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Egypt: What's good for the goose is NOT good for the gander

When Marwa El Sherbini was shot dead in a German court Facebook users and the Egyptian blogosphere mourned her as the victim of the veil, the victim of racism, and the victim of her beliefs. But when a heap of bones wrapped up in a blanket named Ibrahim El Sayed Ibrahim was shipped back to Egypt from Libya – no one lifted a finger in his defense.

Ahmad El Badawy was among the first few to report the incident on his blog and on Facebook ; quoting Al Masry Al Youm Newspaper, Ahmad tells us his story:

فى شهر نوفمبر الماضى، كان الشاب ابراهيم حديث بعض الصحف الليبية.. ابراهيم اسقط عصابة دولية فى قبضة السفارة المصرية والامن الليبى.. العصابة ارسل قائدها من لندن مليون يورو.. كانت فى طريقها الى «الغسيل» أو لـ «عملية ارهابية».. الصحف التى نشرت تفاصيل «السقوط» لقبت ابراهيم بـ «الفرعون المصرى الذى اسقط عصابة دولية».. لكن ما حدث بعد ايام من النشر كان قاسيا.. حضر اليه ضابطان من رجال البحث الجنائى فى ليبيا.. عاتباه لأنه أخبر سفارة بلاده بشأن العصابة ولم يخطر الأمن الليبى.. الضابطان اقتاداه الى قسم شرطة هناك..
وحطما عظامه كاملة لمدة يومين متتاليين.. ووضعاه داخل «كيس بلاستيك» من الحجم الكبير.. وألقيا به فى مزرعة وسط مكان خال من المارة والسكان.. ظناً انه مات او سيموت.. وبعد ساعات قادت اليه «المصادفة» صاحب المزرعة ليكتشف الواقعة وينقله إلى المستشفى ليظل به اسبوعا داخل العناية المركزة.
Last November Ibrahim El Sayed Ibrahim was allover Libyan newspapers when he reported a money laundering operation to the Egyptian Embassy; he was hailed as the Egyptian hero who busted an international gang. Two Libyan officers summoned him to the station, blamed him for reporting the gang to the Egyptian embassy not to the Libyan police, broke every single bone in his body, dumped him in a field, and left him to die. Divine intervention saved him when the owner of the farm found him and took him to the hospital; he stayed in the intensive care unit for a week.

Accustomed to the failing reaction of the Egyptian system, Ahmad said

النظام المصرى الحقير ما اتحركش كالعادة عشان يرجع حق الشاب المصرى اللى ضيعته ليبيا … للأسف ده مش خبر جديد و من كتر تكراره جتتنا نحست و اتعودنا عليه
As usual, not a finger was raised to avenge the poor Egyptian

What really enraged him was the contrast between how Islamists reacted to Marwa El Sherbini's assault in Germany and Ibrahim El Sayed Ibrahim's assault in Libya

الأخوة اللى قلبوا الدنيا عشان يستغلوا موت الشهيدة مروة الشربينى شهيدة العنصرية و يخلوها شهيدة الطرحة عشان يروجوا لنفسهم و لعنصريتهم و يحولوا الموضوع من حادث فردى ارتكبه شخص عاطل عنصرى ( ما يختلفش كتير فى صفاته عن صفات العنصريين بدقون عندنا ) لجريمة بيطالبوا بمعاقبة ألمانيا كلها عليها ما فتحوش بقهم فى القصة دى بربع كلمة
The “brothers” who raised hell over Marwa's death and politicized it to serve their personal interests by turning her into a victim of her scarf; the “brothers” who used an individual incident by some racist lowlife, who is not any different from our very own bearded racists, to promote their own agendas – those same “brothers” did not open their mouths when it came to Ibrahim's story.

