Egyptian Military Blames Violence on Protesters (Video)


Clashes between soldiers and protesters calling for the end of military rule by a council of generals have entered their third day with at least 12 dead and many hundreds detained. Among those killed is a 19-year-old; a 15-year-old, Ahmed Saad, is described as being in critical condition after receiving a gunshot wound. The SCAF has sought to pin the recent violence — which has marred Egypt’s first democratic elections, held on November 28 and December 12 — on the protesters. Retired general Abdel Moneim Kato, an army adviser, spoke harshly in the daily al-Sharouk about the burning of a government archive building:

“What is your feeling when you see Egypt and its history burn in front of you?… ”Yet you worry about a vagrant who should be burnt in Hitler’s incinerators.”

Former UN nuclear watchdog chief and possible presidential candidate Mohamed ElBaradei returned that Kato’s words showed “a deranged and criminal state of mind.” The Arabic Network for Human Rights Information also said Kato’s words incited “hatred and [justified] violence against citizens.”

Women Rally Against Abuse

Thousands of women took to the streets of downtown Cairo on Tuesday evening to protest the violence against female demonstrators by the military in recent clashes in Tahrir Square. The New York Times described the march as possibly the “biggest women’s demonstration in Egypt’s history” and indeed “the most significant since a 1919 march led by pioneering Egyptian feminist Huda Shaarawi to protest British rule.” Many protesters held up photographs of a female protester who was beaten, dragged on the ground and stripped to her bra by soldiers, an incident that has outraged Egyptians and horrified the world.

Women of all ages, some of whom had never joined a protest before, marched towards the headquarters of the journalists union. Two lines of hundreds of men formed on either side of the women. The crowd called on others to join with chants of “come down, come down,” echoing a phrase used during the massive protests earlier this year that brought down former President Hosni Mubarak.

Flyers proclaimed “Liars, stop the violence” and depicted a hand reaching out from a military uniform and groping a frowning woman, says the Guardian.

Protesters proclaimed the head of the ruling military council, the Surpreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF), Field Marshal Tantawi, a “coward.”

Samea Saleh, a woman wearing the niqab (veil), said that the military was attempting to take away the Egyptian people’s dignity.

Referring to the images of the young woman lying half-naked on the street – her cloak ripped in two – Saleh said such images showed nothing had improved under military rule.

“What they did to that woman was the ultimate insult. Why do they think we wear these clothes? To have them stripped off us on the street? I’m here as part of the revolution, which did not end in February,” she said.

The image of the woman beaten and stripped by soldiers in Tahrir was rapidly circulated around the world via the internet, with activists using the #BlueBra tag on Twitter. But as “relatively few Egyptians have Internet access or watch independent satellite television news,” the image was not seen by many Egyptians until Tuesday, when one of the generals on the SCAF, General Adel Emara, said on state television that the incident was an isolated occurrence and that it was being investigated.

As the New York Times reports, the general’s answer to a female journalist asking for an apology to women about their treatment in the recent protests was not encouraging:

“I demand that the military council gives serious and important consideration to the issue of women, or the next revolution will be a women revolution for real,” [the female journalist] warned. The general, however, first tried to interrupt her to announce that the military had learned of a new plan to attack the Parliament — already behind heavy barriers — and then brushed off her request.

Many Egyptian women said later that they were outraged by the general’s handling of the question and nonchalance about the attack.

As Al Jazeera reports, many women who have been arrested have said they were beaten and molested while in in custody.

Hillary Clinton Condemns Violence Against Egyptian Women
Speaking at Georgetown University in Washington, DC, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton sharply criticized the violence against women by the Egyptian police and soldiers:

“This systematic degradation of Egyptian women dishonors the revolution, disgraces the state and its uniform and is not worthy of a great people…..Women are being beaten and humiliated in the same streets where they risked their lives for the revolution only a few short months ago.”

Clinton called the recent violence in Egypt “shocking.”

While women comprised about 30 percent of the candidates in the recent parliamentary elections, with most running as independents rather than on a party ticket, “not a single woman has been directly elected in Egypt’s first round of elections for the lower house of Parliament,” according to Ms Magazine. Only 3 or 4 seem likely to gain seats in January in the 498-member lower house of parliament. How “revolutionary” can Egypt’s new Parliament be, if not even 1 percent of its members are women?


