Unrest continues to unfold in Egypt. The mayhem that's broken out on the streets away from the capital in cities like Port Said, is now spilling over into the streets of Cairo. Noel King, a freelance reporter working from Cairo, explains how the current situation is calling into question the stability of the entire country.
Less than two years after the fall of Hosni Mubarak there is growing fear this week that newly elected President Mohamed Morsi is headed towards an autocratic rule. This comes after a sweeping decree by Morsi to take on new and far-reaching powers. Providing context for the decision are Noel King, freelance reporter in Cairo, Omar Khalifa, who runs Egypt’s Omedia, and P.J. Crowley, a former Department of State spokesperson and current professor at George Washington University.
Freelance reporter Noel King reports from Egypt on the prospect of a ceasefire between Israel and Hamas.
Hostilities in the Middle East escalated over the weekend as rockets targeting Tel Aviv and Jerusalem were launched by the Palestinian militant group Hamas in Gaza. Rashid Khalidi, professor of modern Arab studies at Columbia University, discusses the structure of Hamas and their economic, social, and political role in Gaza.
Last month, the Egyptian high court and military generals dissolved the country’s parliament. But on Sunday, President Morsi decreed that the legislature — dominated by his fellow Islamists — should reconvene. In short, Egypt’s new president, sworn in only a week ago, is on a collision course with the country’s judicial and military leadership.
History will be made in Egypt today and the country’s political future will be determined. Egyptians are heading to the polls to elect a new president after an extraordinary 15 months that saw revolution, violence, and upheaval. Noel King, a freelance journalist in Egypt, joins to talk about the country's youth vote.
In Egypt thousands of people have converged on Cairo's Tahrir Square to mark the first anniversary of "Friday of Rage," a key day in the popular uprising that ousted President Hosni Mubarak. A year ago Mubarak's security forces fired on protesters who streamed into the square, killing and wounding hundreds. The day ended with a collapse of Mubarak's much-hated security forces.
In what historians said was the largest demonstration by women in generations, thousands of Egyptian women marched Tuesday against their treatment by security forces. The fifth day of protests in Tahrir Square was sparked by footage of soldiers savagely beating a woman and tearing off her clothes at demonstrations over the weekend. Egypt's ruling Supreme Council of the Armed Forces expressed regret over the incident, though suggested it was isolated. On Monday, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton spoke out against the Egyptian military's treatment of women, calling it "shocking."
Egyptian security forces attempted to clear protesters from Cairo's Tahrir Square in a predawn raid on Tuesday — the second in as many days — as clashes between demonstrators and police entered their fifth day. Thirteen people have been killed in the protests since the second round of parliamentary elections began on Friday. On Sunday, the United Nations and the U.S. State Department condemned the violence. Gen. Adel Emara of Egypt's ruling military council denied using violence against the protesters on Monday.
The Muslim Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party is expected to win a decisive majority of seats in Parliament in Egypt's first democratic elections since Hosni Mubarak was forced out of power. The mainstream Islamist group claimed about 40 percent of the vote. But the ultraconservative Salafi party is expected to win around 25 percent, giving Islamist groups control of roughly 65 percent of Parliament. Liberal parties, which touched off the revolution, were too disorganized and divided to make a strong showing at the polls.
The lead up to the election has been less than promising: Sunday marked the ninth straight day of protests against military rule in Egypt. At least 41 protesters have been killed and more than 2,000 wounded. However, these events haven't stopped a record number of voters from queuing up well before polls opened this morning. This will be the country's first parliamentary election since former President Hosni Mubarak was ousted.
Demonstrations erupted in Cairo on Monday night as activists demanded the release of a jailed blogger and the end to military trials for civilians. The blogger, Alaa Abd El Fattah, criticized the Egyptian military's response to an October 9 protest that ended in violence and the death of 28 protesters, most of them Coptic Christians. He also referred to the army controlling Egypt as "Mubarak's military." Fattah is being accused of inciting violence.
The manhunt for Moammar Gadhafi continues and Libyan rebels continue to clash with loyalist forces. Libyan rebels are offering a $2 million bounty for Moammar Gadhafi, as they move to take full control of Libya. But remember why the US and NATO went into Libya. The mandate was humanitarian; the goal to protect Libyan civilians. They couldn't have reached this point, without aid from the U.S. and NATO, whose forces were originally in Libya for humanitarian purposes, to protect civilians. Is their situation the same now?
Over the weekend, Libyan rebel forces took key positions near the capital of Tripoli, and last night they flooded into the capital and battled with loyalists to Col. Moammar Gadhafi. Rebels captured two of Gadhafi's sons, including Seif al-Islam, the assumed heir-apparent, while civilians celebrated in the streets over what may be the end of Gadhafi's 42 years in power of Libya. Meanwhile, in the United States, candidates who hope to capture the Republican presidential nomination continue to duke it out over who would lead the country best, and President Obama is preparing his jobs plan, which he'll unveil in a speech next month.
Yesterday the Obama administration called for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to step down. It was the administration's strongest statement since the Syrian uprising began. "For the sake of the Syrian people, the time has come for [Assad] to step aside and leave this transition to Syrians themselves," Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said. The U.S. is united with Turkey, Saudi Arabia and a host of European nations in pushing Assad to step down, and that international coalition may prove strong enough in the long term to force the Syrian leader out. How loudly will the American government's words echo, as Assad struggles to hold on to power?
Stocks plummeted yesterday, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average falling more than 400 points and Standard & Poor’s 500-stock index closing down 53.24 points, at 1,140.65. The day was just the latest in a series of wild swings in financial markets in recent weeks. What's causing the severe fluctuations? We're taking a look at how "robot traders" — computers that are programmed to automatically buy or sell stocks based on a set of criteria — affect the markets. Could market woes be tied not to human worry, but to machine worry?
In India, a 74-year-old activist is on a hunger strike to protest government corruption. The activist, Anna Hazare, has drawn comparisons to Mohandas Ghandi. He is currently in jail, but may be leaving later today after more than 10,000 people marched peacefully through New Delhi yesterday, rallying on his behalf. Could this be the start of an Arab Spring in India?
The twelve-member joint Congressional "super committee" that has been tasked with creating a deficit reduction plan that both Republicans and Democrats can stomach — by Thanksgiving, no less — has a tough path ahead. It's a goal that seemed impossible for President Obama and Congressional leaders to achieve, just last month. Can the committee succeed where others failed?
With a state motto like "Live Free or Die," you might expect that New Hampshire has a fair number of independent voters. That’s what prompted Anna Sale — reporter for It’s a Free Country, the politics website of our co-producer WNYC — to report from there. Sale has been on the road speaking to independent voters across the country, in an attempt to gauge which direction this large and crucial demographic is leaning as we approach the 2012 presidential election. She’s spent the last few days in New Hampshire, focusing on how Republicans and Democrats are attempting to capture the independent vote there.
When the bombing and shooting first broke out in Norway last Friday, no one knew the source of the attacks, but a small group of anti-Islamic bloggers in the U.S. were quick to blame Muslim extremists. In the end, a manifesto that Anders Behring Breivik — the man accused of carrying out the killing spree — posted online confirmed that he was not Muslim, but the opposite: an anti-Muslim extremist.