Tuesday, January 1, 2008
Happy New Year everyone.
A year has past and we’re on the threshold of a newer one.
Personally, 2007, probably like any other year, had its good and bad
things. At the beginning of 2007, precisely on January 15, my beloved
grandmother passed away, a person who loved me like no one else. I
simply don’t understand how she still appears in my dreams almost a
year after her passing away.
On my professional level, I moved to Luxor to work as a sales
manager. In spite of the fact that I am very bored in this city, I do
consider the move to be positive. Living on your own teaches you a lot
and meeting a lot of people has also helped my interpersonal skills.
On the political level, I think 2007 was a good year in Iraq.
Violence has decreased dramatically, thanks to the Sunni tribal leaders
who turned against Al Qaeda. The number of Iraqis and coalition forces
killed has decreased even though 2007 was the most deadly year for US
soldiers (because of the surge that exposed more troops). Last
December, 534 Iraqis were killed, 1,752 were killed during the same
month last year. 22 American soldiers were killed in December 07,
that’s the second least month since the war started. The least month
was February 2004 that witnessed 20 deaths. 112 soldiers were killed in
December 2006. (For more numbers check the excellent
My hope for Iraq is the continuation of this decline in violence and
the witnessing of a political agreement between its 3 major segments.
Lebanon, unfortunately, continues to suffer from the evil protracted
by Syria and its cohorts. My hope is that in 2008 the Lebanese finally
settles on a president, Syria leaves them alone, and Lebanon becomes
the jewel of the Middle East once again.
Now to the US. The prospect of a women president in the White House
excites me but I personally don’t think Clinton is fit for the job. On
November 4th, I would like to see John McCain elected. He is the only
one with the experience to fill this position. I know McCain doesn’t
excite the hardcore Republicans that much, but currently the polls show
that he’s the only one capable of defeating Hillary.
Now to Egypt. 2007 didn’t have much for my country. However, I
believe the most significant thing that happened are all these protests
by the laborers and government employees. I think we’ll see more of
these especially if the government decided to mess up with the
As for my blogging, I am not sure when I’ll resume full time blogging. So please stay tuned.
May you all have a splendid new year.
Tuesday, November 27, 2007
I’m breaking my blogging siesta to report this and ask you to please
e-mail YouTube. YouTube has suspended Wael Abbas’ account for reasons
that no one can understand. Wael Abbas is an anti-torture activist who
posts videos of Egypt’s police brutality. These videos are the only
mean to expose what happens in our police stations, without them the
cry of people who were subjected to torture will go unheard. I really
don’t understand why YouTube took this decision. I am counting on you.
Wael Abbas YouTube account
YouTube contact info
YouTube has restored his account. Thanks to everyone who contacted them.
Sunday, October 28, 2007
for the light blogging. Work is killing me. Will be back soon. Stay tuned.
Tuesday, October 23, 2007
Everybody touch wood!
There has been a sharp decline in Iraqi and US death in
Iraq and this is mostly attributed to the fact that more and more
Sunnis are turning against the terrorists. This what might have
prompted Bin Laden to appear again and give a message to his killers in
“I’ve never been more optimistic than I am right now
with the progress we’ve made in Iraq. The only people who are going to
win this counterinsurgency project are the people of Iraq. We’ve said
that all along. And now they’re coming forward in masses,” Lynch said
in a recent interview at a U.S. base deep in hostile territory south of
Baghdad. Outgoing artillery thundered as he spoke.
Lynch, who commands the 3rd Infantry Division and once served as the
military spokesman in Baghdad, is a tireless cheerleader of the
American effort in Iraq. But the death toll over the past two months
appears to reinforce his optimism. The question, of course: Will it
As of Tuesday, the Pentagon reported 28 U.S. military deaths in
October. That’s an average of about 1.2 deaths a day. The toll on U.S
troops hasn’t been this low since March 2006, when 31 soldiers died —
an average of one death a day.
In September, 65 U.S. soldiers died in Iraq.
Of course terrible civilian casualties such as these can very easily turn this hopefully constant trend.
Friday, October 19, 2007
The Vatican has responded to a letter sent by a group of Muslim religious figures calling for dialogue between the two faiths.
The top Vatican official for Islam has praised a novel
Muslim call for dialogue but said real theological debate with them was
difficult as they saw the Koran as the literal word of God and would
not discuss it in depth.
Cardinal Jean-Louis Tauran, in an interview on Friday with the
French Catholic daily La Croix, also said Christians would have to
discuss curbs on building churches in the Islamic world in the dialogue
advocated by 138 Muslim scholars in the appeal.
Well, I don’t understand why he considers the fact that Muslims
believe the Quran to be the literal word of God a hurdle to dialogue. I
mean why have theological debates in the first place. Everyone is free
to believe in whatever book he/she wants to believe in. No dialogue
Now, what is understandable is the discussion on Christians’ rights
in Muslim countries and especially Egypt. This is fair enough.
The British newspaper World Tribune reported
that according to Western intelligence, Mubarak’s health has undegone a
sharp decline and he passed out last week before a scheduled visit to
Well, I don’t know if these reports are true but what is definitely
true is that Mubarak is getting older and his condition is declining,
if not a result of an illness then surely the result of age.
What really pathetic about this situation is that the entire
country’s future depends upon the survival of a single man. Two months
ago when rumors about his condition spread across the country, it was
said that foreign direct investment took a direct hit. It really sucks
when you don’t know your country’s future and it sucks even more when
it is tied to the existence of a person.
Mr. President, save us and the world the trouble and tell us what you have in mind. I am sick and tired being worried over this.
Tuesday, October 16, 2007
Today King Farouk boarded the royal Mahrousa yacht heading towards
Italy leaving Egypt for good. Today was the final episode of the King
Farouk series. My mom and dad were in tears. When I asked my dad if he
was aware of what was happening when the king left 50 years ago, he
told me that all what he can remember is him crying so hard. “I found
my mother crying her eyes out. I got scared and started to cry.”
Saturday, October 13, 2007
A new letter from imprisoned blogger Abdel Karim is available here.
(h/t The Arabist)