17 February, 2009

"The Last Bastion of Freedom and Justice in Egypt has Fallen"

The elections for the Judges Club, held on Friday, was surrounded by controversy and accusations of government intervention. Daily News reports that proponents of the "independence" faction fear that the result "will effectively hinder its role as a bulwark for judicial independence and citizen rights." And in a report in today's el-Badeel, Ahmed Mekky, Deputy Chief Justice of the Egyptian Court of Cassation, accuse the government of trying to eliminate the independence faction ahead of the upcoming parliamentary and presidential elections (2010 and 2011, respectively), to avoid a repetition of the revelations of irregularities and forgery that was made by judges in 2005.

But the most damning verdict was passed by a reader commenting on the el-Badeel article on-line, who caught my attention with these words (roughly translated): "The last bastion of freedom and justice in Egypt has fallen. The nation is now the property of the military, and Egypt turned into a police state of the first degree. We will soon hear about military trials for civilian politicians opposing the government [wait - isn't this already happening?] ... Bye bye freedoms, bye bye Egypt."

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