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Memories of Mohamed Morsi Egypt’s Ex-President died, or was murdered, reciting a poem locked in a cage

Andre Vltchek

Former President of Egypt, Mohamed Morsi, had finished his 15-minute discourse in a courtroom, while being locked inside a sound-proofed cage. He read a poem about his love for Egypt, and then collapsed, and died.

His demise sent shock-waves all over Egypt, the region and the Muslim world.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan refused to accept the official story, claiming that the former Egyptian president Mohamed Morsi “did not die, he was murdered”.

More came from different corners of the world. According to Reuters:

A British member of Parliament, Crispin Blunt, who had led a delegation of UK lawmakers and lawyers last year in putting out a report on Mursi’s detention, slammed the conditions of Mursi’s incarceration.

We want to understand whether there was any change in his conditions since we reported in March 2018, and if he continued to be held in the conditions we found, then I’m afraid the Egyptian government are likely to be responsible for his premature death,” he said in remarks to the BBC.”

Human rights organizations, heads of state, as well as the common citizens of Egypt, were outraged by the demise of Mohamed Morsi (also spelt as Mursi), a former Egyptian leader who governed the nation after winning the first democratic elections in the modern history of the country in 2012, just a year after the brutal pro-Western dictator, Hosni Mubarak, was deposed in 2011.

Mr. Morsi was overthrown in 2013, in a violent military coup just one year after he was sworn into the highest office.

*

Let’s be clear: Mohamed Morsi was not a ‘good president’.

In fact, he was not supposed to be a president at all: the original candidate from his party was disqualified from the elections on a technicality, and Mr. Morsi was asked to take his place. And he won, by a small margin.

He made some serious errors, politically, economically and socially.

He flooded tunnels between Gaza and Sinai.

And under his leadership, more than 40 people died during the violence in Port Said.

When he felt threatened, he used to give orders to fire poisonous gasses at the protesters.

But he was not a murderer. And in ‘modern’ Egypt, that was quite an achievement.

He tried to improve the dire situation in his country, but he kept failing.

On the other hand, he separated his government from the gangrenous military embrace. The western-sponsored Egyptian military has been managing to infiltrate everything (under Mubarak’s rule as well as now), fully controlling all aspects of the Egyptian state.

Mr. Morsi tried to please everyone in the terribly divided Egyptian society. But in the end, nobody was satisfied.

Hard-liners in his Muslim Brotherhood hated him for not being radical enough. The anti-religious Left despised him for not pushing harder for social reforms, and for a secular state. He was both obeying the US and the IMF, while at the same time alienating them.

In the end, he appeared like an uncertain, confused and weak man.

Destruction in Port Said

*

In 2012 and 2013, my friends, my left-wing comrades, were battling police in front of the Presidential Palace in Cairo. I was there, with them, filming, face covered with water-soaked rags in order to at least somehow protect myself from the highly poisonous teargas.

In those days, no one seemed to like Morsi.

The rallying cry during the anti-Morsi protests was:

We sing to those who deserve to die;
Morsi-Morsi-Morsi!”

Protesters could not have known that 7 years later, their prophecy would come through.

Protests against the 2013 oup

After the military overthrew the democratically elected government (on 3 July 2013), massacres began. Officially hundreds, but most likely thousands of people lost their lives. Tens of thousands were arrested, disappeared, tortured, raped, and exiled.

Members of the Muslim Brotherhood were liquidated (soon after the coup it became a banned organization), but also various left-wing organizations and individuals, as well as all those people who were against the corrupt right-wing military and its dictatorship.

Several of my friends had to leave the country. Others are still in prison. Or in hiding.

Former dictator, Western puppet and assassin Hosni Mubarak, is now a free man again. He is 91 years old.

67-year-old Mohamed Morsi is dead.

*

During the Morsi era, as well as during and after the 2013 coup, I was working in Egypt, making a documentary film for the Venezuelan television channel Telesur – (“Egipto: El Fin de Una Revolucion”, “Egypt:End of the Revolution”).

