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7000 years and counting ...

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    Ahad Tamimi
    Ahad Tamimi after her release
    "Ahmed Arouri" 
    Famous Palestinian teen activist Ahad Tamimi was released from Israeli prison on Wednesday.
    She was released after serving 8 months in jail for attacking an Israeli soldier or rather slapping an Israeli soldier as her little cousin was shot down by another Israeli soldier.
    Ahad was received by camera flashes and TV interview requests as she became a new iconic face of the Palestinians and their struggle.

    Needless to say, her mother Nermeen who was also imprisoned with her spoke about the elephant in the room we know and see about her daughter: She got international support, unlike another Palestinian teenager because of her blonde look. 

    I am happy she is free "or partially free realistically speaking as she is on the radar of IDF" and I hope she continues staying away from that old Arab nationalism politics of her dad. I hope she succeeds in studying international law so she can help in freeing other Palestinians detainees and also become a political figure in the future.
    Ahad is free now but there are more than 6500 Palestinian prisoners or POWs as Palestinians describe them in the Israeli prisons for political reasons.
    Among them, there are 350 children prisoners. There are too 800 prisoners who have a health condition and need true and better health treatment.
    There are also 700 Palestinian detainees who are still in prison with no charge or trial because of the Israeli administrative detention system.
    The girl who ate ice cream as soon as she got out of prison and returned back to her village; has not forgotten about them either.

    Ola Marshood
    Ola Marshood 
    On the same day, the Tamimi girl with curly hair was released to her family; another Palestinian young was sentenced to jail for 7 months by an Israeli military court because of activism in University against the occupation.

    The girl is called Ola Marshood and she is a 21 years old student in the faculty of Mass communication, Nagah University. You can find her YouTube channel here.

    On Thursday, Palestinian Poet Dareen Tatour was sentenced 7 months because of she wrote a poem attacking the Israeli occupation and calling for resistance.

    Since October 2015, she has been detained sometimes in prison and sometimes under house arrest all that time because of a poem.

    Dareen Tatour
    Dareen Tatour at court 
    Pen International has been calling for the release of Tatour for some time now but Israel does not give damn.

    Lama Khater
    Lama hugging her little boy
    Before Ola and Dareen are sentenced to jail and before Ahad Tamimi was released, on 24 July a Palestinian writer was taken a group of Israeli soldiers from her house because of what she had written against the Israeli occupation.

    42-years old Lama Khater was arrested from her house on 24 July and currently, she is detained pending investigation because of she wrote online against the occupation.

    Lama Khater’s photos showing her hugging her 3-years-old son good bye at night as Israeli IDF thugs were standing behind her went viral. No mother should be separated from her child because she wrote something criticizing an occupation !!

    And just before anyone brings up my own country’s record in jailing poets and writers, I am totally against the imprisonment of writers and poets let alone military trials for civilians in front of military courts.

    Personally, I wish the Egyptian authors union would act and issue a statement demanding the release of Dareen and Lama but I doubt they would do that.

    They failed to do that with their fellow Egyptian writers and poets like Poet Galal El-Behairy who was sentenced on Tuesday to three years in prison for insulting the Egyptian army.

    Galal El-Behairy was found guilty of writing a poem insulting the Egyptian army in front of a military court.
    Lama Khater 
    He was reported to the military prosecution by lawyer Tarek Mahmoud in March allegedly for insulting the Egyptian army and Prophet Mohamed “PBUH” in his alleged collection of poems under the name “The best women of the world”.

    “The best women of the world” is a direct mockery to the alleged Prophet Mohamed “PBUH” quote that “Egypt has the best soldiers of the world”.

    According to El-Behairy’s lawyers, he was found guilty of publishing a collection of poems that have not been published yet despite Raseef22 published its cover.

    From what I understand when Pro-regime media began to attack the young poet, his publishing house canceled his contract and did not release the collection of poems in early March.
    Some people say “The best women of world” collection of poems is available online as PDF but I have not seen it yet.

    Either way, Behairy became famous after it was found that he had written the lyrics of Ramy Essam’s anti-Sisi song “Balha” just before the presidential elections.
    International human rights organizations and organizations like Pen International have called the release of Behairy for the past months but in vain.

    Back to Palestine, I have one good last news to share with you as I read it earlier this week.
    According to the World Bank Gender group, 23% of Palestinian high-tech entrepreneurs are women despite all the hardships they face and it is one of the highest rates in the World.
    I do not think that this is shared in mainstream media as it should. You know this fact now and I think it is deserved to be shared.

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  • 08/05/18--14:16: Mars close to earth [Flickr]
  • Kodak Agfa posted a photo:

    Mars close to earth

    Mars is currently in its closest position to Planet earth since 2003

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    Kodak Agfa posted a photo:

    Red Mars or El Qahar in Cairo sky

    According to some historians , Cairo was named in Arabic "El-Qahira" in reference to Mars's name in Arabic "El-Qahar" , "the conquerer". This is how Mars appeared on my camera using a 55-210mm zoom only

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    In the past two weeks, news came from Syria that the people in the cities Al-Assad regime regained control on recently began to receive official death certificates of their relatives who were forcibly disappeared or arrested by Al-Assad security forces in the past seven years as the Assad regime updates its civil registries.

    Syrian News website Zaman Al-Wsl received at the end of July a huge list of nearly 7953 deceased Syrian political prisoners arrested fromSyria’s 14 governorates from 2011 till 2018
    Yes, at least 7953 human beings were killed in Syrian regime’s prisons in those seven years.
    The list is confirmed by other news websites, local activists and Syrian human rights organizations.

    A photo snapped from a Syrian town last by AFP
    A photo snapped from a Syrian town last by AFP 
    Syria’s Rif Dimashq governorate top the list with 1856 victim followed by the cradle of the Syrian revolution Daraa governorate with 1283 victim and Homs governorate with 1253 victim according to Zaman Al-Wsl database which you can browse if you know Arabic.

    The Syrian capital Damascus got alone 870 victim followed by Hama which got 762 victim while Idlib got 585 victim.
    Aleppo has got so far 473 victims while Deir ez-Zor has got 450 victim.
    The numbers then decline to 154 victim in Latakia and 110 victim in Quneitra to 50 victim in Raqqa and 44 victim in Al-Hasakah governorate.
    Tartus governorate got only 28 victim while As-Suwayda which was rocked last week by Daesh attack has got 23 victim in the list.
    There are two Syrian victims whose origin could not be identified and there are 10 names from different countries.
    There is one Egyptian in the list who was called Youssef Abdel Samad.
    I tried to search for more info using his name but I got nothing.
    Abdel Samad was executed on 27 September 2016. It is unclear where he was arrested or when or whether he stood a trial at all or not.

    According to the list , 307 prisoners died in the prisons in 2011 only whereas the number increased to 1119 prisoners in 2012. In 2013 , the numbers doubled in 2120 prisoners deceased in the Syrian governmental prisons.
    In 2014, the numbers reached 2276 prisoners according to the list
    It declined to 1413 prisoners in 2015 then to 401 prisoners in 2016 and then to 146 in 2017.
    In 2018 , only 170 prisoners have either been executed or have been tortured till death so far.
    Some Syrian citizens are leaving the names of their forced disappeared relatives in the comment section at the opposition news websites wondering if their names are in that list Zaman Al-Wsl has got.“Check the page below”

    I do not understand how some people “including the officials of my country” speak about Al-Assad and his regime as a part of political talks and reconciliation when we got at least 7000 Syrian killed in that regime’s prison.

    Those prisoners are not numbers.
    There are so 125 child and underage prisoners who were killed according to that list. There are 63 women prisoners that were killed according to the database. Some of them were from the same families including fathers and sons as well as brothers and sisters.

    They had names and dreams and stories to share.
    They had faces and stories to be told.“Source: Syrian Network for human rights
    On 23 April 2012, National Syrian basketball team player Sameh Srour was arrested by regime security at Damascus International airport. The 1981-born athlete from Daraa was allegedly tortured till death in February 2018.
    Late Sameh Srour
    Late Sameh Srorur 
    On 25 August 2012, Emad al-Din Shoaib was arrested from his house in Darraya.He was tortured allegedly till death in July 2015 in a detention center.
    Late Emad al-Din Shoaib
    Late Emad al-Din Shoaib
    On 30 September 2012, Zuhair Shehada was arrested at a Syrian regime checkpoint in his city Darayya. The 1986-born man was tortured allegedly till death on December 17,2014.
    Late Zuhair Shehada
    Late Zuhair Shehada 
    On 21 August 2013, Omar al-Saqqa was also arrested at a Syrian regime checkpoint in his home city Darayya. The 1965-born man was tortured by Al-Assad forces allegedly till death on August 13,2014.
    Late Omar al-Saqqa
    Late Omar al-Saqqa 
    On 8 October 2014, footballer Mahmoud al-Ali was arrested from his house in Damascus. The young footballer originally from Hasaka was reportedly tortured till death at infamous Sednaya prison in Damascus.
    Late Mohame al-Ali
    Late Mohame al-Ali 
    On 16 November 2014, 22-years-old Lama Nawaf al-Basha was arrested from home in al-Tal. The University student who aspired to become a project manager was tortured till death in her detention.
    Only now her family knew her destiny.
    Late Lama Nawaf
    Late Lama Nawaf 
    In 2014, Ahmed al-Ahmed al-Wakeel was also arrested from Deir Ez-Zour governorate and that tortured till death by Al-Assad forces in his detention. His family and SNHR” also received information of his death in August 2018.
    Late Ahmed Al-Ahmed
    Late Ahmed Al-Ahmed 
    You can find more names and faces on the official website of SNHR
    The true extremists of Al-Qaeda were released by Al-Assad regime in 2011 and 2012 for a reason I think we all have known now.

    I have not read so far any statement issued by an Arab government or the League of Arab states “I am naïve and I know it but sometimes I have faith in miracles to happen”.

    By the way, Assadist Media figures are angry of Palestinian teenage activist Ahad Tamimi calling her “a fake hero” hinting out that she could be a spy because she wished good luck for the Syrian people only through Syrian Radio station !!
    Tamimi was interviewed by a Pro-Assad Privately-owned “Al-Medina FM” station following her release and she was asked what she would say to the Syrian Arab Army and its youth soldiers who had been away from their families for 7 years. “May God protect the Syrian people and Syria” The teenager who has been released from an Israeli prison last week told the radio host through the phone in the West Bank.
    It did not make many Assadists happy.

    Needless to say , many Arabs especially Syrians had their moment of wonder when they saw Ahad Tamimi and her mother Nermine looking good after spending 7 months in an Israeli prison.
    Israel did not waste that moment and its official speakers to the Arab World used it as part of their propaganda.
    I like to remind the Israeli media machine also the rest of the Arabs that if Ahad Tamimi and her mother look good, then it is because of the strikes of the Palestinian political prisoners led in the Israeli prisons to receive better treatment.
    Anyhow , the world is failing the Syrians just as it has been failing the Palestinians over and over.

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  • 08/06/18--16:18: Catching Mars from Cairo
  • Last week, Planet Mars was in its closest position to our planet earth for the first time since 2003. If you had looked to the sky at night then, you may have seen a shining red dot appearing amazingly.
    That’s our neighbor Mars and I could not resist the opportunity to capture it in a photo.

    I do not have a telescope right now “ I am thinking of getting one” and I do not have a telephoto zoom lens “Lenses’ prices reaches Planet Pluto since the Egyptian pound flotation ” so I tried to do it using my zoom lens “55-210” despite I know in advance.
    The results are not great but let’s remember that I got a 210mm lens trying to capture a planet that is 225 million kilometers away from me or actually from earth.
    Mars close to earth
    Planet Mars
    A little small red sparkling ball Mars appeared in the skies of Cairo and Giza that night. At first, I thought it was an airplane passing by at night but it did not move and I know that I was looking at that red planet.
    Mars , the red planet
    Small red dot 

    The red planet was crystal clear in the city lights that it did not matter if all the lights were buzzing in the street.
    A sparking little red dot
    Mars away 

    Now a little important historical fact that it is not trivial at all.
    According to some historians, Cairo was named in Arabic "El-Qahira" in reference to Mars' name in Arabic "El-Qahar", "the conqueror".
    Red Mars or El Qahar in Cairo sky
    Close up Mars 
    Cairo is named after Planet Mars in Arabic, oh yes.
    According to some historians, Cairo was named in Arabic "El-Qahira" in reference to Mars' name in Arabic "El-Qahar", "the conqueror".
    The story goes that the co-founder of Cairo Fatimid Caliph El-Muiz Li Din Allah brought the astrologers and astronomers as it was the custom in that age to see which star or planet appeared in the sky so they would name of new cities after it. It was Mars appearing in the night as a big red that night.
    Mars’ original name in old times in Arabic was “El-Qahar”, the Conqueror and it does not need a historian to know that the name had a relation with the myths surrounding Mars and its color with wars.
    For some reason, the astrologers warned El-Muiz not to name the new capital after El-Qahar but he insisted to name it “El-Qahira” and it became one of the biggest and most surviving capitals after all in the world.

    By the way , I will seize the moment and share with you that failed attempt of recording a time-lapse video for the lunar eclipse Egypt and the Middle East saw from several days ago.

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    Kodak Agfa posted a photo:

    Mummified Animals section at Egyptian Museum of Cairo

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    Kodak Agfa posted a photo:

    Animal skeletons at mummified animal section in the Egyptian Museum of Cairo

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    Kodak Agfa posted a photo:

    Animal skeletons at mummified animal section in the Egyptian Museum of Cairo

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    Kodak Agfa posted a photo:

    Animal skeletons at mummified animal section in the Egyptian Museum of Cairo

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    Kodak Agfa posted a photo:

    Animal skeletons at mummified animal section in the Egyptian Museum of Cairo

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    The Egyptian Museum Cat
    That cat is among the famous cats of the Egyptian Museum of Cairo 
    One more photo to celebrate the International Cat day and a throwback to my visits to the Egyptian Museum of Cairo.
    This was one of its famous cats wondering freely in its corridors and garden. 

    Despite many will dislike having cats like that wondering freely in Egypt’s most important museum yet I can’t keep thinking that those cats were once worshiped by our Ancient Egyptian ancestors and the museum got tons of cat statues and mummified cats there.
    Mummified Animals section at Egyptian Museum of Cairo
    A mummified cat stands in pride at the Egyptian Museum of Cairo 
    I do not need to speak about the ancient Egyptian deity Bastest and how up till now in Upper Egypt, the cat is called "besa" but anyone who has visited Egypt can tell you how cats enjoy their lives freely whether in houses or streets. 

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    Why does the US Bible belt support the State of Israel ??
    Why does the US right-wing support Israel as the Jewish nation when many of its followers believe that Jewish people control the world media and harass Jewish journalists online who do not have their same beliefs ??

    Why do the US right wing’s super racists who support Neo-Nazis like Steven Bannon and Sebastian Gorka support Israel and consider themselves as “Christian Zionists” ?? 
    The answer goes simply back to their understanding of their Evangelical Church’s beliefs.
    Yes, religion plays a role here just like everything else related to the Middle East and the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, unfortunately.
    A Christian Zionist parade in Jerusalem in March 2012
    Originated in the 17th century as part of the Puritan movement, Christian Zionism believes that Jews “regardless of their nationality” should return to Palestine as their homeland to restore their kingdom.

    Since the 1980s some Evangelical Churches began to adopt that theory based on the Book of the Revelation that when Jews restore their kingdom in Jerusalem, a huge battle aka Armageddon will erupt between them and their Muslim neighbors speeding up the second coming of Jesus Christ.

    Now here is a short documentary by Vice presented by Thomas Morton who went on a tour with a group of Christian Zionists to the Holy Land in Palestine explaining all this in a simple way.
    It is very important because many people ignore those simple fact whether in the West or the East.

    I remember seeing a documentary from a couple of years where a right-wing Evangelical lady was saying that every time she heard about rockets in the Middle East, she prayed it would fall over the Dome of the Rock Mosque so Muslims would be angry enough to declare war and the second coming would happen faster.

    When it comes to Islam, we do have our own version of the end of days that share some details with Christianity like the anti-Christ and the second coming of the Christ but we are not so eager for that battle like the right wing Evangelicals.

    Interestingly I read that some Shia Muslims believe the too many wars will so speed the coming or the appearance of Al-Mahdi. But yet again I do not see the same appetite for that mother of all wars among Shia just like Christian Zionists.

    A man like Steven Bannon who did not like his daughter to be in a school full of too many Jews is self-claimed Christian-Zionist. He and his brothers in the US and Europe do not want Jews in their countries just like other minorities but they want to head to Palestine to fulfill that prophecy.

    He got no problem with Neo-Nazis killing Jews in his country because he believes Jews should return to their homeland that once was there in Palestine from 2000 years ago.

    The right wing does not mind that that holy war will kill millions of Muslims and Jews as well Christians as long as it will speed up the second coming of Jesus Christ. They do not give a fuck with my due respect to Christian Palestinians or even Evangelical Palestinians !!

    I believe those facts will give you a new understanding on that strange alliance between Christian Zionists and Zionists as well why Christian Zionists support the expansion of Israel in West Bank and East Jerusalem in general.

    Not-so-shockingly the Israeli government and right wing in Israel does not have any moral problem concerning that kind of support.

    Arab Muslim strongmen find in Trump too a close friend when almost all his current administration are Islamophobic racists who have offended Muslims and Islam repeatedly.

    The Israeli government is officially a Middle Eastern government and it seems that all the Mideast governments got no problem in dealing with Trump’s racist administration.
    But just like Arab strongmen , the current Israeli government is playing fire with their alliance with the right wing and the rising Neo-Nazis whether in US or Europe.

    It is an irony when Israel and its lobbies all over the world always use the anti-Semitism charge whenever anyone open his or her mouth about Israel’s shameful record of human rights towards the Palestinians and Arabs but they befriend and form a racist alliance with true anti-Semitic Neo Nazi nationalists who truly deny holocaust.

    Anyhow I hope that video cleared the relation between the Christian belt in the United States and Zionism.  

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    A post shared by Zeinobia (@zeinobia) on

    Akhbar Al Youm press corporation is celebrating the return of its CEO and Journalist Yasser Rizk from abroad after having some surgery. Rizk is known to be among the very close journalists to the Egyptian Presidency and current President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi himself as well the army.

    The state-owned press corporation had banners with his face with the cheesiest slogans ever all over its buildings in Downtown Cairo and even hired a DJ blasting songs since early morning.

    When famous Journalist and Akhbar Al Youm founder Mostafa Amin was exonerated of espionage charges and was released from jail in 1974, he was not received like that !!!!!
    It is worth to mention that State-owned press corporations are funded from the people's taxes and they have been suffering recently huge losses. According to the head of the National Press authority Karm Gabr in October 2017, the losses of State-owned press corporations reached LE 19 billion.

    Last week, the National Press authority had a meeting with the CEO of State-owned and  Press
    Akhbar Al Youm press corporation
    Akhbar Al Youm celebrating the return of its CEO with
    banners and DJ 
     corporations and they discussed raising the prices of the daily newspapers from LE 1 to LE 2.

    The printed newspapers in Egypt are having hard times on many levels as the internet and social media are now alternative as a news source for millions of Egypt who technically lost faith in printed media due to its continuous hypocrisy.

    Needless to say, nobody wants to tackle the main reason of state-owned press corporations' failure: CORRUPTION. For three decades, those corporations suffered from the ongoing corruption that has not stopped up till now.

     Most of the State-owned Press corporations in Egypt were nationalized in the 1960s to become under the full state control during the Nasser's era. Before nationalization, they were successful corporations that made Egypt a true of journalism in the Middle East.

    Now we hear from time to time that the State wants to nationalize its press corporations and some believe it will happen soon as part of the IMF deal.

    Only time we will tell but somehow I believe the current administration won't give up one of its arms easily: State-owned Press Corporations. 

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    On Tuesday, London-Telegraph published a news article under the title “Jeremy Corbyn condemned after image emerges of him making Muslim Brotherhood Salute” which claims that the leader of Labor in the UK was photographed with a man in an old photo making the famous four-finger Rabaa sign.
    Jeremy Corbyn doing the famous Rabaa sign in 2017 "Telegraph"
    Jeremy Corbyn doing the famous Rabaa sign in 2017 "Telegraph" 
    The Telegraph says in the report that Corbyn is under fire because he was doing the Salute of the Muslim Brotherhood, the group linked to terrorism in Egypt and the Middle East.
    The news article is currently viral on main news websites and newspapers that can’t stomach the labor leader like The Sun and The Metro.
    That photo is making rounds on alt-rights and Islamophobia fanatics on social media.
    Now there is a little misinformation here that needs to be corrected.

    Jeremy Corbyn was doing Rabaa the sign which has never been a Muslim Brotherhood salute.
    The four-finger sign of Rabaa was made in 2014 by a Turkish graphic designer to commemorate the victims of Pro-Islamist president Mohamed Morsi’s sit-in's forcible dispersal in Rabaa and Nahda squares in Egypt on 13 August 2013.
    According to the different human rights organizations, whether Egyptian or international, at least 600 human beings were killed on that day.
    The numbers of the victims are still disputed but at least 600 victims have been officially confirmed by the semi-official National Council For Human Rights.

    The Rabaa sign is associated with the Muslim Brotherhood because its members began to do it in their trials, rallies and protests in Egypt and around the world to commemorate the victims.
    That sign created hysteria for the regime in Egypt and some have paid a heavy price because of doing it publicly even accidentally or even wearing its pin.

    I would have ignored this matter but unfortunately, it came at the same time as the anniversary of that sad event that we have been suffering from its consequences up until now. I do not need to post a disclaimar that I am not a Muslim Brotherhood supporter or member.

    How this sign or this image is being used in a manipulative way to hit Jeremy Corbyn and to spread Islamophobia and xenophobia is making me sick. This is not a Nazi salute and can't be compared to the Nazi salute the Alt-right in Europe and the States are trying to get it back.

    It is quite so sad to see Telegraph publishes such short news without any decent background to the true Rabaa events which the Telegraph covered extensively in 2013 with a team of excellent and brave reporters “Ruth Sherlock , Louisa Loveluck and Magdy Samaan.
    You can read a sample of their work in those nightmarish days here and there.
    I am sure that a little research using the word Rabaa in Telegraph archives would have yielded many links.
    Any decent unbiased journalist could have mentioned the Rabaa sign as well the fact that how the MB was designated as a terrorist organization by the Egyptian government and the 2014 UK government of the MB.
    The political reporter of Telegrapher should have mentioned how Corbyn had been vocal since day one concerning the Rabaa massacre criticizing the Egyptian regime's policies and leave the conclusion to the reader whether Corbyn committed another sin or not.

    I was not planning to write anything about the Rabaa massacre anniversary this year because as a dear friend has just told yesterday “There is nothing more to say” but this is too much for real.

    The Rabaa massacre and the events followed it are the worst in the history of Egypt. We are still living with their curse, the curse of blood and polarization that a divine miracle can only break.

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    There is currently a complete reshuffle that is taking place in the Media City West of Cairo where once-successful TV channels have been shut down and once-famous TV hosts are forced to stay in their homes.
    It is a reshuffle that nobody has cared to speak about or discuss or even follow. It started to happen in July during Ramadan and the World Cup.
    Then as soon as the holy month ended and the World Cup was over, that media reshuffle began to began to be louder.
    Azmy Meghad, Amr El-Lithy and Tamer Abdel Moneim
    From Left to Right: Azmy Meghad, Amr El-Llissy and Tamer Abdel Moneim
    On 27 July, Egyptian Media announced that it was restructuring ONTV Network and that it would close down ON Live, the Network News channel while launching a second sports TV channel.
    In its statement about the decision, Egyptian Media said that it launched ON Sports 2 to serve the State’s policies to support youth and sports.
    The Company also claimed that it saw it was best to close down ON Live giving no real or understandable reason behind that decision. “Its main audience from 25 January revolution supporters no longer watch it because their favorite stars like Liliane Daoud or even Amr Khafagy are not there and are not welcomed anymore”
    That decision was accompanied with many layoffs among the network’s staff.
    Unfortunately, the closure of ON Live meant for the Egyptian Media removing the channel’s archives on its YouTube channel.
    I feel sad that ON Live archives documenting the 25th January revolution have been removed from YouTube.
    Thankfully some friends at ONTV have got backup archives and hopefully, they will upload them once again when they are needed.
    ON E, the network’s main TV channel also lost several top TV hosts above them Amr Adib who signed a new contract with Saudi-owned MBC.

    Adib is going to present a new show on MBC Misr, it is unclear when but his contract allegedly made him the most expensive TV host in the Middle East.

    Newly acquired Hayat Network has got its share of the reshuffle too.
    Already suffering from huge financial troubles, there have been many layoffs in the network’s staff “105 employees were dismissed”in parallel with many management reshuffles as big names in TV industry like Osama El-Sheikh and Hala Serhan came in then left in no time.
    Big TV hosts names like Emad Adeeb came for short time and then left.
    Then in Mid July, Egyptian Media terminated the contract of famous TV host Amr El-Llissy canceling his show “One person from the people”.
     El-Llissy’s show became ridiculous hosting actors as well charlatans following his controversial interview with Tuk-tuk driver.
    Currently, Al-Hayat TV network is being restructured according to the statements of Egyptian Media.
    Moving to Al-Assema TV channel which Egyptian Media acquired too from Falcon’s Home Media, there is big drama happening there.
    I do not know when Egyptian Media acquired Al-Assema but in May 2018 I found this news saying that current businessman and former intelligence officer Yasser Selim, the CEO of Al-Hayat TV and Al-Assema Networks denied that Egyptian Media acquired them.
    During then, the general supervisor of both networks was Amr El-Llissy.

    The channel made headlines when it signed a contract with former MP and controversial Tawfik Okasha to present a talk show on its screen in June.
    In early July, Egyptian Media Company bought Al-Hayat TV Network and hired Selim as its vice-president.
    The statement did not mention Al-Assema Network but it seems that it came along the package Egyptian Media acquired from Home Media.
    Al-Assema TV is a Pro-regime channel with a populist propaganda agenda and Fox channel-alike TV hosts who support the state and hate 25 January revolution spreading polarization, bigotry and ignorance.
    That agenda would continue under the new management which brought back the one and only king of populist media former MP Tawfik Okasha who is already banned by a court order from appearing on TV.
    Tawfik Okasha with Yasser Selim "Photo: Selim's FB account"
    Tawfik Okasha with Yasser Selim "Photo: Selim's FB account" 
    Just like Al-Hayat Network, Al-Assema has been witnessing many layoffs including layoffs of their own TV host stars like Azmy Meghad, the hero of the infamous NYTimes leak.“I do not know if the word star is suitable to describe them”

    Among those TV hosts, anti-25 January revolution figure and long-time Mubarak supporter TV host Tamer Abdel Moneim who did not accept how he and his crew were dismissed from the channel in “a humiliating way” according to him.
    The actor-turned-into a TV host released last week on his official Facebook page a video attacking Egyptian Media vice chairman as well current Al-Assema manager or director “I do not know or understand his positionYasser Selim.

    In that video, Abdel Moneim recounted how he had been with “the state” and “the army” since 25 January 2011 begging the state officials to stop “Selim”.
    “ We {As the channel} were cheap while we were helping you;” Abdel Moneim said trying to remind the so-called State apparatuses how his channel was working on a low budget. I translate it literally from Arabic because that phrase went viral.

    I think that we are in front of “Freudian slip”, Tamer Abdel Moneim knows he is cheap.
    The angry TV host shared very interesting details about Yasser Selim with the public like that he was graduated from the Navy Academy and that he worked in the intelligence service for a very short time before leaving it and becoming a media tycoon.
    The Mubarak’s supporter also claimed that Selim did not know anything about media in the same way he “Abdel Moneim” did not anything about navy.
    The video was removed and Abdel Moneim’s page itself disappeared but it was shared through social media.

    Last week, Tamer Abdel Moneim reported to the authorities that his social media accounts whether on Facebook or Twitter as well his Yahoo mail. He says that his accounts were hacked following his video attacking Selim.
    Later Abdel Moneim uploaded the video again on YouTube channel.
    He also recorded another video on Tuesday attacking Selim once again accusing him of financial corruption asserting that his problem is not with the state but rather with Selim. “It seems that he had no problem with him being financially corrupted as long as he is on air !!”
    Then he managed to restore Twitter and sent a threat to Selim indirectly in a tweet that if his Facebook account and Yahoo accounts were not back then he would open “Samah’s file”. I do not know who is Samah.
    The whole affair is ridiculous but when you listen Abdel Moneim speaking about how for instance the orders come above from general x or y insisting that his problem is not with the “State” but rather with “Selim”, You will know how some TV channels are being controlled.

    The absence of those TV hosts like Tamer Abdel Moneim and other pro-state hosts means that whoever runs the show knows very well that TV hosts are longer can reach to the public.
    It is not worth to keep them on TV screen especially with the huge financial losses for the time being.
    Those faces caused huge damage to the Egyptian society with lies, ignorance and polarization.

    There is another interesting thing I noticed the public in Egypt do not really care about what is happening to those channels seriously. They lost their interest to the level that makes me wonder about the true viewership of those channels.
    I know that they will return back when they are needed but it is good not to see their ugly faces again on TV.

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  • 08/20/18--17:12: Happy Eid al-Adha everybody
  • Happy Eid al-Adha to all Muslims around the globe as well Happy Eid to all the World too from Egyptian Chronicles.
    On Monday, over 2 Million Muslim Pilgrim descended from Mount Arafat in the climax of Muslim Pilgrimage “Hajj” while Million of Muslims fasted from dawn to sunset the day praying for whatever they wanted. Thankfully the Weather was stable in the Holy Land after two days of strong wind and rains.
    Here are beautiful photos from the Holy Land.
    uslim pilgrims in the Holy Land on Arafat Day  "Reuters"
    Muslim pilgrims in the Holy Land on Arafat Day  "Reuters"
    Muslim pilgrims in the Holy Land on Arafat Day
    Muslim pilgrims in the Holy Land on Arafat Day  "Reuters"
    Indonesian Pilgrims at the Holy Land (Reuters)
    Indonesian Pilgrims at the Holy Land (Reuters)
    An old pilgrim I suppose from India descending from Mount Arafat "Reuters"
    An old pilgrim I suppose from India descending from Mount Arafat "Reuters"

    An African pilgrim at Mount Arafat asking God whatever she wants  "Reuters"
    Lady pilgrim
    A lady pilgrim at Mount Arafat praying and asking God whatever she wants. I feel she is Egyptian

    Watch this small Reuters Report show Muslim pilgrims descending from Mount Arafat on Monday in what is considered the climax of Muslim Pilgrimage.

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    Sorry for the shocking the headline but honestly I can’t think about anything better than this headline.

    On the first day of Eid Al-Adha, the hashtag “#I_support_Menna_Gobran” led the top Twitter trends with over one thousand tweets in no time in Egypt. Many Egyptian tweeps expressed their support to a young lady called Menna Gobran as well their anger and disgust for what happened to her in those two weeks because of sexual harassment.

    The story of Menna Gobran started on 15 August when she uploaded a video that she recorded earlier while waiting for her work’s bus in a busy street in New Cairo.

    That video titled “Does this happen in the Fifth Settlement too ??” showed a part of a conversation with a man who was reportedly sexually harassing her from his car.
    The video showed him coming off his Dodge pick up track “it is expensive in Egypt” asking Gobran if she wanted to drink coffee at “On the Run”Convenience store in Exxon Mobile fuel station where she was standing.

    Filming him, she said no and he said “I am so sorry” in a very bad tacky artificial accent and as he went back to his car, she filmed its license plate.
    Recently Egyptian girls film or photograph the license plates of sexual harassers in the streets to mark them and also to expose them socially on social media to fight back the sexual harassment epidemic in the country.
    Another video filmed by Menna Gobran resurfaced dated a year earlier from the same place showing another man but older who sexually harassing her explicitly telling her that he lived nearby at “Mohamed El-Habob” street or “Mohamed, the lovable or adorable”.

    The two videos were so provoking to me but what has been really causing controversy was the debate among social media users about the first video.

    Many people especially men see that there was nothing wrong in what that man had done. He asked the girl “who is a total stranger” for a coffee politely and she said no.
    They believe that that man was the victim of a girl that seeking fame.
    It did not stop there.

    Many believed that the man was not sexually harassing and that he was only asking a girl “whom he does not know” for a coffee politely. That comment went far to the level “ hey Egyptian girls, you want to live freely like the girls in the US and EU then you must accept Western Compliments and flirtations !!”

    I do not know how those people mostly from men believe that people in the West are acting like that.
    Other comments wondered about how she deserved to be harassed because of the way how she deserved to be harassed judging from her Facebook profile’s photos. “Photos of her wearing a little strapless revealing black dress as well another of her doing a split in a gym went viral as proof on that sick theory”.

    The whole affair was just getting started as we were introduced to the infamous hero of the incident, the man’s name is Mahmoud Soliman and his friends say that he is a good guy and not a harasser. He became known online and offline as "The On The Run" guy.

    He even released a video while riding another fancy expensive car “I think BMW” defending himself saying that he did not intend to harass and he acted like that freely in his community. “Using English phrases in a tacky way.
    He removed the video later.

    To defend herself, Menna Gobran recorded a video saying what happened on that day and how she was waiting for her ride to work at the meeting point in front On The Run store when that man appeared in his car and harassed her rudely.

    A post shared by @menna_gobran_ on

    At the same time, friends of the second harasser aka Mohamed El-Habob reported the video he appeared to Facebook administration and it was removed !!

    That video did not stop or even made people rethink their position and support that girl who turned out to be working in two jobs to support herself.

    We found 30-years-old Mahmoud Soliman speaking in TV and Radio shows defending himself then he traveled to Gouna and became a celebrity where people “Supposedly crème del crème of the Egyptian society” were rushing to take a photograph with him !!

    He even appeared with alleged influencer/self-claimed feminist and cinemaphotographer Salma El-Kashaf in a video repeating his invitation to drink coffee but she said that she drank espresso laughing hysterically for no reason.

    Due to online criticism, El-Kashaf closed down her social media accounts after apologizing.

    Sadly, Salma El-Kashaf herself was in hot waters last month when leaked photos she took from two years in a trip for her friend aspiring actor Rahma Hassan while semi-naked in a bikini surfaced online without their consent.
    The same people who are standing with Menna Gobran stood with El-Kashaf and Hassan because it is the right thing to do.
    The video of Soliman with Salma El-Kashaf was just the tip of an iceberg in Gouna.

    It reached the level that a travel blogger shared and sponsored her photo on Instagram with him in Gouna at some nightclub before she removed it.
    With the baddest adventurers blogger
    With the "baddest" adventurers blogger 
    His photos with the people at Bartender El-Gouna also went viral but soon enough the owner of the famous nightclub and bar had to remove them.
    The bartender in Gouna looking silly for real 
    The Snack Shack El Gouna restaurant was too happy that this guy is its customer too !!
    Mahmoud Soliman even posted a photograph with famous actor Nelly Karim who is spending the Eid vacation there.
    It made many people angry including me as Karim was the leading actor in award-winning 678 film, the first Egyptian film to deal with sexual harassment.
    For own her own defense, Nelly Karim told her friends that she did not know who that guy was and he was the one to ask her for a photo.

    6IX degrees Night Club in North Coast made a special remix for his silly pick up line. I can’t find the video anymore.
    To make things worse, the Comics and Sarcasm Facebook pages wagon jumped into making fun of the whole situation and the man as well the girl normalizing the whole thing.

