‏إظهار الرسائل ذات التسميات Politics. إظهار كافة الرسائل
‏إظهار الرسائل ذات التسميات Politics. إظهار كافة الرسائل


Egyptian expat acts as ‘political pundit’ from his New York sandwich shop

Hold the Egg Sandwich: Egyptian TV Is Calling

Egyptian expat in sandwich  acts as ‘political pundit’ from his  New York 
 sandwich shop
;) Form bathroom
and he get 5000$ every time he show in TV

Hatem El-Gamasy owns the Lotus Deli in Ridgewood, Queens, where he appears on Egyptian television news programs from a converted back-room studio.CreditMark Abramson for The New York Times

Every other day or so, Hatem El-Gamasy connects to a news audience nearly halfway around the world, delivering hot takes on American politics, live from New York, but on Egyptian television.

When the broadcast ends, he slips out his earpieces, opens the door of his makeshift studio and returns to his day job.
“You want ketchup on that?” he said to a customer on a recent morning. “Extra ketchup as usual?”
Mr. El-Gamasy owns the Lotus Deli in Ridgewood, Queens, a place known for its sandwiches, extensive craft beer selection, and its gracious, friendly owner. But few of his customers — and likely, none of his viewers in Egypt — know that the man making egg sandwiches and small talk behind the counter is the same one who appears on popular Egyptian television news programs, holding forth on subjects from immigration policy to North Korea.

From left: Mr. El-Gamasy showing a YouTube video of one of his on-air appearances; his studio, where a suit jacket hangs, is a converted back room; a screenshot of a four-panel interview on CBC Extra News.CreditMark Abramson for The New York Times, eXtra news
He had written op-ed pieces over the years, mostly as a hobby. But the article predicting Mr. Trump’s victory caught the attention of someone at the Egyptian state broadcaster, Nile TV, who was looking to interview an Egyptian-American about the election.
The interview went well; Mr. El-Gamasy’s phone began ringing with more requests, each one expanding his journalistic reputation in a country that has been known to detain reporters.
“He’s very polished and he knows about political life and political news in America,” Muhammad El-Muhammady, a producer for ONtvLIVE, said in an interview from his office in Cairo. “He can talk about a variety of political topics,” he said, from the president’s posts on Twitter to hurricanes, and he is deeply prepared for every broadcast.
“If I said I need something specific, he will say, ‘No, wait, I have to verify this,’” Mr. El-Muhammady added. “If he doesn’t know, he says so.”
Continue reading the main story

Mr. El-Gamasy’s bodega has earned a reputation for its sandwiches, extensive craft beer selection, friendly service and stimulating conversations. CreditMark Abramson for The New York Times
A former English teacher from the Monufia province in Northern Egypt, Mr. El-Gamasy moved to Brooklyn in 1999 to study teaching English as a second language at St. John’s University. To support himself, he took a job at a deli counter in an Associated Supermarket in Lower Manhattan.
He was working there in 2003 when a woman, a psychotherapist from Chicago who was to return home that month, walked in and asked for a sandwich.
“Extra vegetables,” he recalled. They went for pizza next door. “I knew if I was going to have one more pizza with her, we would be married,” he said.
They had more pizza: Lynette Green and Mr. El-Gamasy have been married for 13 years. They have two children, Faizah, 12, and Omar, 8.

Mr. El-Gamasy, who also writes op-ed pieces for Egyptian news organizations, often researches his subject matter from a table in the back of his bodega. CreditMark Abramson for The New York Times

He bought the deli in Queens about four years ago, and amid the bricks of cheese and cold cuts, Mr. El-Gamasy found something of a vantage point into the American psyche.
During the run-up to the presidential election, his back-and-forth with Ridgewood’s newest arrivals — “my hipsters,” he said — helped hone his understanding of millennial disenchantment with politics, their rancor around the Democratic Party’s treatment of Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont, and their disgust that their middle-class parents outside of New York planned to vote for Trump.
“Most of the customers, they vent to the bodega owner,” he said. “And actually, I listen.”

