As readers of this blog, we hope you have enjoyed coverage of events, profiles of newsmakers, and occasional glimpses into the life of an American family in Egypt. In most of what we write we strive to provide the context, for without this only incomplete images are conveyed, which may leave lasting misimpressions.
In support of the full picture, then, we are offering a free monthly newsletter to recap recent events and offer a preview of the month ahead. Here is a preview of the introduction and conclusion:
If February was a game of waiting, March in Egypt may see the wheels begin to turn. In which direction is both a matter of debate and of further waiting.
The primary wait continues. General Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, the defense minister and head of the army, still has not declared his intention to run for president. Of less note but perhaps crucial convergence, the interim president has still not issued the presidential elections law. This is expected in a matter of days and is already twice delayed, but perhaps Sisi is waiting until it is finalized.
Also twice delayed has been the return of students to school, from kindergarten through university. Swine flu has killed a handful and is the official reason their vacation continues since mid-January. March 9 is the target return date, but speculation has been rife the closure is due to expected student protests, as the campuses had witnessed the most vibrant anti-regime demonstrations through the end of the mid-term season.
Pro-Morsi demonstrations on the whole, however, have been subsiding. To be sure they continue, but they are largely ignored by both domestic and international press. Lesser numbers may be due to fatigue, resignation, or simply the fact that thousands of their number have been arrested.
But both are involved in the fight against terrorism, which also is expected to continue in March. Having only targeted security forces, they have now switched to tourists. Also added are Egyptians abroad; Copts in Libya have been ruthlessly murdered. The general onus of accusation remains on the Muslim Brotherhood despite their denials, and judicial trials are continuing.
But just when things in Egypt appear quiet, something surprising is inevitably around the corner. If the wheels do actually begin to spin, perhaps this will be surprising enough.
If interested to receive the full newsletter tomorrow and subsequent issues around the first of each month, please click here. You can also sign up to receive a weekly summary of blog posts, and/or email delivery each time a new post is published.
Thank you for following along with our hopefully sympathetic analysis. We hope this offering will lead to better understanding and contribute positively to developments in Egypt, in however small a way.