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The Drama of the "lslamists"

Others | 16 August 2010
I have often tried to imagine a scenario in which what I call the 'Islamists' will have achieved all their objectives. The scenario assumes that Osama bin Laden or someone like him get their way and proceed to impose their vision of what the Muslim world should be on the rest of us... More

When the law is the obstacle

Youseef Sidhom | 15 August 2010
A major problem in Egypt is that the average Egyptian has an unfailing sense that official authorities have no better business but to lie in wait for any successful project or effort that the average Egyptian has achieved, ready to pounce and stamp it out at the first viable opportunity. And it takes no genius to guess .. More

How Pakistani Intelligence Fooled the U.S.

Others | 15 August 2010
Back in November 2001, just a week after Kabul fell to the U.S.-led invasion forces in Afghanistan and just as the city of Kunduz began to capitulate, the air filled with the steady drone of C-130 transport aircraft landing at the dusty airstrip... More

For the sixth year in a row

Youseef Sidhom | 8 August 2010
This is the sixth year in a row that I write, following the conclusion of the annual parliamentary round, to comment on the failure of the Parliament to pass the unified law for places of worship. The lack of such a law, as any casual observer can tell, has been behind countless incidents of violence against Copts—incidents we could very well have escaped and for which our government should be held accountable.. More

The Tragedy of Egypt's Copts ...

Others | 8 August 2010
(Continuing the analytical remarks on the feelings of unease that certain issues engender among the Copts): Second, with regard to the widespread feeling among Copts that their representation in public life has shrunk considerably over the last few decades, this is borne out by official statistics. However, this .. More

Egypt on the Brink

Others | 1 August 2010
In Praise of Justice ustice is a set of human values on which there is consensus, and which is reflected in a body of law that treats all people as equals. This concept no longer exists in Egypt. There is not a single rule in Egypt which really applies to all, from traffic offenses to bank loans to the sale of state land and property and public-sector companies. Who you are, who your father is, how wealthy you are and how close you are to .. More

In Minya: A pledge not honoured

Youseef Sidhom | 1 August 2010
Over a series of four editorials printed last October, I tackled the practices exercised by Minya local authorities against the Copts in the governorate. A file I had received from the bishopric of Maghagha and Adawa in Minya was packed full of details that could be described as collective punishment of the .. More

Majority of Brits want burkas banned

Others | 26 July 2010
Two-thirds of British people would support a ban on Muslim women wearing face-covering veils in public, similar to the one approved by French lawmakers this week, a poll has found... More

A woman’s inheritance

Youseef Sidhom | 25 July 2010
Two weeks ago I wrote about the injustice commonly inflicted upon Egyptian women where inheritance is concerned. Even though the law allots a woman half the share her brother inherits, she more often than not ends up getting nothing at all of her due inheritance, especially when it involves land. The .. More

The shiny white taxi

Youseef Sidhom | 18 July 2010
It is now almost a year since Cairenes have found at their service taxis that are modern, clean, and outfitted with metres that determine a fair fare for any given trip. They replaced—or are in the process of phasing out—the old squeaking, dilapidated, life threatening, infamous black-and-white taxis. It was at one point circulated that these black-and-white taxis were, four years ago, among the major factors which contributed to Egypt losing to South Africa the opportunity to host the 2010 Mondiale... More

Does Obama care about religious freedom?

Others | 18 July 2010
Does President Obama care about religious freedom? It's disconcerting that this question needs to be asked of a U.S. president, but prominent observers are sounding the alarm... More

Is the testimony in the court based on the religious identity?

Dr. Naguib Gibraeel | 13 July 2010
At a time when we are all searching the real citizenship of and the non-discriminative trends among citizens on the basis of the race, sex, gender, religion or language, and we want the reunification of all Egyptians, under one flag, a year passed or more on the fatal clumsy situation that happened in Shoubra el-Kheima and Heliopolis court house When the family court judge denied the hearing of the testimony of the Christian citizen, who attended with his Muslim friend to decide and to state only the fact of his friend father's death... More

Eating up a woman’s inheritance

Youseef Sidhom | 11 July 2010
Among the ugliest problems faced by Egyptian women and long placed on the hold is that of inheritance. No matter how modernised or aware our community has become, it still maintains archaic notions which allot females a trifle of the inheritance allotted to males—or none at all. Worse, the topic is .. More

Candor in Describing the Ideology Behind Terror

Others | 11 July 2010
The Fort Hood shooter, the Christmas Day bomber, the Times Square attacker. On May 13, the following exchange occurred at a hearing of the House Judiciary Committee: Rep. Lamar Smith (R-Tex.): Do you feel that these individuals might have been incited to take the actions that they did because .. More

No questions allowed

Youseef Sidhom | 4 July 2010
An official complaint presented to the Minister of Higher Education on 25 May 2010 accused Assiut University’s Philosophy Department of being a stronghold of fundamentalist, extremist thought, and of .. More

Saudi Arabia, Israel Share Common Enemy in Iran?

Others | 4 July 2010
A recent headline in Britain's Sunday Times must have sent blood pressure readings soaring on both sides of the gulf known on one side as the Persian Gulf and on the other as the Arabian Gulf: "Saudi .. More

Fanatics in the making

Youseef Sidhom | 27 June 2010
Assiut University is among the oldest in Egypt. In a move to align itself with progressive concepts, the university has established a centre for research and studies on human rights. The centre, which is directly under the charge of the university president, aims at promoting academic research in the field of .. More

Copts battle everyone’s fight

Others | 26 June 2010
A new grassroots movement among the Coptic Diaspora was established in Washington this past weekend. Almost 100 Coptic Christian community organizers from around the globe gathered to discuss religious freedom in the Middle East and future lobbying efforts for the rights of Egypt’s Coptic people... More

A history of religious discrimination

Youseef Sidhom | 21 June 2010
The year 2006 saw the launching of the website of Assiut University. It was a welcome addition to the cyberworld by one of Egypt’s top tier universities, especially since the site provided considerable information. Included were statistics about the number of students enrolled but—amazingly—they were .. More

Critical Questions Remain for ElBaradei

Others | 21 June 2010
Since his return to Egypt and dramatic entry into the Egyptian political spotlight, Mohamed ElBaradei has attracted support from various political blocs, as well as from the Egyptian people, who tout the former head of the International Atomic Energy Agency as a hero. However, the enthusiasm with which many Egyptians, especially the young and marginalized, have joined his campaign is based largely on frustration and a desire for social and political change, rather than actual support for ElBaradei himself... More

Open season on the Church

Youseef Sidhom | 13 June 2010
In the wake of the recent court ruling obliging the Coptic Church to issue remarriage permits for divorced couples—the Church currently issues such permits to the wronged party alone; the other party is given a permit only conditionally—and the church’s refusal to abide by the ruling, it was open season on the .. More