First, I investigated and wrote about the crimes committed during the reign of President Morsi in the city of Port Said: “Notes from a Besieged City”.

And then, I was right there, in the middle of the battles, when the Egyptian military overthrew Morsi’s government and began liquidating both the Muslim Brotherhood, and the Egyptian left wing. I described the events in my essays “Egypt End of Hope” and “Egypt in the Eye of the Storm”.

Many more essays from Egypt were then compiled in my book “Exposing Lies of The Empire”.

Once, while filming after the coup, I found myself facing 5 tanks, all pointing their cannons at me. How I survived, I am not sure. Others did not. By the time I finished collecting footage for my film, my body was covered by scars and bruises.

From among those individuals who used to work with me on the film, and from those who used to protest against then-President Morsi, there is hardly anyone now who would support the current rule of pro-Western military junta.

Rallies in 2012 and 2013 were all about improving Egypt; about forcing Morsi to deliver what millions of mostly young Egyptians hoped would be a just, secular and socialist society. Morsi was expected to deliver, or to resign, giving way to a better, more ‘progressive’ leader.

What came instead was a coup, a return of the fascist clique of Mubarak, supported by the US, Europe and Israel.

Looking back, I believe that Mohamed Morsi was a decent human being, but at the same time a bad, untalented, naive and confused ruler. That was still much, much better than what was before and after him.

*

In her opinion piece for the New York Times, the Egyptian author Mona Eltahawy wrote about the demise of Mohamad Morsi:

…He always looked like a man caught up in something much bigger than him. That he died in an Egyptian courtroom inside a soundproof cage designed to silence him, almost exactly six years to the day he took office and almost completely forgotten by all but his family and human rights activists, is a reminder of the bathos that surrounded him.

Then, Ms. Eltahawy put his death into the context of the present-day Egypt:

Decimated as it is, however, the Muslim Brotherhood is unlikely to be able to pull off mass protests in Egypt, where protests became all but impossible under a draconian law passed soon after Mr. el-Sisi came to power.

This, too, is what Mr. el-Sisi has achieved: From July 2013, when Mr. Morsi was overthrown, and January 2016, when the Egyptian parliament reconvened, between 16,000 and 41,000 people, most supporters of the now-banned Muslim Brotherhood, were reportedly arrested or detained (Some were liberal or secular activists).

Since then, a spike in death sentences and executions, extrajudicial killings, forced disappearances and a determined effort to wipe out any form of dissent have all but crushed the Brotherhood, as well as most other forms of opposition. Muslim Brotherhood supporters are insisting that Mr. Morsi be eulogized as a martyr at the same time that many state-owned media are reporting on his death without even mentioning that he was once president.

Frankly speaking, the era of Morsi feels like the only period in modern Egyptian history, when ‘everything was possible’, and when one was at least allowed to dream and to fight for a much better future. Yes, of course, the fight was taking place through teargas, and people got injured, some even killed. But they dared, they were not broken and humiliated like now.

The so-called ‘Arab Spring’ was manipulated, and most likely ‘created’ by the West. But in 2011 to 2013, there was also a parallel, independent, left-wing upsurge of anti-establishment, anti-capitalist and anti-military movements. There was a struggle, and Egypt could have gone in any direction.

I will never forget that year; “the year of Morsi”. We were risking our lives, often suffering direct physical assaults. Different political factions were at each other throats. Steam was out. Passions were boiling. Nothing was certain, everything possible.

That year, while making my film, I was with a group of socialist doctors; true Marxists. They did not doubt that Egypt could go socialist, if they fought harder. I also worked with Wassim Wagdy, one of the leaders of Revolutionary Socialist Organization.

And then, everything collapsed, literally overnight. 3 July 2013.

When did I realize that everything was over? It happened in Heliopolis – in a affluent suburb of Cairo – in a park.

Hundreds of rich families went to celebrate the coup, wearing T-shirts depicting el-Sisi and his cronies. It looked like some historic photos from 9-11-1973 – from the days when the coup perpetrated by General Pinochet against President Allende in Chile. It was different, of course it was; but it looked the same. US-sponsored coups always look the same. And so do the faces of the elites that support them!