On a recent morning, a pair of customers stood beside a shelf of ramen packets for an hour, heatedly discussing politics. One customer, Kelvin Gerold, paid for his coffee, and headed out, leaving behind a conversation about entrenched misogyny, only to return a few minutes later to add another thought for Mr. El-Gamasy, known to his customers as Timmy.
“I don’t think he is undermined by the fact that he makes sandwiches,” said Mr. Gerold, 41, a computer network engineer. “Think of all the people you meet in your corner store; you meet people from every single walk of life and every single political opinion, range and spectrum.”
Continue reading the main story

“Most of the customers, they vent to the bodega owner,” Mr. El-Gamasy said. “And actually, I listen.”CreditMark Abramson for The New York Times
Plus, he said, “The bacon, egg and cheese is ridiculous.”
On Thursday morning, Mr. El-Gamasy’s phone rang. A producer from ONtvLIVE, which positions itself as a politically independent Egyptian television network, wanted to know if Mr. El-Gamasy was available. The quick transformation into Clark Kent began: Mr. El-Gamasy removed the clear plastic deli gloves, the flat cap he uses to keep his hair back over the griddle, and the apron that protects his dress shirts from fryer splatter. On went his suit jacket and earpieces; he ran past the house bodega cat, curled on a garbage bag, and into his back-room studio.
“Sometimes I’ll be busy with an order with my customer, then I will have to jump. It’s — ‘One. Two. You’re live.’” he said, imitating the booming voice of a newscaster. “It’s, ‘Mr. Gamasy, are we going to war in North Korea?’” (The shoot that day was ultimately postponed.)
Mr. El-Gamasy decorated the walls of the converted room with maps of the United States, lending an academic-like backdrop to his televised appearances.
When news producers have asked what he does for a living, Mr. El-Gamasy has been evasive. (Last week, when a television network sent a camera crew to interview him on the anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks, he met them at the bodega, but did not mention it was his. “I asked them if they wanted to stop for a sandwich,” he said. “I said, ‘I know the guy.’”)
Mr. El-Muhammady, the news producer from Egypt, said he did not know that Mr. El-Gamasy owned a bodega, and did not care. “The quality of the work is more important than the appearance of the person or the company,” he said.
As for the back-room bodega studio, he added, “Good for him that he prepared something that looks nice.”

Next week, Mr. El-Gamasy said he will report from the United Nations General Assembly for several stations in Egypt. He sees his role as part translator of the American people to his homeland, and part good-will ambassador for a country where he feels more at home than where he was born. “With Mr. Trump as president, I feel compelled to explain America more to the Middle East,” he said.
“Over here, the sky is the limit,” Mr. El-Gamasy said. “And I’m living proof of it.”


Cairo airport website hacked as Egyptians mark massacre

The website of Cairo's airport has been hacked as Egyptians marked the second anniversary of the mass killing of demonstrators in the capital.

The incident, where security forces shot dead almost 700 supporters of ousted president Mohamed Morsi as they dispersed a protest camp in Cairo's Rabaa al-Adawiya Square, has remained a rallying point for the country's Muslim Brotherhood opposition.

"The revolution continues, and the earth does not drink blood," said the page, which bore the sign used by the protesters in Cairo's Rabaa al-Adawiya Square.
By Friday afternoon, the homepage of the airport website was blocked entirely.

The apparent hacking came as police bolstered their presence in the capital in anticipation of protests after Friday's Muslim prayers.
Two years on from the incident, no police officers have faced trial over the killings in Cairo's Rabaa al-Adawiya Square, but leaders and members of Morsi's Muslim Brotherhood have.
About 10 police were killed during the dispersal, after coming under fire from several gunmen in the sprawling camp on a crossroads in eastern Cairo when they moved to break it up.
But rights groups have said that security forces used disproportionate force, killing many unarmed protesters in what Human Rights Watch said "probably amounted to crimes against humanity."
The New York-based group on Friday called on the United Nations Human Rights Council to launch an inquiry into the killings.
"Washington and Europe have gone back to business with a government that celebrates rather than investigates what may have been the worst single-day killing of protesters in modern history," deputy Middle East director Joe Stork said.
In Egypt, however, the government has always defended the dispersal of the protesters, insisting that the Muslim Brotherhood members were armed "terrorists".
Morsi, the country's first democratically elected leader, ruled for only a year before mass protests prompted the military to overthrow and detain him. He has since been sentenced to death.
President Sisi, the former leader of the army, had pledged to eradicate Morsi's Muslim Brotherhood.
The group has been blacklisted and most of its leaders arrested, severely restricting its ability to mobilise followers in protests.



