Everyone loves the Egyptian President Abdel Fatah el-Sisi, including the West who sees him as a new friend as my people see him as a hero. But, I have continued asking myself for over a year now whether the rules of logic and common sense dictate, in rare cases, that you can be the only one who is right while everyone else is wrong. Since I am not perfect I have decided to explain my thoughts about the man for now and stop writing about him until he proves me right or proves me wrong and fulfill his promises. I am no coward but I am going to give myself time to focus on my activism in fixing the broken bridges between Israel and the Arabs.
 
If you agree or disagree with the controversial movie '50 Shades of Grey' In my opinion it is a very unique movie that has a very important message showing how a powerful and a rich man can shade himself  to be - a true gentleman and very kind in his attempts to convince an innocent girl that sadism is another way of love that society doesn’t understand or appreciate. This of course confused the girl`s innocence in the beginning to follow his lead. However, that innocent girl saw the light at the end of the movie and didn’t accept this sadistic approach that came with promises filled with nothing but love and a rich life.

When I watched this movie I realized that my Egypt is going through the exact same story.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.


The comedian Bill Burr once said:
“I have this weird sort of Gemini thing where I can really be empathetic and a loving person. But if you piss me off, I can be one of the meanest, most sadistic people.”
This is how Sisi operates my Egypt, with more than 50 shades of one character, which confuses me.

The shad of unity

The to be extremely fair and honest, Sisi`s decisive actions towards ISIL`s beheading of 21 Egyptian Christians lead to the launching of an airstrike hours after ISIL released a video of the gruesome act. And on the next day he went to the Copts' funeral at a cathedral. I believe that the Christians of my Egypt don’t feel as much a minority anymore because of this action. Now they feel they are more equal, which of course makes me happy because my Egypt needs to be united in these critical times where chaos and terrorism are surrounding us from everywhere.

But last year's so-called elections which came with the result of a 96% victory for Sisi was nothing but an insult to my people`s intelligence. This shady result was a way to convince the world that the whole Egyptian population voted for the man as if he were the new savior. It's the real actions of a leader that makes him revered and loved, not shady ballot tactics.

The shade of love

While Sisi comes off as very kind and sweet in his speeches to the good people of my Egypt, showing them respect and acting like he cares about them with promises that my Egypt will become super power, we need is to be patient for a few years. Sadly the people of my Egypt believe these promises exactly like that innocent girl in the movie when she fell for Mr. Grey at first.

The shade of the big promise of a second Suez Canal

This promise claims to take my Egypt to the next level of prosperity, which made the Egyptians rush into the banks buying the new issued bonds with interests. In less than 10 days the government collected more than seven billion dollars for a project that will take at least five years to be done and then will start to generate profit. So my question is how and from where will Sisi be able to keep paying a three months interest for five years straight for a project that will start generating its revenues after five years? Honestly I don’t know with all the debts we have and donations we get how Sisi will be able to keep his promise to pay these interests regularly every three months for five years until the project is done. For years and years Egyptians were begging the ex-regimes to expand and build a bigger canal but as I wonder how and from where the regime is going to pay these interests?

The shade of my Egypt`s economic forum


Last March, the World Economic Forum in Sharm el-Sheikh resulted in huge foreign investments that will be used to build a new capital for Egypt away from the overcrowded Cairo, along with new power stations that will light up my Egypt day and night, and with factories that will create countless jobs. This gave me big hopes too, but a few days after the forum - which was aimed to attract foreign investments by assuring that my Egypt is safe for foreign investments  - ended the government announced that by May 15 any tourist willing to visit my Egypt needs a visa first to enter. So how come a country like my Egypt is struggling with its economy while tourism is one of the most essential resources we have! So instead in working on reviving the tourism industry that has direct effect on four million jobs, Sisi`s government has made it harder for tourists to come visit the new Egypt. Of course after realizing how reckless this decision was, the government reversed the decision as if they never issued it with the excuse is that the government is now working on a new electronic visa system!