Ahmad elaborates on his point saying

أخواننا الاسلاميين و القومجية لغرض فى نفس يعقوب اعتبروا اللى حصل ده حرب ألمانية على الاسلام و على قيمنا و اذلال للمصريين
دلوقتى لما جريمة تعذيب بشعة تحصل عن طريق رجال الأمن الليبى – اللى هما ممثلين الدولة – و فى مكان احتجاز تابع للدولة و لمدة طويلة و يبقى القصد منها الانتقام و القتل و لما الراجل يرجع مصر كومة لحم مفروم و غالبا حيعيش حياته كلها عاجز و بسبب ايييه ؟ لما كل ده يحصل … هل حتخرج مظاهرات اسلامية بالألوف بتطالب بمعاقبة ليبيا زى ما خرجت مظاهرات بتطالب بمعاقبة ألمانيا ؟
هل حد حيطالب بالاعدام للضباط اللى عذبوا ابراهيم أو حتى حد حيطالب بتسليمه لمصر زى ما طالبنا بتسليم المجرم الألمانى ؟
هل حد من قطيع المليون واحد اللى عملوا جروبات لشهيدة الحجاب حيسمع أصلا عن الموضوع ده ؟
هل حد حيفتح بقه عن الماضى و الحاضر العنصرى ضد المصريين و ضد الأقليات فى الدول العربية ؟
عرفتوا فين الازدواجية ولا لسة ؟
عرفتوا مين اللى بيكيل يميت مكيال و بيتهم غيره بكدة عشان يبرأ نفسه ؟
The “brothers” and the “nationalists” promoted Marwa's assault as Germany's war on Islam and an insult to the Egyptians. But now when an Egyptian simpleton is tortured by the hands of a Libyan officer – a government representative – in an official police station for a prolonged period of time with the intention of torture and homicide, and when the guy is shipped back in a pile to spend the rest of his life incapacitated – when all of that happens, will we see thousands of Islamists demonstrating in his defense? Will any one demand that the Libyan officers be hanged the same way they called for the hanging of the German racist? Will anyone create a facebook group for him? Will anyone dare talk about cases of discrimination against Egyptians in Arab countries?
Do you now know the meaning of hypocrisy and double standards? Do you now know what's good for the goose is not good for the gander?

In A Space of my Own, Mona asks more questions:

هل سمعتم به؟
هل يعرفه أحد؟
هل هناك جروب على الفيس بوك بأسمه؟
هل خرجت مظاهرات ضد ليبيا؟
هل وقفتم أمام السفارة للاعتراض؟
هل ستتولى الدولة علاجه؟
هل ستعيد له كرامته؟
هل ستجففون دموع ابنته وهى تراه بطلا مقهورا لاحول له ولا قوة ؟
هل ستقفون مع زوجته لتطيبون خاطرها؟
أبراهيم السيد أبراهيم
هل تعرفونه عائد من بلد الطاعون فى بطانية لا يعرفه أحد –
أينتظر أن يكون خبر فى صفحة الوفيات لنعرفه جميعا؟؟
Have you heard of him?
Does anyone even know him?
Is there a facebook group in his name?
Did anyone demonstrate against Libya?
Did anyone organize a sit-in in front of the embassy?
Will the Egyptian government treat him?
Will his dignity ever be restored?
Will you dry his daughters’ tears as she watches the defeated hero?
Will you lend his wife a shoulder to cry on?
Ibrahim El Sayed Ibrahim
The anonymous guy who was sent home in a blanket
Are you waiting for his obituary in the papers to tell his story?


  • mohammad

    Why are you connecting completely 2 deferent incidents that have nothing to do with each other. One ended with the tragic death of a mother for no fault of her own that any human can relate to. And was carried in the western media including the US media. While I am not trying to say that the other case is less important, but honestly, I never heard of the incident till today. If my sources for the news are the western media, it is fair to say that you should direct your blame on the western media and not the simple Egyptians” islamists!” who also get their news from the government controlled media. Reading your profile, it was easy to sense the hate you carry for the society you were born into. The society that wanted you to be pure, respectable, disease free and with no regrets for the teenage years. You are grown now, so take a look back and be proud of your heritage

  • Dear Mohammad,

    “Global Voices aggregates, curates, and amplifies the global conversation online – shining light on places and people other media often ignore.”

    This is this site’s mission statement and Marwa Rakha was just doing her job, volunteering her time and effort to highlight conversations going on in blogs, which are often ignored by mainstream media.

    I don’t really see the point of your comment other than making a person attack on an author who only shed light on what other people have said and who has fulfilled the mandate of this site, without even stating her own opinion.

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