Trump, Clinton, and Egypt

Trump, Clinton, and Egypt

We are often asked what Egyptians think about current American politics and the presidential race. Our answer tends to fall into these categories: Many hate Hillary Clinton due to her support for the Brotherhood. Many think it doesn’t matter because US foreign policy never changes. Many see in Donald Trump an American version of Middle … Continue reading

Friday Prayers for Egypt: Normalizing Ties?

Friday Prayers for Egypt: Normalizing Ties?

God, You desire good relations. But politics is often about particular interests, and sometimes relationships go sour. Sometimes they are damaged beyond repair. Perhaps in some cases, an outright break is necessary and best. So with Israel, Turkey, and the Muslim Brotherhood, God, help Egypt arrange her affairs properly. Feelers have gone out that perhaps … Continue reading

Egyptian Copts: Continuing Violence and Conditional Hope

Egyptian Copts: Continuing Violence and Conditional Hope

Egyptian Christians continue to offer overwhelming support to the current president. Following removal of the Muslim Brotherhood from power, Copts are inclined to overlook economic challenges and human rights infringements as they with many Egyptians appreciate Egypt’s relative regional stability. Public rhetoric esteems Christians as equal citizens as the president challenges Muslims to remove sectarianism … Continue reading

To be a Muslim’s Eyes

To be a Muslim’s Eyes

From al-Monitor, a unique account of a Palestinian Christian in Gaza who daily accompanies his blind Muslim friend to the mosque: “Growing up, Hatem would always perform prayers at the mosque, but after the incident five years ago, he was no longer able to do so because there was no one available to guide him … Continue reading

Friday Prayers for Egypt: Exam Leaks

Friday Prayers for Egypt: Exam Leaks

God, Small scale protests have erupted again, this time over education. Students are angry over the leaking of answers to the national high school exam, as well as the threatened postponement until tests can be reformulated. Both alleged leakers and demonstrators have been arrested, as several call for the resignation of the education minister. The … Continue reading

Ramadan Balderdash

Ramadan Balderdash

In Egypt, Ramadan is not only highly anticipated as month of spiritual fasting, but also as a month of television entertainment. It is estimated that 80% of original content is released during the month, broadcast after sunset when family gathers to eat, socialize, and watch the hottest stars in action. One of my favorite party … Continue reading

Egypt and the Agony of Ongoing Tragedy

Egypt and the Agony of Ongoing Tragedy

This article was first published at Providence Magazine: 6am in Cairo, May 19, I woke to the news of another disaster. EgyptAir flight 804 fell out of the sky en route from Paris, France. The world wondered terrorism. Egypt pondered the same, but the cause almost didn’t matter. With many Egyptians I exhaled deeply, sighing … Continue reading

The Mural in the Garbage: An Artist’s ‘Perception’ of Cairo’s Coptic Slum

The Mural in the Garbage: An Artist’s ‘Perception’ of Cairo’s Coptic Slum

This article was first published at The Media Project: In 2013 the French-Tunisian eL Seed became the first Arab artist to collaborate with fashion mogul Louis Vuitton. His unique “caligraffiti” style emblazoned their classic Foulards d’Artiste monogram scarf, and embellished their iconic Alzer luggage case. Blending traditional Arabic calligraphy with street-style urban graffiti, his reputation … Continue reading

Friday Prayers for Egypt: Fire in Cairo

Friday Prayers for Egypt: Fire in Cairo

God, Once before, Cairo burned. With fire true and abstract, she is threatened again. The incidents are curious, God, and in the sequential diversity conspiracy spins. Familiar foes blame each other, while official authorities blame faulty wiring. Settle the cause of every and all, holding accountable for each liability. Connect the dots or prove them … Continue reading

Muslims are not Islam is not Muslims

Muslims are not Islam is not Muslims

From an article at the Zwemer Center, written by a philosopher fed up with popular coverage of Muslim issues: One philosophical distinction that may help navigate this discussion is between essentialism and nominalism. Don’t stop reading, he makes it simpler, distinguishing between Islamic religiosity and Muslim religiosity. Ok, that still sounds complicated, but here is … Continue reading

Friday Prayers for Egypt: Journalists vs Police

Friday Prayers for Egypt: Journalists vs Police

God, So much in Egypt is zero sum. Nullify correctly, or change the equation. During recent protests over the Red Sea islands, several journalists were arrested. Many were quickly released. But when police entered the syndicate to arrest two journalists staging a sit-in, the majority believe a line was crossed. Police had a warrant, but … Continue reading

Inshallah for the Foreigner

Inshallah for the Foreigner

The Arabic literally translates as ‘if God wills’, but it conveys a whole lot more – usually to the foreigner’s frustration. In this article for the New York Times, Wajahat Ali explains: It’s similar to how the British use the word “brilliant” to both praise and passive-aggressively deride everything and everyone. It transports both the … Continue reading