Tuesday, April 8, 2008

A Tale of Two Cities

Actually the title should have been the "A Tale of Two Countries", but I was just trying to lure any Dickens lovers out there. If you compare what is published and aired by the government owned media to what is published and aired by the foreign & independent Egyptian media (including Blogs) you would actually think that they are talking about Two Different Countries and not our one and only beloved EGYPT!!

This phenomenon is best demonstrated by the coverage of the events of the 6th of April. The government-owned media (G Media for short) has insisted that the day was just another NORMAL day were there was nothing but "business as usual". On the other hand the non-governmental media (N media) reported unusual less crowded streets, but a limited no-show in the work force and schools & colleges. The G Media's 9pm TV news bulletin, did not mention anything about the demonstrations & riots in the streets of Mahalla, while the N Media portrayed a completely different image. Today, both G & N media are reporting more about Mahalla, but again from two totally different perspectives. The former talking about a conspiracy, and the importance of finding and dealing with the traitors behind the calls for the strike and the criminals responsible for the riots, while most of the latter are talking about the threats made to the workers to abort the planned strike, the police brutality, and the numbers of arrests or casualties.

Since I did not witness what actually went on myself, I will not take sides, but I will leave you to judge for yourself. Here are some links to G Media & N Media (I won't tell you which is which, I am sure you will figure it out yourself) :

Ahram, 6 April Blog, Arabawy, ElAkhbar,
Al Wa3ii el Masry, Baheyya, AlGomhuria,
AlJazeera, The Guardian, AlMasry AlYoum,
India News, BBC, Malek Mustafa Blog, Manalaa

As you see, very few focused on the importance of finding and dealing with the problems that turned many peaceful Egyptians into time bombs that are ready to blow up by the slightest provocation (one of those few is Dr. Diaa Rashwan). I love Egypt, and I condemn any hand that destroys, burns, or loots. But I also love Egyptians, and I support any peaceful action that would help the struggling Egyptians lift the crushing burdens of poverty, unemployment, and lack of social justice all of which lead to despair.

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