 Al Jazeera and agencies
Agence France-Presse reported.


Yemenis Protest Against Saudi Aggression.

Yemenis Protest Against Saudi Aggression..

In pics #YemenCrisis #Sanaa Protest against foreign invasion and occupation of #Yemen


Yemenis Protest Against Saudi Aggression. Location: Sanaa - YemenDate: 11 August 2015Source:...
Posted by Stop War on Yemen on Wednesday, 12 August 2015


#Nelson_Mandela and His legacy for #Yemen

Nelson Mandela was buried today at his family home in Qunu, South Africa. Over the last few days I have been reflecting on Mandela’s life, his achievements, and how – through the art of forgiveness, reconciliation and the power of dialogue – Mandela brought about visionary and historic change in South Africa. With the change happening all around us in Yemen, I wondered what we could learn from Mandela.
Last Tuesday, more than a hundred current and former heads of state or government attended Mandela’s memorial service to commemorate his life and times. The US’s President Obama and Cuba’s Raul Castro shook hands, showing that Mandela could help reconciliation from beyond the grave. As those who spoke at the service made clear, Mandela was an inspirational, visionary leader who became a legend in his own lifetime, and never forgot the values that were important to him.
Mandela’s dream was to see black and white South Africans living together as equals. So as part of the African National Congress Party, Mandela organised a resistance movement against the apartheid government. He was jailed for life in 1964 for his activities. The story could have ended there, but it didn’t.
Whilst in prison, Mandela overcame his own feelings of rage and bitterness towards the government for all the abuses and discrimination black South Africans had suffered under apartheid. But perhaps more importantly, Mandela learnt how to forgive, how to reconcile, and recognised the importance of looking forward, not back.
The lessons of forgiveness, reconciliation, looking forward, unity over a common dream, and the power of dialogue ring very true for Yemen today. They are the very issues that Yemen is grappling with in its transition.
As we saw in 2011, the glue that brought together the revolutionary youth, women and other proud Yemenis was their common dream to create a democratic, accountable and free society. One where there is a basic relationship between a government that listens to the needs of its people (water, security, electricity, health, education), and a people that mobilises civil society and the ballot box to put in power a government that will deliver those needs.
South Africa today still faces many challenges. Even with such a unique leader, Mandela could not change the country overnight – indeed, that was not his role. He was clear that each and every person had a responsibility to do their part. In his own words: “A fundamental concern for others in our individual and community lives would go a long way in making the world the better place we so passionately dreamt of.”
I sense fear in some Yemenis that whatever good they try and do, it will not make a difference. That the price of trying against entrenched interests will be too high. Mandela had some advice for you: “I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.”
And in spite of the difficulty of the task, he advised: “it always seems impossible until it’s done.” Sometimes, a successful transition in Yemen seems impossible, but one day, with the efforts of all Yemenis, it will be done.

By jane marriott Ambassador of Great England in Yemen


#RIP Ahmed Fouad Negm (1929-2013)

The Fagomi has passed away :(

Renowned Egyptian Poet Ahmed Fouad Negm has passed away earlier this morning after long controversial life full of revolutionary poems. His funeral will start soon in Cairo at Al Hussein Mosque. I do not know 
what to say now except I represent my deepest condolences to his family especially his daughter Nawara Negm.

Through his life Negm refused to be the regime's poet insisting to be the voice of the poor and the oppressed and I think this is why he will be remembered more than any poet in our time.
Let's respect death for God sake.
Ahmed Fouad Negm has gone but his poems and songs remain as the words of the revolutionaries not only in Egypt but across the world. Here is a collection of his poems translated to English. 
I will be storifying his funeral


by http://storify.com/zeinobia

--> -->

                                   أحمد فؤاد نجم 

                     الأعمال الشعرية الكاملة

الكتاب يحمل جميع قصائد الشاعر الكبير أحمد فؤاد نجم
من الطبيعى ان تتعرف على تاريخ مصر عن طريق مؤرخ او كاتب ولكن من المميز ان تتعرف على تاريخ مصر عن طريق شاعر كبير مثل أحمد فؤاد نجم 
القصائد تحكى قصه شعب على مر النصف الاخير من القرن الماضى مرورا بثورة يوليو والنكسة والانتصار ، ستحزن كثيرا فى بعض القصائد الى ان تكاد تبكى وستفرح كثيراً فى بعض القصائد الى ان تكاد تطير من الفرح وهذا احساس طبيعى حينما تقرأ لـ أحمد فؤاد نجم


#Russia, #Egypt begin ‘new era’ in military relations

Russia, Egypt begin ‘new era’ in military relations

Egypt wants to develop its ties with Russia, bringing the two nations to the level of friendship they enjoyed during the Soviet era. However, Egypt is not looking to replace the US as its key ally, according to the country’s foreign minister.
We want to give a new impetus to our relations and return them to the same high level that used to exist with the Soviet Union,” Egyptian Foreign Minister Nabil Fahmy said following a meeting with his Russian counterpart, Sergey Lavrov, in Cairo on Thursday.
We believe that Russia plays an important role on the international arena. We want our relations to develop for the benefit of both states,” Fahmy added.
However, the Egyptian top diplomat said that Russia was not meant to be “a substitute” for any other country. 
Cairo wants to intensify relations. But they won't be alternative to anyone,” the Egyptian FM said. He sought to refute speculation that Cairo is headed toward a major shift in its foreign policy.
Washington has remained a close ally with the country for three decades, but tensions between the two nations have mounted since the military ouster of President Mohamed Morsi in July.
Sergey Lavrov refrained from making any judgments on the political developments in Egypt, saying that Moscow is against “any foreign interference into internal affairs.”

We respect Egypt’s sovereignty and the right of the Egyptians to decide on their fate,” he said during a joint press conference.  “We expect that current efforts, including the development of a new constitution and a referendum on this basic law to make further progress and achieve the goals set by Egypt.
Lavrov and Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu are heading the Russian delegation in the highest level visit to Egypt in years. For the first time in the history of relations between the two states, talks are being held in the ‘2+2’ format - two top diplomats and two military chiefs.
Egypt’s interim president Adly Mansour (C) defense minister Abdlefatah al-Sissi (2ndR) meet with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov (2-L), and Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu (L) on November 14, 2013 at the presidential palace in Cairo. (AFP Photo/Khaled Desouki)
Egypt’s interim president Adly Mansour (C) defense minister Abdlefatah al-Sissi (2ndR) meet with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov (2-L), and Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu (L) on November 14, 2013 at the presidential palace in Cairo. (AFP Photo/Khaled Desouki)

Russia, Egypt begin ‘new era’ in military relations

Shoigu and his Egyptian counterpart, General Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, discussed military collaboration during the talks.
Strong and democratic Egypt will be an important factor to maintain peace in the Middle East. We hope that the situation will stabilize soon and that all problems will be solved by peaceful means,” the Russian defense minister said.
The Egyptian army chief told media that the talks prove the two countries “will continue strategic relationship, which is opening a new stage in constructive and fruitful military cooperation.” 
We have common goals for ensuring fair and lasting peace in the Middle East. Our region is a heart of peace and guarantor of security and calm,” Sisi said.
The two countries have agreed to hold joint military drills on countering terrorism and piracy, Shoigu said on Thursday.
We also agreed to step up exchange of delegations and expand cooperation between the Navies and Air Forces,” the Russian minister said.
Shoigu’s presence at the talks sparked rumors in the media of a possible major arms deal between the two nations. According to media reports, Cairo was lobbying for around US$2 billion worth of Russian arms after the US discontinued support to Egypt’s military-backed rulers. So far, there has been no official confirmation that any such deal was discussed at the talks. 
Egyptian Foreign Minister Fahmy told RT Arabic that the possibility of his country buying Russian weapons “is being considered in principle.
Egypt-Russian relations in the military-technical area have been going on for over 30 years...Since 1970 ties and even earlier, Egypt has been purchasing weapons from Russia and also modernizing them. So, this topic is not new. An issue of buying new kinds of Russian military hardware should be thoroughly examined,” he said. 
Cairo was the USSR’s key Arab ally for about two decades, between the 1950s and 1970s, when the Soviet Union provided then Egyptian leader Gamal Abdel Nasser with technical and military aid, particularly during the Arab-Israeli conflict. The Soviet Union also helped Egypt construct the Aswan High Dam along the Nile.