I read about the demise of Morsi onboard MEA, from Istanbul to Beirut. I felt immense sadness. I did not know why, precisely. Certainly, it was not for the Mr. Morsi’s reign. But most likely it was for that time, for that hope that was now totally choked and abandoned. For the days when ‘everything was possible’; when people were ready and willing to fight for their country.

Egypt is a ‘failed’ state now. Scared, frustrated, poor and totally corrupt. A state that is devouring its own people.

When I go to one of countless slums of Cairo, these days, people look at me with open hate. They see me as a foreigner, as someone who helped to throw them back to hopelessness and misery. Of course, they don’t know that several years ago I fought for them, at least as a filmmaker, side-by-side with their nation’s socialist vanguard.

I also feel sadness for Morsi the man, if not Morsi the president. I somehow sense that the patriotic poem that he read before collapsing and dying, came straight from his heart.

In one single year when he governed, he did his best. His best was not good enough. He failed.

But he did not deserve to die like this, muzzled and humiliated, in a cage!

He deserved better. And his country, Egypt, deserves much, much better, damn it!

First published by NEO – New Eastern Outlook

Andre Vltchek is a philosopher, novelist, filmmaker and investigative journalist. He has covered wars and conflicts in dozens of countries. Three of his latest books are Revolutionary Optimism, Western Nihilism, a revolutionary novel “Aurora” and a bestselling work of political non-fiction: “Exposing Lies Of The Empire”. View his other books here. Watch Rwanda Gambit, his groundbreaking documentary about Rwanda and DRCongo and his film/dialogue with Noam Chomsky “On Western Terrorism”. Vltchek presently resides in East Asia and the Middle East, and continues to work around the world. He can be reached through his website and his Twitter.

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Andre Vltchek is a philosopher, novelist, filmmaker and investigative journalist. He has covered wars and conflicts in dozens of countries. Three of his latest books are Revolutionary Optimism, Western Nihilism, a revolutionary novel “Aurora” and a bestselling work of political non-fiction: “Exposing Lies Of The Empire”. View his other books here. Watch Rwanda Gambit, his groundbreaking documentary about Rwanda and DRCongo and his film/dialogue with Noam Chomsky “On Western Terrorism”. Vltchek presently resides in East Asia and the Middle East, and continues to work around the world. He can be reached through his website and his Twitter.

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Mostafa Hamid
Mostafa Hamid

The Egyptian Catholic church did not like Mohamed Morsi and it is the main reason behind his death indirectly with the collaboration of the Egyptian armed forces.

Greg Schofield
Greg Schofield

Mubarak was Washington’s man, but he would not sanction an invasion of Libya, so while he was disposed Libya was invaded by American mercenary forces that had since Clinton’s day been massed in Siwa and Faiyum, the Siwa group used the old WWII long range patrol route through the desert to Benghazi, I was at Siwa and I saw the hundreds of tire-tracks that came from Siwa and crossed the highway to its north.

Morsi (Muslim Brotherhood), oversaw the transfer of thousands of mercenaries from Libya, through to Alexandria and onto Turkey where they invaded Syria via Iblib, under the watchful eye Erdogan (Muslim Brotherhood). 10,000 ids were burnt by the police in Faiyum a few months after their departure was a news story when I was there.

Suadi Arabia sponsor of ISIS (trained in Jordan in 2013), was not pleased to have a rival, and backed Sisi to take out Morsi. They then used their funds in the US along with US front men to ‘build a new capital’ and the rich folks salivated for the contracts, which still have not appeared.

I visited Egypt after the invasion of Libya, and before the presidential election, blithely unaware that Al Jaziree was under new management and swallowing the Arab Spring wholesale, not then knowing much about Libya. It was traveling from Alexandria to Siwa I fell in with some ‘journalists’, one Alex, German speaker, remonstrated on the road against a picture of Gaddafi in a highway stop, then in Siwa many of the local really disliked this guy, I asked one of the other journalists where they were going next —- Syria was the reply.

It was months before all the pennies dropped.

