• January 10, 2015
  • 9 minutes read

Amr Darrag: Reconciliation Initiatives, Negotiation Rumors and Intelligence Maneuvers

Amr Darrag: Reconciliation Initiatives, Negotiation Rumors and Intelligence Maneuvers
From time to time, newspapers and other print and broadcast (and Facebook) media, report ‘news’ about reconciliation offers, initiatives and negotiations between the putschist ruling regime in Egypt on the one hand, and leaders of the Muslim Brotherhood or the Anti-Coup Pro-Legitimacy National Alliance, or others.

The latest such ‘offering’ from Egyptian media is that Dr. Mohamed Ali Bishr, Local Development Minister in the government of the legitimate President Morsi, received an offer, after his arrest and detention, for reconciliation between the coup regime and the Muslim Brotherhood which includes the release of prisoners and that he (Dr Bishr) forms a new government, amongst other details. The media, as well as some of their audience, dealt with news of this offer like irrefutable facts, despite its obvious contradictions and clearly implausible details.

For one thing, Dr. Bishr was free for more than a whole year after the coup. Why should the junta make him this offer after his arrest? If we assume this is meant to be a kind of pressure on him, isn’t the National Alliance or the Muslim Brotherhood more like the appropriate party to make the offer to? Or is this meant for Dr. Bishr personally, with no way to tell anyone about it, to look into it, and perhaps accept or reject it, and so it remains a secret initiative?!

In fact, there is no need for speculation, here. It has been confirmed that all news, reports or rumors about coup authorities starting talks with Dr. Mohamed Ali Bishr in prison are baseless, since Dr. Bishr’s family spoke with him recently (in his latest sessions with the prosecution service), and he strongly denied any kind of contact from or with authorities.

Personally, I was sure that there were no communications or initiatives of this kind at all, for the simple reason that I, as one of those reported in such ‘news’ to have participated in ‘dialogues’, know for sure that, over the course of a year and a half, there has not been one single serious attempt by the coup regime in Egypt to open dialogue of any kind or to reverse its adopted policy of repressing opposition and persecuting dissent. The putschist regime is determined to unilaterally hold absolute power over the country.

Looking at these false news reports, an observer will find they never ceased since the Rabaa and Nahda massacres or after the arrest of Dr. Bishr. These reports are invariably attributed to anonymous sources, and appear at the rate of almost once a month.

One such ‘story’ was that Al-Sisi tasked Amr Moussa with contacting Dr. Bishr. Others reported that junta authorities made an offer to Dr. Bishr to establish a political party. Others again reported communications with Sami Anan (and military leaders), which were proven untrue each time. Nevertheless, some people are still fully convinced such communications did take place.

Meanwhile, many supporters of democratic legitimacy think that the spread of such false reports about us receiving offers and initiatives of reconciliation and participation in a new cabinet somehow helps resistance of the coup. The fact is that any false news, whatever they are, amount to a rude insult to public opinion which we always address with honesty and truthfulness. Moreover, we do not want to take credit for imaginary achievements. If the coup regime’s adopted policy is to fabricate charges and spread lies, our own approach is to always be truthful in every thing we say, publish or broadcast, irrespective of whether that serves our political interests.

Furthermore, it seems coup authorities want to convey several messages through traditional intelligence methods, under pressures from different directions. They, therefore, make up and publish such false reports through various intelligence arms, in order to divide revolutionary groups, claiming that the National Alliance is making secret deals, in which it sells other revolutionaries.

The second message, aimed at foreign powers, is that supporters of democratic legitimacy are stubborn, hard to please and seek nothing but confrontation, while coup authorities (falsely) offer them various solutions and they reject all.

The last message, aimed at supporters of the coup at home, is to prove authorities are trying to find a political solution to the crisis while the ‘opposition’ does not want any solution. The truth, of course, is that coup authorities never sought any solution to stop the bloodshed in Egypt. They only want to exclude all opposition, even those who supported and helped the coup at the beginning. Facts and details of the developing situation are clear evidence of that.

By contrast, our principles and revolutionary policy impose a degree of political transparency with the people, who voted in five free and fair elections over three years, only to have their legitimate results, their popular will overturned in moments. These are the people who sacrificed and continue to sacrifice for their freedom.

Our defense of democratic and constitutional legitimacy is – first and foremost – a defense of the people’s freedom and the choices they made through the ballot-box.

Now, it is clear to many that the coup was not simply against an elected President or Government, but against the January Revolution and its demands for freedom, social justice and human dignity – the demands we consider the ultimate goal, the requirement behind which all the patriotic people unite in their legitimate struggle to gain their freedom and dignity. All those who participate in resisting the coup, whatever their social or political orientations or backgrounds, endeavor to achieve this.

In conclusion, I would like to say very clearly that no-one has a mandate to compromise on the blood of the Revolution’s martyrs or the wounded. No-one has the authority to relinquish the right to exact retribution from all those who commit crimes against the people.

No-one will give up the demands of the people to wrest their rights. Hence, to those who make up and broadcast these baseless rumors, we say: stop wasting your time… all your efforts will be in vain. As for the revolutionary men and women of Egypt, and all those who reject and resist the coup, we say: Let’s ignore these rumors and fabrications, and concentrate on our work on the ground… This is the only way to restore the rights and fundamental freedoms.

See Dr. Amr Darrag’s original (Arabic) article here: