Contain this

I would like to think that the internal contradictions of Islamism will bring down regimes such as that of Egypt’s Mohammed Morsi. Today the New York Times reports on Egypt’s shortages of food and fuel, a story that David Goldman has cornered for quite a while. If only we were to impose appropriate conditions in return for the financial aid that we provide — and if only we sought to achieve pursue the goal — the Islamists might join the Soviet Communists on the ash heap of history, at least in Egypt.

Tbe evil nature of the Islamist regime is on display for all with eyes to see. In a story running inside the Times, Kareen Fahim and Mayy el Sheikh report on the trials of an Egyptian satirist (photo above) at the hands of Egypt’s public prosecutor:

Egypt’s public prosecutor on Saturday ordered the arrest of a popular television satirist on charges that included insulting President Mohamed Morsi and denigrating Islam, the state news agency reported, a move that amplified criticisms that the Islamist government is moving aggressively to stifle freedom of expression.

The satirist, Bassem Youssef, who hosts a widely watched show modeled on “The Daily Show,” has been the subject of numerous legal complaints filed by Islamist lawyers and citizens who took umbrage at Mr. Youssef’s skewering of Egypt’s political class, including Mr. Morsi, his loyalists and the opposition.

But the arrest warrant seemed to represent a sharp escalation of the campaign against Mr. Youssef, with the public prosecutor appointed by Mr. Morsi lending official credence to the complaints. In the nine months since Mr. Morsi took office, his government and the Muslim Brotherhood have endured withering and frequently strident criticism from Egypt’s private news media outlets. Mr. Morsi has been accused of responding with measures that recall the previous authoritarian leaders, including prosecuting critics, confiscating newspapers and placing sympathetic journalists in state news media organs.

Last week, the public prosecutor, Talaat Ibrahim, ordered the arrest of five anti-Islamist activists on charges that they had used social media to incite violence against the Muslim Brotherhood.

Shortly after the warrant was announced Saturday, Mr. Youssef confirmed on Twitter that he had been summoned and said he intended to visit the prosecutor’s office on Sunday. “Unless they were so kind as to send a police wagon to pick me up today, and save me the transportation,” he added.

It was not immediately clear which episodes of Mr. Youssef’s program, which is watched by millions of people on television or on the Internet, had prompted the warrant. Al Ahram, the state newspaper, said Saturday that prosecutors had considered the testimony of 28 complainants and had examined four episodes.

One complainant accused Mr. Youssef of denigrating Islam and disturbing security, and demanded that the state take “deterrent measures against him so that others with weak resolve wouldn’t dare to insult Islam.” The unnamed critic also accused the television host of insulting the president, including by “diminishing his stature domestically and abroad.”

At last word, according to the Times, Yousef has posted bail.


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