Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

The current Egyptian State of Affairs is an anachronism more befitting of the Stone Age.

Ever since the assassination of Anwar Elsadat, the so called “emergency law” has been enforced, for a period of over 30 years. The law has been continuously extended every three years since 1981. Under the law, police powers are unobstructed, constitutional rights non-existent and censorship is legalized. It is the oppressive foot over the neck of the people.

Most recently, in a bid to win favor with its US ally, Egypt has renewed the emergency law for a further 2 years, however adding stipulations that it was only to be used to combat terror and drug trafficking.

Examining the clauses:

1) Terroristic acts were thought to be confined to weapons training, manufacturing improvised explosive devices. However, suspects arrested in JFK airport and accused of terrorism had supposedly trained for terrorism by working out and playing violent video-games, and watching the news.

Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

2) The police, the elite charged with protecting the innocent and civil rights, are given carte blanche to run rampant.

On a trip to Sharm-elsheikh, I ran into one of the elite with a few of his friends having a well deserved R&R at the resorts near the Red Sea. He regaled me with heroic stories of chasing down gang members, druggies and murderers.

Despite having to uphold a certain dignity being a member of the police force, this man was receiving dirty looks from the Russians for indulging in Vodka in the early morning. He also mentioned how he would receive his “share” of contraband confiscated from travelers whilst en-route to Sharm-elsheikh and being stopped at security checkpoints.

Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

As it is painfully obvious to see, the umbrellas of drug trade and terrorism encompass far more than their name-sake. They, like freedom, are open to interpretation.

The police are free to “plant” any evidence they so wish on anyone; that is a fact. A fact I have been informed of by several people, where the police would openly declare their ability to pin any form of crime on a person, preceded by the officer pulling out a bag of contraband and using it as leverage.

The recent murder of an Egyptian youth at the hands of the authorities, whereby he was brutally beaten to death before onlookers, has stirred public outcry.

The police claim he swallowed a bag of contraband that the officers were searching for. A second autopsy has been scheduled.

Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?
Who is watching the watchers?

August 2011 ( View complete archive page )

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