I’m really glad that we have a Nobel Prize winning leader in the White House who has ended the policy of supporting brutal tyrants in the Middle East who terrorize their own people.
Bahieddin Hassan, the director of the Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies, has written an open letter to Obama asking him to end his policy of supporting the Islamist tyranny of the Muslim Brotherhood.
Mr President, when I spoke with you in 2010, I asked why the US administration condemns repressive practices in Iran while remaining silent when Arab regimes engage in the same violations. Over recent months, statements by your administration have similarly failed to address violations and have even blamed protesters and victims for violence committed in the context of demonstrations. Indeed, the stances of your administration have given political cover to the current authoritarian regime in Egypt and allowed it to fearlessly implement undemocratic policies and commit numerous acts of repression.
Hassan accuses Hussein of using the Muslim Brotherhood’s own talking points in the administration’s statements supporting Morsi.
Is it a coincidence that the statements issued by your administration reflect the same political rhetoric used by the new authoritarian regime in Egypt? But when these statements come from the world’s superpower — the one most able to have a positive or negative impact on policies in Egypt and the region, not to mention the biggest donor and material supporter of the Egyptian regime for the past 35 years — they become lethal ammunition, offering political protection to perpetrators of murder, torture, brutality and rape.
Hassan describes the crimes and atrocities being perpetrated by the Obama-backed Muslim Brotherhood regime.
Twenty-three-year-old Mohamed Hussein Al-Qarni, administrator of the “Brotherhood Are Liars” Facebook page, will not be the last of these youth to die. He was shot in the neck and chest on 1 February in a side street near the Ittihadiya Presidential Palace.
On 20 November, 17-year-old Gaber “Jika” Salah, the administrator of the Together Against the Muslim Brothers Facebook page, was shot in the head with a shotgun.
In fact, while people often write their last wills in their 60s or 70s, Egyptian youth in their 20s — who would normally be planning their weddings — have been found carrying freshly penned wills while participating in protests. But these wills are not written to pass on material possessions to their relatives, as most of them own nothing of value and can only offer their lives and their aspirations to live a life of dignity in their own country. Rather, these wills dictate the details of their funerals: Which square will the procession proceed from? Which streets will it pass through? What chants should be heard?
Rape, which is recognised internationally as a weapon of war, is now used in Egypt as a political weapon to deter opponents from gathering in Tahrir Square. According to multiple testimonies in recent weeks, the assaults differ radically from the forms of sexual harassment prevalent in Egypt in previous years. According to victims and video footage, female protesters are separated from the demonstrations, taken to other locations, and raped, in what appear to be organised, previously planned attacks. The faces of the assailants show no signs of emotion or sexual excitement. The objective appears to be to break the political will of the victims through profound degradation, whether they are raped, sexually mauled, or stripped entirely of their clothes — if they manage to escape the mob. In more than one case, a knife was used to penetrate the victims’ vaginas, and multiple women underwent hysterectomies after being assaulted. In this context, we can understand the attempted rape of a 70-year-old woman known for her political affiliation as well as the sexual assault of a number of men.
Hassan isn’t asking for F16s. He’s asking Obama to stop supporting the Muslim Brotherhood regime and speaking out in support of Morsi.
Mr President, I fear that the gulf I spoke to you about three years ago is fast filling up with blood. In this context, further American statements supporting the current Egyptian regime will only lead to more Egyptians being beaten, raped, tortured, and killed. Please, ask officials with your administration to stop talking about Egypt for a while, at least until we can bury our dead, comfort their grieving families, treat the victims of rape and torture, find the disappeared, and read the wills of a new generation of young people who plan not for their weddings but for their funerals.
This is what we have come to. This is what America’s international leadership looks like under Barack Hussein Obama.