I have not been “looking for” articles to post on this thread. However, as I was riding the bus I happened to see a passenger reading his newspaper with the headline below regarding women, and later saw the one about Egypt and Israel. Similarly, the Wiesenthal report on the Muslim Brotherhood, which I urge you to read (posted above), was from an email I received. In the interest of providing some eye-opening facts, I thought that it too was worth sharing.
Regarding the issue of women’s rights in Egypt, here is an article from the very-liberal Los Angeles Times that describes contemporary attitudes and behavior in Egypt regarding women. Sexual harassment and assaults are commonplace. Other forms of brutal psychological and physical oppression are not uncommon. Egypt's women face growing sexual harassment
Some women in Egypt say they suffer catcalls, groping and other sexual harassment daily. For a time it seemed that the Tahrir Square protests might point to progress, but the attack on TV reporter Lara Logan and others showed otherwise.
By Bob Drogin, Los Angeles Times
February 23, 2011
Reporting from Cairohttp://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/world/middleeast/la-fg-egypt-women-abuse-20110223,0,5655445,full.story
The article states in part:
Catcalls, fondling, indecent exposure and other forms of sexual harassment by strangers are an everyday occurrence for women on the streets of Cairo, according to human rights groups, social scientists, diplomats and interviews with Egyptians. Moreover, predatory packs have brutalized women at several public places, including a soccer stadium, in recent years, according to witnesses and local news accounts.
"There is increasing violence against women in our society," said Nehad Abul Komsan, head of the Egyptian Center for Women's Rights, a nongovernmental group that campaigns against such abuse.
Theories abound to explain the violence. Unable to find decent jobs or affordable apartments, many men don't marry until their mid-30s, social scientists say. Premarital sex is taboo, so sexual frustration is said to run abnormally high.
At the same time, analysts say, prosecutions are rare. Many families pressure wives, daughters and sisters to keep quiet after being attacked rather than invite scandal. So-called honor killings, the slaying of women by male relatives for supposedly tarnishing the family's honor, ensure their silence. Such killings are common in Egypt, according to the National Center for Social and Criminological Research.
Politics are also to blame. Civil society was shredded under Mubarak and traditional respect for women frayed as well. Then, in May 2005, government security officers were filmed tearing the clothes and pulling the hair of four women — three journalists and a lawyer — at a protest rally.
"After that, we saw dramatic change," said Komsan, of the women's rights center. "It was like a very clear message that anything was allowed. Women became an open target."
In the summer of 2006, authorities were embarrassed when women were molested on a major street in Cairo during celebrations to mark the end of Ramadan, the Islamic month of fasting. The following year, police announced that a crackdown had resulted in hundreds of arrests.
But rights lawyers said most of the men were quickly released.
In 2008, Komsan's group polled 2,020 Egyptians and 109 non-Egyptian women. The results: 83% of Egyptian women and 98% of foreign women surveyed said they had suffered sexual harassment. About half the women said they were harassed every day.
The research showed that more than two-thirds of the women reporting abuse wore traditional Muslim head scarves or robes. Some even wore a flowing body-length black burka, with veil and gloves. Fewer than a third of the women wore Western attire.
[Regarding sexual assaults and harassment during the later stage of the protests, after a brief respite] Komsan, the women's rights activist, said the assault shows that violence against women isn't just a problem of the past.
"The respite we saw at Tahrir was temporary," she said sadly. "It means a revolution doesn't end all our problems."
[For the entire article, click the link above]
Regarding the geopolitical attitudes of the protestors, some cause for concern is certainly warranted. I sure hope down the line things do not spin out of control, into a major regional (or global) war. Again, from the Los Angeles Times:Fear grows in Israel over backlash from Egypt
The idea of Iranian warships in the Suez Canal, calls for the 'conquest' of Al Aqsa mosque and suspended natural gas shipments add to anxiety over the nations' relationship.
By Edmund Sanders and Batsheva Sobelman, Los Angeles Times
February 22, 2011
Reporting from Jerusalemhttp://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/world/middleeast/la-fg-israel-iran-warships-20110222,0,3980230.story
Israel's so-called cold peace with Egypt is looking colder by the day.
Early Tuesday, Egypt reportedly permitted two Iranian warships to enter the Suez Canal for the first time since the Iranian Revolution in 1979.
During a mass prayer service Friday in Cairo's Tahrir Square, anti-Israel cleric Yusuf Qaradawi— who returned to Egypt after years in exile — called for the "conquest" of Jerusalem's Al Aqsa mosque, Islam's third-holiest site, which was captured by Israel in the 1967 Middle East War and sits atop a Jewish holy site.
As well, natural gas shipments to Israel, Jordan and Syria remain suspended after unknown assailants this month tried to bomb the pipeline route in the Sinai peninsula. An organizer of the protests that toppled Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak said last week that his group opposed resumption of exports to the "Zionist entity."
Though Israelis have taken comfort in assurances from Egypt's military that international agreements such as the 1979 Egyptian-Israeli peace treaty will be honored during its interim control of the country, opposition leaders in Egypt are talking about the need to "reassess" or "revise" the landmark pact.
Some Israelis fear they are already seeing signs of an anti-Israel backlash stemming from decades of pent-up hostility on the streets of Egypt, where many still view Israel as an enemy.
"One must bear in mind that many of the young Egyptians who took to the streets demanding democracy and prosperity are anti-American and anti-Israel," said Michael Laskier, Mideast studies professor at Bar-Ilan University. "They may decide to settle a score with the two."
Even if Egypt's next government opts to maintain the peace treaty, many Israelis are worried that a future democratic Egypt could follow the path of Turkey, a onetime Israeli ally with whom relations have soured over the last year.
[To read the full article, click link above]