Apr 11, 2011

Daunting News: Egyptian Blogger Sentenced to 3 Years Jail

Daunting news from Egypt in post-mubarakism surprised the world by jailing a blogger for three years. It shocked people because even in the Mubarak era, jailing bloggers was not as common as these last two months after Mubarak was forced to leave the power.

The only and the first case during Mubarak was Kareem Amir who was sentenced to 4 years in jail because of allegedly insulting Islam and Husni Mubarak. According to BBC, Maikel Nabil was arrested last month for blog posts where he criticized the role of the Egyptian Army during anti-government uprising. Based AFP, a military court sentenced him to three years in prison.

The Maikel Nabil case harks back to Mubarak era; it seems the Army is still remaining in its authoritarian nature and it would likely be hard to expect changes in institutions like the military. It clearly tells us that Egyptian Army does not tolerate criticism and it raises lots of unanswered questions about whether people’s efforts would finally succeed to a democratic society or not, was it worth it to sacrifice and how much power people have to change the governmental institutions. Anyway, the Maikel Nabil case is shocking and it makes the world look at post-mubarakism with doubt. Those who understand the nature of the Egyptian authoritarian regime which was headed by Husni Mubarak over the past 30 years will understand the nature of the Egyptian military and its court sentence for an internet activist and blogger of three years imprisonment.

We should not forget that it was Egyptian bloggers who were at the forefront of uprising since the beginning of uprising. I shall later write a separate piece more specifically on the role of blogging in the Egyptian revolution. It was the famous blogger, Khaled Said who was dragged from a cybercafe out into the street and beaten by police which led to his death. His death on June 12, 2010, outraged Alexandria’s residents and ultimately inspired many to stand up against Egyptian authoritarian regime which was headed by Husni Mubarak. Once again, even today, when in the case of Maikel Nabil proved that blogs continue to play an important role among traditional media, which is controlled by the state, but ultimately the uprising was caused by the bloggers who had relative freedom but not without intimidation and serious threat to their lives.


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