Egyptians Stand at Two Extremes in Reaction to Terrorist Attacks in USA
By Mohammad Baali
Albawaba.com – Cairo
Egyptians reacted differently to the Tuesday series of terrorist attacks in the US. While some people in the street celebrated the catastrophe with spontaneity amid mounting anti-US, sentiments, the government and opposition parties condemned the attacks.
The presidential office issued a statement denouncing the attacks and extending “deep condolences of the Egyptian president to the American people” and offering help.
Earlier, President Mubarak had expressed his shock over the situation reiterating that what happened “was something that cannot be expected or imagined.”
President Mubarak said, “No body can expect or imagine what has happened particularly in terms of the number of casualties.”
The president pointed out that “this type of terrorism is serious and we condemn it under any circumstances.
Meanwhile, the Muslim Brotherhood denounced Wednesday the attacks expressing its “deep sorrow and pain.”
The group said in a statement, a copy of which was received by AFP that the Muslim Brothers who were “horrified by the killing, devastation and attacks on innocent civilians in the USA express their deep sorrow and pain.”
“We strongly condemn these acts which violate all human and Islamic values and announce our opposition to all attacks on people’s freedom and dignity all over the world,” added the statement.
The head of the Muslim Brotherhood block at the Egyptian parliament, Mohammed Mursy, said that his group do not approve such acts reiterating that Islam respects human beings regardless of their identity.”
Responding to a question on the delight shown among some of the public, Mursy said that people in Egypt and throughout the world feel helpless and victimized by the American foreign policy and violation of the freedom and rights of people everywhere.
“What do you expect from the Egyptian people who daily see the mutilated bodies of the Palestinian people killed by the Israeli occupation army supported by the US. What do you expect from such people who see embargo on Iraq and Libya and remember the Israeli crimes against the Egyptian POWs in Sinai,” he said.
Mursy expected that such feelings would be witnessed in the Gulf, Vietnam, Japan, Russia and all countries, which were subjected to the oppression of the US.
“The US government should contemplate such sentiments of hatred. But this does not mean that Muslim Brotherhood advocates or justifies such feelings,” the MP added.
In the opposite ideological camp, the spokesman of the Egyptian Communist Party, Ahmed Sharaf, told Albawaba.com that “the latest events are nothing but a human catastrophe according to all standards. However, they prove that the American imperialism is against all the world, including the American people itself, based on the fact that the attacks have been spurred by the brutality of the American policy which lead to fierce resistance as we have seen.”
Some Egyptians gathered in coffee shops to listen to news with delight and schadenfreude, in what an AFP analysis described as a big gap between the stance of the Egyptian government, Washington’s strategic partner, and the Egyptian public opinion, which bitterly criticizes the US policy in the Middle East -- Albawaba.com