BigB
BigB

The pseudo-left ‘progressive’ banner also flies at full mast for Russia. Apparently, VVP is not a neoliberal – and with Xi – he is building a purely trade based, beneficial for all concerned, economic alt-globalist alliance. One that is anti-interventionist, peaceful, and rules based …and above all: an anti-imperialist, counter-hegemonic bloc. One that is fair, humanitarian, and based on mutually beneficial economic trade, investment, tourism, technology, arms trading, and SDG Agenda 2030 sustainable growth.

So, VVP wouldn’t have anything to do with US-backed blood-soaked hangman el-Sisi either? Or meet him several times: or sign a ‘strategic partnership’ and bilateral trade deals with him (including arms deals – see below) …”to mark a new stage of our traditionally friendly relations?” [Medvedev in his pre-meeting with the tyrant].

When increasing trade by a third year on year with murderous dictatorships is your method of trade: who needs imperialism?

http://government.ru/en/news/34351/
http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/1/64/313528/Egypt/Politics-/Russias-Putin,-Egypts-Sisi-hold-informal-talks-in-.aspx

A $2bn deal for 20 Su-35 fighter jets: rubles for Russia …austerity, repression, murder, and attacks from Russian fighter jets* for the bloodied Egyptians?

Not very ‘progressive’ to support despotic murderers entrench themselves in perpetual power? Not even realpolitik ‘progression’? Or even imaginary ‘progression’?

[*from 2020-21: source – RT]

mark
mark

Vlad The Bad is faced with the United Snakes and its 28 NATO satellites, and its satraps in the Gulf, Latin America, Japan, Australia, South Korea, and elsewhere.

He’s holding his nose and trying to make friends wherever he can – Sisi, Erdogan, even a few of the Gulf head choppers. It’s called survival and breaking the encirclement.

BigB
BigB

Bibi: how is he breaking the ‘encirclement’ of Russia? He’s a US asset – or he who is running the US’ foreign policy as you are always telling me. He ain’t breaking anyone out of anywhere. Who was the first to recognise West al-Quds as Irael’s capital? How is that anti-encirclement?

Or Sisi? Also a US asset.

Or Omar al-Bashir in his heyday in Sudan/Darfur?

That is an awful lot of tolerable genocide to satisfy Russia’s strategic interests. My allegiance is to the genocided: not the genocider. If we can turn aside from genocide and rationalise it as being in someones ‘national interest’ …what becomes of exclusionary ethnocentric exceptionalism? Is it not being acclimatised and normalised? Is Russia supporting genocidiaires rationalised as OK not a moral relativism? Why is Bibi’s slow-genocide not OK then?

If we accept only some genocides as crimes against humanity – but others as somehow acceptable in the national interest …what have we become?

That is what I am asking.

mark
mark

Let me explain it to you.
Russian diplomacy has been summarised as follows.
Do whatever you can to turn enemies into neutrals, neutrals into friends, and friends into allies.
Putin will deal with any reptiles to further that aim.
Russia has been targeted for destruction.
Any advantage that can be gained is worth the effort.

BigB
BigB

I’m not Russian: I have no national interests. But even if I did: recognising West al-Quds as Israel’s capital – before even Trump – goes way beyond mere national interest …ask any Palestinian what that means.

Selling fighter jets to al-Bashir and el-Sisi: that keeps the Sukhoi workers happy and the GDP rising …at what cost to the Sudanese and Egyptian national interest – the real national interest of the actual people who will die by el-Sisi’s hand? Al-Bashir has gone – but the ‘Janjaweed’ militiamen replacing him are just as bad, by most reports. Do the real people of Sudan and Egypt care if their oppressor is kept in power by the Russian or the US imperialists? They are just as repressed, just as murdered and just as raped – are they not?

We are not statesmen – we are humans. There is nothing coercing us to view things as through a statist imperialist lens. For all the rhetoric: no one is invading Russia …check history. Russia has vast resources of its own, a surfeit of agricultural production, and vast interior geography for internal ‘spatio-temporal’ and technological fixes. Russia could develop its own civilisational model, with its own currency, and focus on its own people. A political view very many Russians would find preferential. As the Saker. A view my friends in St Petersburg would endorse.