Relations between the two nations weakened in the 1970s, when Egypt’s foreign policy took a U-turn under President Anwar Sadat, who brought the nation closer to the US. Washington has been contributing about $1.5 billion a year in military aid to Egypt for decades.

But following the July ouster of Morsi and subsequent crackdown on his supporters, Washingtonwithheld deliveries of military hardware and $260 million in cash aid to Egypt. The US underlined, however, that it was not severing ties with its long-standing ally.  Secretary of State John Kerry said in October that the US would consider resuming some of the aid "on a basis of performance" following the interim government's ‘roadmap’ which promises to lead to fair elections, Reuters reported.

The Egyptian army-backed government slammed the “strange” decision which was made “at such a vital time during which Egypt is facing a war against terrorism.” 

منظومات صواريخ "تور-إم 1"

MIG 29 #FIthe


Watching #Cairo from #Sanaa #Yemen #Egypt

SANAA — The protests in Egypt have not only ignited unrest in Cairo, they've unleashed a flurry of debate across the rest of the region. It's not just about where things are heading in Egypt, the most populous country in the Arab world, or what the current uncertainty means about the country's post-Mubarak transition. It's about their resonance in the whole of the Arabic-speaking world and the potential spillover effects. From Sanaa, all that's truly clear at the moment is that Yemenis are watching a nearly absurd amount of Egypt coverage on TV..

Local Muslim Brothers and sympathizers watch Al Jazeera with trepidation. Politicians from former president Ali Abdullah Saleh's General People's Congress (GPC) party watch Saudi-owned Al-Arabiya with a newly awakened revolutionary fervor. Leftists watch al-Mayadeen, the year-old Beirut-based "alternative" to Gulf-funded channels, wondering aloud whether the tide may have shifted against political Islam.
It can feel at times like they are looking at Egypt for cues for where things in Yemen could be heading; over the course of the past two and a half years, events in Cairo have tended to feel a few steps ahead of those Sanaa.
--> While large-scale protests aimed at the Yemeni dictator's ouster began almost immediately after Mubarak's toppling, Saleh didn't formally cede power until the following February. Demonstrators stayed in the streets in months-long protest encampments across the country, but the voices of Yemen's revolutionary youth were soon eclipsed. The military split between supporting the government and the protestors, and Sanaa erupted into urban warfare on two separate occasions. Al Qaeda-linked militants seized control of a series of towns in the south, and, all the while, opposition politicians engaged in a series of on-again, off-again negotiations with Saleh and his allies. In November 2011, the two sides finally reached an agreement, inking the so-called Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) Initiative, an internationally backed power transfer deal granting Saleh immunity in exchange for his ouster. The deal set Yemen on a two-year long "transitional period" presided over by longtime Vice President Abdu Rabbu Mansour Hadi and formed a compromise government split between the GPC and the opposition. Presidential and parliamentary elections are tentatively slated for early 2014.

