The PJ Tatler

The Blame Game in Egypt

Egyptians are blaming their military leaders, not themselves or the perpetrators, for the horrifying eruption of fan violence at a Port Said soccer match that resulted in 79 dead and some 1000 injured. This is consistent with contemporary Egyptian culture where conspiracy theories dominate. Some even think this entire episode was a setup. Normally, Israel is blame for practically everything in the Egyptian mindset, but the hated Jewish state has not figured prominently on the soccer deaths – so far.

Nevertheless, as a sidelight, when doing some reporting on the once-optimistic-now-brutally-reactionary Arab Spring, I talked on the phone with the blogger Sandmonkey in Cairo. He told me he agreed Egyptian attitudes toward Israel were largely cuckoo, but urged me not to attach his name to such a “heretical” thought in print. He would lose his usefulness to the Arab Spring.

I kept that secret for a year or so, but the Arab Spring is now a hideous joke, no more than a conduit for religious fanatics, so silence seems pointless. Note to Sandmonkey: By being silent about the truth, you helped, in your small manner, to make it that way.