Visual propaganda in the #NGOCrackdown case

in «Politics & Human Rights» by mostafa

Warning! This post is very old and may contain information or opinions that are no longer valid or embarrassing.

Whenever Ahram newspaper asks their graphics team to photoshop anything a scandal erupts. Remember the Mubarak in the lead photo?


This time the content of the photo wasn't the source of the scandal but the entire case and how the government and media insisted that it's a matter of sovereignty. Up to the extent that prime minister Kamal El-Ganzoury said Egypt won't kneel to the US.

Background (skip this if you know the case):
The government started a witch-hunt against foreign funded NGOs. But decided to pick on the easier target, one that will arouse minor criticism locally. US NGOs working for 'democracy promotion' such NDI, IRI and freedom house. The legal status of these NGOs is under question but that's a side issue, although the basis of the case against them, because they have been operating since 2004.

Ever since the revolution started state owned media launched a smear campaign against political activists and groups such April 6 that they were foreign funded and trained. That invisible foreign hands are responsible for this chaos. After Mubarak stepped down, SCAF took that line and continued in the same direction using state media and their stupid Facebook communiqué.

This was taken further, perhaps for local consumption and to add legitimacy to their foreign hands claims or part of a long term campaign to crackdown on NGOs, specially those working in human rights. So, 43 NGO workers were banned from travelling, including American citizens and referred to trial. After pressure from the White House, the travel ban was lifted for the foreigners and they left. Disgracing the government and judiciary.

Ahram used several odd stock photos and photoshop creations to add to the sensationalism. Here are some example I managed to keep.






There was one that was particularly infuriating that showed a huge protest in Tahrir during one of the million man marches with dollars on the side.

So here is my take on Egypt won't kneel comment.

photo of Hormoheb kneeling to the statue of liberty