Previous Care2 Coverage

Protester Dragged By Headscarf in Tahrir: 3 Days of Violence

Arab Spring Anniversary: Remembering Mohamed Bouazizi

Egypt’s Military Clashes With Protesters


Photo by lilianwagdy

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Michael C.
Michael C.3 years ago

Those silly Arab rabbits...thats the Ol' Geo Bush defense, after all, as he stated on may occasions, "they tried to kill my Dad."

Sure, the two of them are so estranged, I don't see that the two could be left in the same room for five minutes. One or the other would be pissing down the other legs and telling to other that it's raining. Repugnants are like that and all the while, the devil is over there in the corner, just laughing.

Michael C.
Michael C.3 years ago

Those silly rabbits...thats the Ol' Geo Bush defense, after all, he tried to Dad. Sure, the two of them are so estranged, I don't that the two could be left in the same room for five minutes. One or the other would be pissing down the other legs and telling to other that it's raining.

Marie W.
Marie W.3 years ago

Sorry, I do not think Egypt (or its women) will get real democracy as long as Islam is there.

Shirley M.
Shirley M.3 years ago

Of course the military blame the protesters; this is a surprise? Looks like we celebrated a little too soon for Egypt's entry into democracy. But then, when democracy is also under threat in the 'free world', what can we expect?

For those of us who try and live the philosophy of 'freedom of choice' and the 'do as you would be done by' principle, there's still a long way to go and no place for complacency. We must support the people who embrace those principles within our OWN countries so we can walk the talk!

valda p.
valda p.3 years ago

The conviction of Elizabeth Sadaditch -Wolff for stating a known truth is such a misscariage of justice,how can anyone be convicted for telling the truth?why and how do these people of Islam -Muslims influence and purvert the verdicts of courts of Law?what recourse does a person have if the Law is showing defference to a particular group of society,the -Law is imparial to any outside influences or it is corrupt.'
If the freedom of speech is taken away,then -dumb and -silent we may be led,like -sheep -to the slaughter-George Washington.

Shanie Mangulins
Shanie Mangulin3 years ago

Women in Egypt are targeted for the same reasons that they are being targeted in other Islamic states - they are disaposeable! Because these bullies really believe that NO ONE will champion these women. The men who dared to take a stand to protect the protestors should be honored...the blessings of Allah upon them. They are the true believers, not these political bullies - Field Marshal Mohamed Hussein Tantawi, "Come down, come down..."

Robert O.
Robert O.3 years ago

I agree with you Holly L., the protestors are being targeted just because they dare to make their voices heard and speak out against a cruel, autocratic, oppressive regime. This is just a form of victim blaming by those in power that can't and won't own up to their hatred and cruelty. Thanks Kristina.

Brenda Towers
Brenda Towers3 years ago

Thanks for sharing.

Dan Cooper
Dan Cooper3 years ago


Sad day for free speech. If it can happen in Austria, it can happen here.

But Newt is a fool if he thinks that curtailing free speech will stop terrorism. It'll do here what it's doing in Eurabia: keep those who would point out the radicals or extremists quiet, while the radicals and extremists have free reign to do or say as they please.

Dan Cooper
Dan Cooper3 years ago

"Former House speaker, Newt Gingrich, caused a stir by proposing that free speech may have to be curtailed in order to fight terrorism."

Well, the way it's being "curtailed", is Hillary C just was meeting with the OIC about resolution 16/18. This will basically mean you can't mention anything about a Mohammedan that they don't like you to say. Human rights violations? Shhhh, don't say the "M-word"! Terrorist attack complete with screams of "allahu akhbar!"? Shhh, don't say the "M-word". Interestingly, it does not propose similar protections for followers of other religions, just Mohammedans.

This is how a soldier can talk openly about how he supports jihad, then gun down fellow soldiers, yes, while screaming "allahu akhbar!" as he does it, and our own president says it's not a terrorist act, but "workplace violence". I'm pretty sure dying when a plane hits your building is now "workplace violence" too.

We're already doing this, and it'll only get worse. If you don't believe it, look at Elisabeth Sabaditch-Wolff in Austria. She said a known true fact about Mohammed. The courts didn't care that what she said was true. She was convicted because it bothered Mohammedans that she pointed out that he married a 6 year old when he was 51, and consummated it at her age 9 and his 54. Mohammedan sources support that as true. The guilty verdict (guilty of troubling Mohammedans' oh-so-delicate sensitivities, I guess) was upheld on appeal.

Sad day for free speech. If