    Now I am reading that Soliman was offered to appear in some famous coffee ad and some film producer talked to him to appear in some film !!

    On the other hand, Menna Gobran lost one of her two jobs after the incident.

    Some saying that she lost her jobs as a sales rep in some company because of the incident while others “including colleagues” say that she was not offered a contract because she did not achieve the required sales quota.

    Boldly, Mahmoud Soliman’s brother is also speaking to the media now saying that his family can help her to get her job back if she apologized to Mahmoud and his family for the exposure she caused !!!!

    They get a nerve for real. It turned out that Mahmoud Soliman is a son of a former top NDP official in Suez governorate who got too many question marks about his wealth.

    Unfortunately, “The On Run” guy got more exposure than that white-haired old man who changed his looks according to friends but still allegedly harassing girls and women at the same spot in New Cairo.

    Back to Menna Gobran, She posted one last video before closing down her Facebook account for now where she makes it clear that she is not a whore slamming how the people dealt with her issue

    Menna's incident opened back the sexual harassment discussion in Egypt and this time I find myself in front of hateful and disgusting misogynist in an online discussion that scares me.

    I am not speaking about the usual justification blaming the victim for what she is wearing but rather real violent misogynist.
    What is even scarier, this misogynism is notable among men from younger generations who are still in high schools and universities.

    In 2013, a UN study stated that 99.3% of women in Egypt experienced sexual harassment in a way or other.
    The newly imposed sexual harassment law with tougher penalties helped somehow to reduce that intensity epidemic but it is still a bigger social problem that should be tackled carefully in our culture.

    The incident of Menna Gobran shows how the society can turn the whole matter into a joke because the sexual harasser is a rich guy with a league of fancy cars.

    Menna is no longer the victim but rather the victimizer, the whore and the fame seeker while the On The Run guy is a society celebrity now and influencer !!!

    I am very angry and sad because any girl including myself can be in Gobran’s place and find also the society against her.
    Many girls can be in Menna's position and even worse and will not report it to the authorities for fear of social backlash especially if we are speaking about wealthy sexual perverts.

    This incident makes me believe that it is too early to speak about women empowerment in this country.

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    I am trying to keep things light in the blog as much as I can.

    Egypt’s Ministry of antiquities declared last week that the initial analysis of skeletons found in that big black sarcophagus unearthed in Alexandria in July was for two men and a woman from the Ptolemaic era.
    Gold panels were also found inside the sarcophagus.

    There are no further clues revealed publicly on who those people were and where they were buried like that.

    What is known from the initial examination of the sarcophagus that the skull of the woman indicated that she was between 20 to 25 years old and a height of around 160 to 164 cm when she died.
    The woman's skeleton or remains of the skeleton to be accurate
    The woman's skeleton or remainings of the skeleton to be accurate "Ahram Online" 
    One of the other two skeletons goes back to a man who was 35 to 39 years old and a height of 160 to 165.5 cm while the other skeleton goes back to a man who was 40 to 44 years old and a height of 179 to 184.5 cm when he died.
    The skeleton of the 35-39 years old man
    The skeleton of the 35-39 years old man "Ahram Online" 

    Interestingly, the team of researchers headed by Zeinab Hashish, director of the Department of Skeleton Remains Studies at the Antiquities Ministry found that there was 17cm-wide round cavity in the skull of the third skeleton, the older man.

    Dr. Zeinab Hashish told Ahram Online that that cavity could be the result of “a trepanation” which she explained as “the scraping or drilling of a hole in the skull, and is the oldest surgical intervention in history, found in prehistoric human remains.”
    What is even more interesting “at least for me” that form of surgery was rare in Ancient Egypt despite some skulls were found before in the country with that sort of surgery and currently are exhibited in the Kasr Al-Aini hospital museumanother local and less known museum to be on my list”.
    She added that some skulls found at the 18th dynasty tomb of Maya and Merit so we are speaking about the Modern kingdom.
     I am not an expert but I believe not all people in the old age had the privilege of having a surgery so the third man could not be a poor man !?

    More tests are done to know who those people there and their story.
    Moving to those gold panels
    The Gold plates "Ahram Online"
    The Gold plates "Ahram Online"
    The 5cmx3cm gold panels were found in the bottom of the sarcophagus.
    The secretary general of High Council of Antiquities Mostafa Waziri believes those panels may refer to military ranks !! The man is insisting that the sarcophagus got a military relation in any way.

    I am not an expert like him but those panels reminded me of the gold Ptolemaic jewelry exhibited in Egypt Museum's second floor right before King Tut's section.
    Two gold collars at the Egyptian Museum of Cairo
    I feel that the gold panels above have the same spirit

    A Gold diadem at Egyptian Museum of Cairo
    One thing for sure, that Ptomalic Jewelry was not as sophisticated as the more ancient Egyptian Jewelry
    By the way, I will seize this post and share with a very short video I filmed in 2015 for that small Greco-Roman section on the first floor of the Egyptian museum.

    The Egyptian Museum does not have only interesting and beautiful ancient Egyptian artifacts and antiquities

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    Kodak Agfa posted a photo:

    The late August full moon

    The full moon as captured from Giza , Egypt.

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    Kodak Agfa posted a photo:

    The late August full moon

    The full moon as captured from Giza , Egypt.

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