Instead, VVP is gladhanding blood soaked autocrats – including Bibi – and propping up their militias with arms sales. This alter-globalist neoliberal model is overstepping the national and the international interest …if and when that interest is framed humanistically.

Closer inspection would reveal that the AI-fintech ‘Eurasian Information Infrastructure’; EAEU-CPEC-BRI-SCO supercontinental integration; under the aegis of the WTO-UN-IMF-WB-BIS global governance architecture; employing the very same SDG Agenda 2030 sustainable development model that has been rolling out globally – and was endorsed at SPIEF 2019 …is in fact the new rebranded green neoliberal Zeitgeist. So tell me again whose national interest he is working in oppressing the already oppressed?

Not Russias, not mine, not yours …and certainly not the oppressed crushed under Erdogan, Bibi, el-Sisi’s and al-Bashir’s successors heals. Perhaps we need to reframe our solidarity and empathy with the real lives lost and ruined to reflect this? Not endorse the abstract advertorial statist ‘national interest’ overview that masks the real repressive global terror regime?

Seamus Padraig
Seamus Padraig

Actually, Obama was backing Morsi rather than al-Sisi. Several years ago, Washington and Doha were heavily promoting the Muslim Brotherhood all over the ME, including in Egypt. It was mostly because Saudi Arabia rejected the Brotherhood ruling Egypt that Morsi fell.

BigB
BigB

Way to go, Andre: I can only respect your courage against the imperialist-backed tyrant, el-Sisi.

But is he that bad? He seems to have found a friend in liberal-left progessive darling Tulsi Gabbard. She praised him for his fight against the Muslim Brotherhood:

“President el-Sisi has shown great courage and leadership in taking on this extreme Islamist ideology”

…And recommended the US gave him aid. Which they duly did: $3bn …

“This aid has gone to the purchase of F-16 fighter jets, M1A1 Abrams battle tanks, Apache attack helicopters and Humvees, all of which have been unleashed upon the population of the Sinai Peninsula.”

Pseudo-left progessive liberals surely wouldn’t back someone who backs a blood-soaked dictatorship that hands down industrialised death sentences on his own people – including children – merely for assembling in defiance?

https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2019/05/30/egyp-m30.html

There must be some mistake: Tulsi is going to make a great anti-interventionist POTUS (for Israel, India, and Egypt) …according to the so-called progessive institutionally life-blind imagination …

https://gabbard.house.gov/news/press-releases/photos-rep-tulsi-gabbard-meets-egypt-president-el-sisi-and-other-leaders-cairo

I’m sure she is. But for the average brutally repressed and tortured Egyptian citizen …who the “progessive” solidarity should really support …not so much.

mark
mark

The current Zionist puppet Sisi managed to impose death sentences in 10 minute mass trials on people who were actually dead. I don’t know if they exhumed the bodies to carry out the sentences.

The Neocohens were baying for Morsi’s blood from the day he was elected. He wasn’t seen as sufficiently grovelling and obsequious to Israel, maintaining contacts with Hamas instead of cooperating fully and sufficiently enthusiastically in their genocidal pogroms against Gaza.

The western media did everything they could to whitewash Sisi and the demonstrations that overthrew him, coming up with fantasy crowds of 30, 33. and finally 34 million. Any system that is remotely democratic is wide open to their lies and manipulation.

Seamus Padraig
Seamus Padraig

Morsi was, however, fully on board with the régime-change plot in Syria. After all, the first Syrian rebels actually were Muslim Brotherhood sympathizers, too, just like Morsi party in Egypt. This is also what led to the break between Hamas and Damascus: their sympathy for the Brotherhood (of which they used to be a part).

mark
mark

That’s very true. Morsi’s government was not a success but it was properly elected. He should have been voted out in the next election. Instead we got a return to a pliable puppet dictatorship – and this suits the Neocohens just fine. They were agitating for him to be overthrown from the outset.

John
John

Tulsi is Obama’s hope and change 2.0