Fawning over the Egyptian military

Bassem Youssef
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The Brotherhood thinks it has exposed us as slaves of the military after we settled with being rotten liberals and decided to live under the rule of the coup instead of under the Brotherhood’s democratic reign.

The average Brotherhood supporter, or the Islamist, forgot that they preceded the “coup supporters” in embracing the hobby of brownnosing the military.

“O Musheer, O Musheer, you’re the Emir! O Musheer, O Musheer, we are your soldiers from Tahrir,” is one of the many chants in support of former commander of the armed forces, Mohammad Tantawi. This chant echoed across Tahrir Square in what was dubbed as “Kandahar Friday.”

“The army must be obeyed even if this temporarily contradicts with sharia (Islamic law),” is a statement made on that same Friday by an Islamist with a white beard defiled by nothing other than his bold hypocrisy.

Switching sides

Do you remember the prominent Sheikh Mohammad Hassan's prayer on Mount Arafat against those who insult the army? None of you came out to say it was a treacherous, murderous entity which was an accomplice of the Zionists then. This is something Brotherhood supporters did later in Cairo’s Rabaa al-Adawiya protests.


“The interior minister informed me that no gunfire was fired [at protesters],” Saad al-Katatni, the Islamist speaker of the people’s assembly and the man who allowed the murder of Egyptians in the Mohammad Mahmoud street clashes, said.

I still remember the many videos in which they insulted the Copts murdered in Maspero. Resorting to excessive force when dealing with protesters who weren’t affiliated to their media’s or their leadership’s agendas. The act against the Copts was justified by saying that Copts want to use foreign help to intimidate locals and want to divide the country by embarrassing the army by inciting them to kill as many Copts as possible in order to justify foreign military intervention.

They now suddenly begin to speak of “human rights,” rights they never recognized before!

A flexible rhetoric

The rhetoric of political Islam is distinguished by its flexibility.

“The treacherous army, [General] Sissi, the killer,” was one of their favorite slogans in the Rabaa protest camp. These are the same people who came up with the term “the Friday of dispute between the military and the people” in May 2011. These are the ones who raised the volume of a Quran recording from their podium in Tahrir Square in order to drown out the chants of “down with military rule.”

The rhetoric of political Islam is distinguished by its flexibility

Bassem Youssef

“We will die here” and “we came here to be martyred” are other statements made by preacher Safwat Hegazy and his comrades as part of their decision to refrain from brownnosing the military. But, after displaying his unprecedented ability to mobilize thousands every night, pushing them to die while dispersing the protest, it turned out that martyrdom was not his fate. He was finally arrested on Egypt’s borders after he had dyed his hair, shaved his beard and replaced it with a dark dyed goatee. Hegazy denied knowing anything about the violence that followed the dispersal of Brotherhood protests and said he was innocent.

“I swear if I had known there was even a plastic knife that might be used to kill a police officer, I would have been the first one to leave the protest.”

“It's all because of the Brotherhood’s failed administration.”

“I respect Sissi a lot. I don’t mind that [former Egyptian president] Mursi be tried. I swear to God, I am not even a Brotherhood [member].”

Thus we see Hegazy once again brownnoses the military after he was arrested. But this time, he adds to it a new touch of villainy.

Is this why these poor people died?

“Who did we come here for?”


“Who will we die here for?”


That is Hegazy’s and his comrades’ last scene on the Rabaa al-Adawiya podium, preparing their supporters for their inevitable fate.

If Hegazy, Mohammad el-Beltagy and others had been on the payroll of state security, general intelligence and the army, they would not have done what they have done to the Brotherhood’s supporters.

I want to believe that the Brotherhood has nothing to do with burning churches or killing soldiers in Sinai, but their threatening and inciting statements implicate them.

In the end, hundreds paid with their lives in one of the worst tragedies witnessed by the country. More than 800 protesters were killed because men like Hegazy and Beltagy laid the groundwork for such events to occur.

Claims of chemical weapons?

Now, does anyone remember the funny reports that there were chemical weapons present in Rabaa al-Adawiya, or anti- aircraft missile platforms located on rooftops in Rabaa?

Have we found these arms? No.

The interior minister stated that only 10 automatic rifles and 29 other arms were found, the weapons arsenal our fascist media spoke of was not found.

Doctors, engineers and other people, who you and I know are not terrorists, were killed. But, no one wants to hear that or sympathize with this. All that people remember is the incitement fermented in Rabaa. In the end, people who did not deserve to die, died.

Therefore, my dear Brotherhood member who hasn’t been arrested yet, you are now a member of an organization regarded as a terrorist one by other people because of the unprecedented acts carried out in Rabaa Square. Try to save some of your anger to vent it against your leaders who brownnosed the military and then placed the youths in a confrontation with it and fled leaving the latter, whose only fault believing in them, behind.

Remember that your absurd logic to gain the sympathy of the media, attempting to make them stand with you against the army, may not succeed because your leadership and your media outlets have accused them of infidelity and insulted them. How do you expect anyone to aid you after you have demonized everyone?

Your leadership, my dear, are the ones who invented the hobby of brownnosing the military thinking it would protect them from the people as they strengthen their grip on power. In the end, they wept like children when the military refused to show gratitude “and turned against them.” Your leadership left you and your friends to pay the price of confrontation with the army and the police. Know that if you survived death, you haven’t survived detention, and if you survive detention, you haven’t survived being hated by the people who once voted for you but are now not shaken even if thousands of your group die. The excuse now is “they are a terrorist organization.” Proof of that statement are Hegazy and his comrades. The more we try to convince people of the size of the tragedy that took place in Rabaa, the events of Kardasa, Aswan and Bein al-Sarayat, the more the burning of churches is brought up. All of this is the product of the rottenness of the policies your leaders and media practiced for over a year.

Cruelty begets cruelty

You were cruel to the people so the latter were cruel to you.

You spoke of those who were killed by saying: “Our [martyrs] will go to heaven but the others [who were killed] will go to hell.” But today, no one mourns your dead people and none of our media outlets act to condemn the murder of this huge number of people.

When we are asked why, the answer is: “Do you think they would have cared if we were killed in Tahrir?”

Why all this cruelty and for whose sake? Someone like Hegazy?

Is this Hegazy worth losing our humanity for, is he worth a failure to investigate events outside the Republican Guards’ headquarters, or the events in al-Manasa and Rabaa?

Dear Brotherhood youth, don’t tire yourself and accuse others of brownnosing the military and approving and loving the coup. Your leadership loved the military before us and used the coup against legitimate rule, the people and the revolution as a lifestyle. Amidst all of this, those who believed them died for nothing.

Forget about brownnosing the military and supporting the coup. Take a look at your group. Believe me, the military and the coup are the least of your troubles.

This article was first published in Egypt-based al-Shorouk on August 30, 2013.


Bassem Youssef is an Egyptian doctor, satirist, and the host of El Bernameg (The Program), a satirical news program broadcast by a private Egyptian television station. The press has compared Youssef with American comedian Jon Stewart, whose satire program The Daily Show inspired Youssef to begin his career. Despite all controversy and legal debates it has sparked, El Bernameg has been a major success. It is constantly topping the regional YouTube charts, making Youssef's YouTube channel one of the most subscribed to in Egypt.

Disclaimer: Views expressed by writers in this section are their own and do not reflect Al Arabiya English's point-of-view.
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