There's plenty of heady talk about the building of a "new Yemen," but in Sanaa it often feels as if things are paused. Some things have moved forward elsewhere in the country: Once the target of a series of devastating wars, the Houthi movement has carved out a virtual state-within-a-state in their base in the far north, while rising secessionist sentiment has made it seem almost as if the only thing preventing the south from regaining its independence is a series of brittle divisions among the separatist leadership. The ongoing Conference of National Dialogue may have forced politicians in the capital to recognize the Houthis as a legitimate political force, while providing for a comparatively open forum for the discussion of southerners' grievances, but its deliberations often feel like rehashing long-running factional squabbles.
Even if new parties have been formed, the post-2011 political map often feels indistinguishable from the old one. Discussions in Sanaa tend to devolve into debates over the divide between the GPC and the Joint Meeting Parties (JMP), an ideologically fractious coalition of leftist and Islamist factions dominated by the Islah Party, which incorporates the bulk of the Yemeni Muslim Brotherhood, and the Socialist and Nasserist parties. In that sense, there's been little change since 2005, when the JMP was initially formed.
The activists who spurred the former president's ouster -- and, for that matter, many politicians here -- have been open about their misgivings about the shape of Yemen's post-Saleh transition. But it has generally been accepted as the only option aside from further violence and instability.
Gathered around watching news coverage with activists on June 30 and July 1, however, it seemed the scenes in Cairo and other Egyptian cities had provided a potential course of action.

For a few brief days, there was talk about building a Yemeni Tamarod (or rebels, as the Cairo protestors called themselves). There were unofficial discussions between activists from across the political spectrum; the date for massive protests aimed at "correcting the course of the revolution" was tentatively set for July 7. Even at the speculative stage, though, disagreements about everything from demands to acceptable protest slogans foreshadowed that things would eventually come to naught. July 7 came and went with only street protests in the south, as secessionists marked the anniversary of their defeat in Yemen's 1994 civil war. The closest thing I witnessed to an outburst of discontent came a few days prior. Driving with a friend past the home of Yemen's embattled prime minister, Mohamed Basindowa, he rolled down his car window, stopped briefly, and shouted "Leave, Uncle Mohamed!"
The absence of Egypt-style protests hardly means people here are happy with the way things are going. Hoped-for improvements in the stagnant economy and the tenuous security situation remain largely elusive: kidnappings of foreigners have increased in frequency, while security officials continue to be targeted in a string of assassinations. The recurring sabotage of power lines has left even residents of the capital at the mercy of disgruntled tribesmen. Even if Hadi has held on to much of his tenuous public support, Yemenis from across the political spectrum have condemned the unity government as a failure.
Still, it seems, no one is willing to make a move. Chewing qat with a collection of GPC politicians on July 2, their enthusiasm for the protests against Morsy was palpable; Yahya Mohamed Saleh, the former Yemeni president's nephew, had already stopped by Cairo's Tahrir Square to show his solidarity with the "revolution against the Ikhwan [Muslim Brotherhood]." They watched as revolutionaries and remnants of the Mubarak regime joined together against a common foe, and I wondered if they thought they felt they could pull off a similar feat here, capitalizing on the longstanding misgivings many Saleh opponents hold regarding the Islah Party. 
"The question is no longer ‘with the revolution or against it,'" an activist had told me a few days before. "The stage has changed. What matters now is who is truly for or against building the state."
Comments like that are music to the GPC's ears. But that enthusiasm among revolutionaries and the regime's old guard seems distant from the current political reality.
Complaints over Islah's increased influence in post-Saleh Yemen notwithstanding, the power the party currently holds is in no way comparable to that of Morsy's Freedom and Justice Party. In the event of any possible shakeup, all parties would almost inevitably be affected; while plenty may raise issue with the current balance of power, few seem willing to take the risk of upsetting it.
--> Perhaps, however, it's the way things have gone in Egypt that has ultimately doomed any real aftereffects here. The violence and uncertainty since the July 3 coup has led many to quiet their misgivings about Yemen's own post-Arab Spring transition. It may be far from perfect, the argument goes, but things could certainly be worse.
There were certainly plenty of Yemenis who celebrated the military's overthrow of Morsy; plenty of others cast it as a far from ideal, but necessary step. But even many Yemenis with little sympathy for the Muslim Brotherhood have expressed a deep discomfort as events have unfolded, wondering if it's all a message about the fragility of the tentative gains made in the wake of the Arab Spring.
"I don't like Morsy, but it's hard not to see the army overthrowing an elected president as a negative step -- a step backwards," an activist told me. "It makes me nervous about where Yemen is heading: Wherever Egypt was [before June 30], it was far ahead of where we are now."