Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Egyptian freedom of speech: Same old red lines

Egypt's media has recently come under increased pressure from the ruling military government, with the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF) utilizing Mubarak-era methods to repress freedom of speech. The past few months have seen a television station's offices raided, newspapers confiscated, and private television stations pressured to such a degree that popular talk-show hosts have been fired or have voluntarily taken a hiatus. International rights groups have condemned the crackdown on journalists and media outlets.

Self-censorship appears to have reached a level unprecedented in post-Mubarak Egypt, and certain red lines cannot be crossed. First and foremost: No direct criticism of the military—and particularly of the ruling generals.

I authored a post on this topic for Fikra Forum, a bilingual blog run by The Washington Institute for Near East Policy, a think tank in D.C. It's available in English here and Arabic here (translated by someone else, alas).

Enjoy, and please let me know what you think!

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