Nubian Day 2019 : A New State plan to compensate Nubian Egyptians

On Saturday 7 July 2019, Egyptian Nubians celebrated the World Nubian Day along other Nubians across the World.

That day comes in a very interesting and critical time as for the first time since adopting the 2014 Constitution, the Egyptian government started its plan to compensate the Egyptian Nubians for the forced displacement they had to surface due to the construction of Aswan’s low and high dam last.

A Nubian Egyptian and his village as depicted by Egypt's famous painter Hussein Bicar during the construction of the High Dam in 1960s
A Nubian Egyptian and his village as depicted by Egypt's famous painter
Hussein Bicar during the construction of the High Dam in 1960s
On Thursday 4 July, a long statement issued by a-government-assigned-committee detailed that compensation plan.
The implementation of that plan has already started on 25 June 2019 and it would continue its work for three weeks only receiving requests of compensations from the eligible citizens.

According to Ahram Online’s report about the plan, there are three categories of citizens eligible for compensation : 
  1. Nubian Egyptians who lost their homes during the construction of the Aswan Low Dam and built new homes without permits on state-owned land in the governorate of Aswan will now be granted legal ownership rights or usufruct right over these lands.
  2. Nubian Egyptians who lost their farmlands during the building of Aswan High Dam could choose between commensurate tillable lands in other areas or cash compensation worth LE 25,000 per acre.
  3. Nubian Egyptians who lost their homes during the building of the High Dam. They will be offered a choice between new houses in or outside the governorate of Aswan or a cash compensation of LE 225,000 per unit.
The government would receive the requests of compensation for three weeks from 25 June 2019 till mid-July. It will determine whether the citizens are eligible to compensation 10 days later following the admission of the request.

The citizens can appeal before another legal committee within 10 days if their requests are rejected.
The first round of compensation will be in Mid September.

Egyptian Media’s Youm 7 published a report on 27 June with the names of some of the citizens eligible to compensation after 4 hours of the launch of that plan.
Youm 7 published the names of 11,716 citizens eligible for compensation.

Wednesday, July 3, 2019

WardaGate : Or How Mo Salah let many Egyptian women down

As he was featured as one of the Time Magazine’s Most Influential People in 2019, Mohamed Salah said in his interview to the Time that “Men need to change the way how they treat women in the Middle East”.

Amr Warda and Mohamed Salah
Salah and Warda earlier "Tass"
“I support the woman more than I did before, because I feel like she deserves more than what they give her now, at the moment.” The 26-years-old world-famous player told the Time.
In that short interview, Salah admitted that “There is a little bit of pressure” on him for “being a role model”.

It is not a “little bit of pressure” but a “whole lot of pressure” actually.

Salah is not just a popular Egyptian footballer who plays in England’s Premier league, Salah is two steps away from becoming the new Egyptian idol in his time with scary popularity. 

He reads a book called “The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F***” and the book is still best selling in Egypt with its versions, the English and the Arabic
He wears a “Never Give up” T-shirt in a Liverpool football match and up till now the T-shirt is another best selling T-shirt in Egypt’s local markets.
He becomes the face of a public anti-drug campaign and the hotlines of the campaign were full of calls from people asking for help to get rid of addiction within days of launching the ad.
That’s why his role in the infamous and current WardaGate is something big and many people including yours truly are angry and disappointed about how he dealt with the matter.


Two weeks ago, Egypt’s National Team winger Amr Warda was announced to be excluded from the team’s camp hours before the game against DR Congo in the 2019 African Cup of Nations.
According to the official of the Egyptian FA, the 25-year-old was excluded for disciplinary reasons without any official further details.

"EFA president Hany Abo Rida decided to exclude Warda from the camp after discussion with the team's technical and managerial staff and the decision was made to keep ensure discipline and concentration in the team" the statement read.

Greece’s PAOK winger, who played as a second-half substitute in the opener, came under fire hours after the Zimbabwe win over accusations of inappropriate behavior on social media.
Four women accused Warda of online sexual harassment over that week.