, the liberal website Elaph posted an article titled “Racism on Egyptian Soil.” The article, by Medhat Kelada, a Coptic Egyptian human rights and minority rights activist and head of the European Coptic Organizations Union, accuses Egyptian society of employing a double standard when it comes to racism. Kelada writes that Egyptians accuse Israel of being racist towards the Palestinians and of oppressing them, while Egypt itself is rife with racism, oppression and religious extremism. Noting that Egypt’s revolutions sought to bring justice, freedom and equality in Egypt, but actually failed to do so, he states that Egypt’s institutions, and especially the religious establishment, need to be “revolutionized”. He calls to create a “new religion” in Egypt that can “produce people with values of love, loyalty and devotion to the homeland and to others.”
The following are excerpts from the article:[1
Medhat Kelada (image: copts-united.com) “In our wretched region, we are not amazed to see a thief standing and preaching morality to people, or prostitutes preaching morality to virtuous women. Nor are we amazed to see a senior official cursing Israel for its racism against the Palestinians. We [Arab] peoples believe that we are the best in the world, that we possess the [best] moral values, religion and culture, and that we have a monopoly on the truth. We live in complete denial of the bleak reality and the even bleaker future.
“In our religious universities, students are [metaphorically] taught to eat human flesh, [yet] our clerics strive to outdo one another in giving speeches that announce to the world that these universities have never produced a single terrorist!… Our glorious nation is the perfect embodiment of the religious schizophrenia that typifies our entire region: everyone speaks of morality but does not implement it, speaks of nationality but does not understand it, speaks of honesty but does not know what it is, and speaks of manliness but does not actually live by this [principle]. We curse Israel’s racism towards the Palestinians, while we [Egyptians] behave in a worse and more disgraceful [manner].”
Hinting at several incidents that happened in Egypt, Kelada writes: “Have you heard [of any incident in which] 300 Israelis stood around crying ‘Allah Akbar’ while ripping the clothes off an elderly woman? Have you heard of Israel persecuting Palestinians and deporting them for ‘liking’ something on Facebook? Have you heard of [Israel] arresting four five-year-old children for making fun of ISIS? Have you heard of any Israeli torching 85 churches in two days? Have you heard of Israeli schoolchildren gathering to protest the appointment of a Palestinian principal at their school? Have you heard of any case in which the Israeli government was forced to fire the head of a local authority who had just been appointed, [just because] he was Muslim?… And there are dozens of [other] living examples of flagrant racism in Egypt’s history…
“Our people and regime suffer from a disease of hatred and lack of achievement. Hundreds of thousands [of students] imbibe this hatred at religious schools that are closed to [non-Muslims]. Every year these schools produce hundreds of thousands of half-humans who do not recognize that other people exist or that [these people] have a homeland. They live inside a single [monolithic] culture and teach millions of others [the meaning of] real racism…
“There is a direct correlation between the disease and the treatment: the more severe the disease, the more radical the treatment. [The diseased of] the Egyptian institutions [is severe enough] to warrant a revolution. [They must be] subjected to harsh and brutal criticism that might defeat the religious narcissists who mistakenly think they are the best – [when the fact is that they are] bankrupt in terms of their human, moral and national values.
“[The Egyptian] people staged two revolutions against oppression and corruption under the slogan “justice, freedom and equality” – but we have no justice, no freedom and no equality. Instead, we have injustice, racism, prisons and security apparatuses that are experts at faking charges against [regime] opponents.
“We need an internal revolution. We need nuclear bombs that can breach the walls of religious narcissism… We need self-flagellation. We need a revolution in order to end the double standard and oppression and punish those responsible [for the situation], dismiss them [from their posts] and firmly hold them to account, if necessary. We need to eradicate the obsolete thinking that has guided Egypt since 1952, which holds that ‘the cronies [of the ruler] supersede the experts,’ regardless of their mistakes, failures and ignorance, and often regardless of their racism…