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The PJ Tatler

Raymond Ibrahim


February 1, 2012 - 5:28 pm

How many are the lies that Egypt’s military regime has forwarded concerning its role in attacking and killing Egyptian demonstrators since it usurped power a year ago?

There were, for instance, the lies concerning the Maspero massacre, where the military slaughtered Christian Copts who were protesting the constant attacks on their churches—including by running them over with armored-vehicles.

Despite all the video evidence [apparently now removed by YouTube], the military regime insisted that it would “never, never” run over civilians; that the very idea was “impossible, impossible!” It even showed a video of a military-vehicle running amok, claiming it was hijacked by Coptic protesters (it was later revealed that an Egyptian soldier was, in fact, inside driving).

More recently, Mohamad Tantawi, the head of the military—and de facto head of Egypt—insisted that the widely circulated video of soldiers beating, stripping, and kicking a female protester is “entirely fake”—a ludicrous assertion, even if Jimmy Carter supports it.

Who is the latest victim to be scapegoated for the military’s crimes against its own citizenry? None other than the U.S.A.

Ongoing accusations that American officials were involved in killing Egyptian civilians have prompted the U.S. Embassy in Cairo to deny it through a January 27 press release:

As we have stated in previous press releases, there is absolutely no truth to reports that U.S. embassy employees or diplomats were involved in hit-and-run incidents using U.S. diplomatic vehicles, injuring or killing protestors in January 2011 in Cairo. There is also no truth to statements alleging that the keys inside U.S. diplomatic vehicles are coded and can only be used by U.S. Embassy employees. On January 28, 2011, however, a number of our U.S. Embassy vehicles were stolen. After these vehicles were stolen, we heard reports of their use in violent and criminal acts. If true, we deplore these acts and the perpetrators. Egyptian authorities have conducted an investigation that has led to the recovery of some of these stolen vehicles.

Who is behind these accusations? The military? As mentioned, it did make similar accusations against Coptic protesters, saying they hijacked and manned the military-vehicles that ran over fellow Copts at Maspero—only to be exposed as lying by Al Dalil.

While it is not altogether clear who is behind these accusations—this report indicates a lawyer of a former Egyptian official being tried, while older reports mention “communiqués”—it is, of course, the military regime that stands to gain by this latest case of blaming the other.

Raymond Ibrahim, a Middle East and Islam specialist, is author of Crucified Again: Exposing Islam’s New War on Christians (2013) and The Al Qaeda Reader (2007). His writings have appeared in a variety of media, including the Los Angeles Times, Washington Times, Jane’s Islamic Affairs Analyst, Middle East Quarterly, World Almanac of Islamism, and Chronicle of Higher Education; he has appeared on MSNBC, Fox News, C-SPAN, PBS, Reuters, Al-Jazeera, NPR, Blaze TV, and CBN. Ibrahim regularly speaks publicly, briefs governmental agencies, provides expert testimony for Islam-related lawsuits, and testifies before Congress. He is a Shillman Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center; Judith Friedman Rosen Writing Fellow, Middle East Forum; and a Media Fellow at the Hoover Institution, 2013. Ibrahim’s dual-background -- born and raised in the U.S. by Coptic Egyptian parents born and raised in the Middle East -- has provided him with unique advantages, from equal fluency in English and Arabic, to an equal understanding of the Western and Middle Eastern mindsets, positioning him to explain the latter to the former.
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