The shade of Sinai

Another shade that makes Sinai a new version of Afghanistan is the way how the military is handling the situation there by imposing a six-months curfew on the people there, which is nothing compared to the evacuation of more than 1,200 families from the borders to create a massive buffer zone with Gaza in order to eliminate smuggling tunnels. I do support the buffer zone plan because as I wrote in a previous article these tunnels are a serious danger to my Egypt`s national security, but evacuating these poor families from their homes and farms with only a 48-HOUR notice was a very sadistic decision. Italso makes me wonder about the constant closing of the borders with Gaza and not even creating a market on the borders so they can buy all the medical and food supplies they desperately need. The way Sisi is handling Sinai does nothing but spur hatred and anger among the people there towards its military and police. That`s why I am not surprised about the escalating level of violence in Sinai that is only targeting the military and police checkpoints by Hamas who is hiding among some of the people in Sinai.

The shade of security

This is very hard for me to agree or disagree with because to be honest it created a secured and stable country but the way it was handled was very dictatorial and without mercy.

Another shade of Sisi's relates to his security forces and courts which launched a campaign to hunt down, arrest, publicly humiliate and imprison atheists and homosexuals. Bear in mind there are no laws in Egypt criminalizing atheism or homosexuality and Sisi's moral policemen and judges are totally improvising crimes like “disturbing the social norms.” How can a regime which does not believe nor respect the rule of law create a state that respects law?

The crackdown on homosexuals exclusively pertains to Egyptians. A court verdict issued on April 14 ruled for the immediate deportation of any foreigner who is gay or a lesbian, which again affects the tourism industry that we are desperate to regain.

Another shade that I am quoting from my fellow Egyptian activist Hussein Aboubakr:
“While it is true Sisi is repressing Islamists and claims to fight Isil, it is crucial to mention that political oppression is at its peak even for liberal secularists. Sisi did shutdown the most influential anti-Islamist political satire TV show in the Arab world Al Bernameg of the only honest media man in my Egypt Dr. Bassem Youssef, something the Brotherhood itself couldn’t dare to do when they were in power. The amount of political detainees and prisoners, deaths resulted from torture and demonstrators killed rose dramatically than that of Mubarak pre-revolution Egypt. Mass arrests and impunity for abuse by security forces are two main features of Sisi’s Egypt.”
Here are some quotes from the Human Rights Watch 2015 report:
“More than 41,000 people were arrested or faced criminal charges between July 2013 and May 2014… In 2014 a criminal court judge handed down the death penalty to more than 1,200 people. Egypt’s 2014 constitution permits military trials for civilians, and on October 27, 2014, al-Sisi issued a decree expanding military court jurisdiction to cover crimes that occur on any public, state-owned, or “vital” property. At least 90 people died in local police stations and security directorates in the governorates of Cairo and Giza alone in 2014. That number represented a 38% increase from the year before. Authorities detained dozens of people for such offenses as possessing flyers with anti-military slogans. Authorities arrested more than 95 lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people between July 2013 and December 2014. On December 7, police raided a Cairo bathhouse and arrested at least 25 men whom they accused of “practicing debauchery.”
Keep in mind that this report covers only a 10 months period from July 2013 to May 2014 so I won’t be surprised that these very sad numbers are doubled by now.

With this abusive lawless force it is obvious why he can’t make the parliamentary elections that he promised when he came to power because after eliminating the opposition from all sides with a very efficient propaganda machine by his side then who would run or win these elections except only his supporters, which would make the new parliament looks like a ship of pirates that says nothing but ay ay Captain?

As I mentioned in my previous article "National Security," Sisi doesn’t believe in liberties, democracy or any kind of freedoms of expression. No one in my Egypt dares to criticize his performance or character because they made a God out of him.

The worst shade of them all is the paranoia and the polarization that his propaganda machine did to my people, which I wrote about with extensive details in my article “The Brainwashing Machine.” People here report one another over anything no matter how silly or stupid it may be, exactly like the Nazi and Soviet eras.

But at the end of this movie, the innocent kind girl realized that with all these shades of love and power she can’t be a subject to a sadistic man who would torture her out of LOVE.

My people will take that girl`s lead but they need time to finally see the truth about these different Shades of Sisi. Who knows maybe all these different shades are for the greater good of my beloved Egypt.

For the first time being, I pray to Allah to keep my Egypt safe and prove me wrong about Sisi.


Relevant to your professional network? Please share on Linkedin
Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this blog article are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the official position or viewpoint of The Jerusalem Post. Blog authors are NOT employees, freelance or salaried, of The Jerusalem Post.

Think others should know about this? Please share