The Week in Egypt [November 24, 2014]

Catch up on the latest out of Egypt every week, with analysis, news updates, photos, videos, and more.

Quote of the Week

“Most importantly, Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis could become a launching pad for jihadists from all over the world who are not able to join IS, given the difficulty of reaching Syria and Iraq.” – Moustafa Bassiouni expressed his concerns after Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis pledged alliance with the Islamic State. [Al-Monitor]

Egypt in the News







“The Future of Big Business in the New Egypt” | Amr Adly, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace

“Big business controls industries that are key to any recovery. The military may replace big businesses in the immediate term, but longer-term stabilization depends on the resumption of activities by large private enterprises. Big business still controls important sectors of the economy—including manufacturing, tourism, telecommunications, commerce, and housing—that are essential to any revival in investment or employment.”

“Foreign capital will return to the private sector. Private foreign investors will ultimately prefer working not through the military but through big business, as they have in the past.”

“Interactions between business and the state may be changed. The military’s entry into new sectors could lead to a redrawing of the lines of interaction between the military and big business, especially in areas such as construction and access to land. Faced with higher tax bills and reduced subsidies, business may also be forced to depend less on government.”

“The Egypt-Gaza Buffer Zone: More Harm than Good for Sinai Security” | Zack Gold, The Institute for National Security Studies

“A buffer zone is likely to further damage the smuggling industry: any tunnel will have to be at least 1000 meters longer, and once discovered and destroyed would take more time to restore. However, what Egypt gains in further halting militant infiltration from Gaza would be wasted if the policy feeds the insurgency in Sinai itself. According to a press release from the Egyptian embassy in Washington, Sisi “stressed the need to provide the residents of this area time to evacuate and relocate,” although witnesses on the ground have described the expediency with which they were displaced.”

“Sinai’s population is already marginalized from Egyptian society, and by driving residents from their land the Egyptian military risks driving them into the waiting arms of Ansar Bayt al-Maqdis and other violent anti-state groups.”

“For Gaza’s population, the buffer zone may signal further isolation, but the trade in smuggled consumer goods has already been halted to the point that this latest effort should have limited impact on the Strip’s already dire humanitarian situation. Israeli policymakers, therefore, need not worry about serious backlash from the Palestinian enclave, and indeed for almost a decade successive Israeli governments have encouraged more Egyptian activity on the Gaza border. However, Israel should be concerned that Egypt’s move could prolong instability in Sinai, which continues to bleed across the border.”

On Twitter: Doctor Acquitted in Egypt’s First FGM Trial

An Egyptian court on Thursday acquitted a father and a doctor over performing a female circumcision operation that killed a teenage girl, Sohair al-Batea, in the Nile Delta city of Mansoura last year.

Video of the Week: Sisi Considering Pardon for Al Jazeera Journalists

Cartoon of the Week


Source: Shorouk

On the man’s board: The power of politics
On the barbell: Ninety million tonnes