Our close ally, Egypt, continues to lay waste to free speech this month with the absurd sentencing of a Facebook user to three years in jail for simply putting Mickey Mouse ears on a picture of president Abdel Fattah El-Sisi. Amr Nohan was charged with an “attempt to overthrow the regime” for the comical Facebook posting and tried in a military court.
Everyone has a obligation to post this picture as widely as possible in response to the latest attack on free speech. If Sisi was not a bad joke before the sentencing, he is now.
Egypt has long fought to curtail free speech not only inside the country but internationally. For many years, I have been writing about the threat of an international blasphemy standard and the continuing rollback on free speech in the West. For recent columns, click here and here and here.
Much of this writing has focused on the effort of the Obama Administration to reach an accommodation with allies like Egypt to develop a standard for criminalizing anti-religious speech. We have been following the rise of anti-blasphemy laws around the world, including the increase in prosecutions in the West and the support of the Obama Administration for the prosecution of some anti-religious speech under the controversial Brandenburg standard.
The crackdowns in Saudi Arabia and Egypt show again how unwise this effort by the Obama Administration was from the start. Indeed, Egypt appears particularly keen on prosecuting satirists and comedians as a threat to the nation. What is most telling is that such prosecution reflect not just an inherent insecurity but an inherent instability. If the government is threatened by a photoshopped image of Sisi with Micky Mouse ears, the government is truly standing on clay feet.
Besides, no one would confuse Sisi with Mickey Mouse. Mickey Mouse is actually tolerant and leads by example in the Happiness Place on Earth.
54 thoughts on “Egyptian Military Court Sentences Facebook User To Three Years For Joke Image in Unhappiest Place On Earth”
T Hall – do you have a WordPress account of your own? Sometimes mine gets open and enter the wrong material from the other account.
The endless costly wars are not pointless. They make billions and trillions for the Military Industrial Complex. I was there when Ike made that comment warning you of same on his farewell address. You cannot afford a social medical program here but you subsidize all sorts of things in Afghanistan. You are between a rock and a hard place. But you need a weatherman to tell you which way the wind blows.
Actually, Bob Dylan wrote “you DON’T need a weatherman to tell you which way the wind blows”.
Looking at defense spending as a percentage of the U. S. historical budgets gives some idea of which way the wind blows.
T Nash, Hopefully Darren will see the problem. He will fix it if he does.
Red Army…. Song and dance. If problems could be resolved this way.
Those who do not learn history are condemned to repeat it.
The advocacy for free speech is awesome. Obama admin. record is awful.
I don’t understand how this is of such importance, but when our even closer ally Israel engage in a policy similar to Apartheid, nothing is mentioned here. Many crimes committed…. shattering the idea of International law to begin with….
Ellen…the propaganda consists primarily of going back to the “it’s all Bush 43’s fault, without assigning any fault to the current administration’s policies. At some point, it loses its effectiveness.
Nick…..normally, name and email address are retained, but sometimes they are blank and I have to enter them again. When I did enter name and then email address on the line below, it had a red line in the “name” box telling me I needed to enter the email there, as well.
It was the only way I could post a comment…I’ve never seen it do that before. Anyway, no big deal.
It’still doing it.
The damage done by GWB’s incompetance took a long time to recover from and we are not yet fully recovered. davidm, I suggest you put down the propaganda. If you honestly cannot see what has happened to this country under Bush, I really don’t have much else to say to you, it would be a waste of my time.
Ellen wrote: “If you honestly cannot see what has happened to this country under Bush, I really don’t have much else to say to you, it would be a waste of my time.”
I can’t address your false claim intelligently if you don’t narrow the issue to something addressable in this forum. Your refusal to heed my guidance to do so, and choosing instead to rely upon the authority of emotional news propaganda, indicates that you really don’t have anything logical to say. I get it.
T.Hall ….there were a few comments between your posts and my question about the Arab Spring initiative.
Bush 41 was in office for almost 8 months when the 9-11 attacks occurred. Bin Laden and All Qaeda ad been around for years, and by 1998 it was clear that killing Americans was a top priority. The American e!bassy bombings in Africa, Bin Laden’s fatwa that good Muslims should kill Americans, etc. made him an obvious threat to the U.S.
He was not effectively dealt with by either Clinton or Bush 43.
Regarding Trump, even a stopped clock is right twice a day.
David, These folks are making the same assertions regarding 9/11 as their guy, Trump.
Oops, T Nash, I’m not busting balls. If you email JT I’m sure he’ll delete your email address.
“I used the article because it covered all the points beautifully.”
It does indeed. Thanks.
Only fools try to reinvent the wheel. (Thanks for the link, Ellen.)
And, yes, there was ample warning about what was to transpire, as T. Hall has accurately noted.
Intelligent people read. You do too I would imagine. You are not a government insider and the information you base your statements on were undoubtedly based on similar reading material, but probably with a conservative slant. I used the article because it covered all the points beautifully.
Ellen, I am starting to wonder if you know the meaning of the word incompetence.
incompetence: “inability to do something successfully; ineptitude”
inept: “having or showing no skill; clumsy”
Of the so-called 7 worst moments for President Bush, which one is the one that in your mind shows the greatest case for proving that President Bush was incompetent?
And how are we paying for this incompetence over the last decade? If President Obama could not fix it, then would he not be considered incompetent as well?
BDS has reached pandemic stage.
Maybe that’s what he meant by “Mission accomplished!”
Unless you think he intended for all that to happen in order to bring about the police state and roll back freedom in this country and enrich the oligarchs.
He sat on his hands, kept silent, as the impending economic collapse approached
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