February 3, 2011

Current News Re- Egypt:

A few sources (in addition to others you may be following):

  1. A more stable Al Jazeera live stream.

  2. Al Jazeera live blog.

  3. A thread aggregating posts and tweets from inside Egypt (this will probably be replaced by others on succeeding days, but if you're checking on a date after the date of this post, you can find links to new threads by looking near the bottom of the thread or searching DU for posts by the author of the original post that began this thread).
  4. Another thread aggregating recent news (same caveat applies).

(Click on the images for larger versions.) Of great concern now is that, during the last day, there has been a concerted campaign of attacks on and arrests of journalists. The fear is that Egyptian authorities are planning something especially bloody that they don't want the world to see. Hundreds of thousands of pro-democracy protesters are expected to take to the streets for tomorrow's "March for Departure."

Meanwhile, the Deputy Director of the state-controlled Egyptian tv, Shahira Amin, has resigned: "I quit my job because I don't want to be part of the state propaganda regime, I am with the people. I feel liberated and relieved. I have quit my job and joined the people in Tahrir Square."

UPDATE: At least ten protesters are confirmed dead, over a thousand wounded, and per Amnesty International, some 1500 are being detained by Egyptian authorities. FURTHER UPDATE: As of Feb. 6, per Al Jazeera, Egyptian authorities report 11 protesters have been killed; the United Nations reports over 300 and estimates thousands injured.

I'm in awe of the pro-democracy Egyptians – their determination to demonstrate peacefully, their level-headedness and ingenuity, as well as their great courage. To the families of those killed, and to the many injured, and to all who persevere, I can't help recalling the speech Shakespeare wrote for his Henry V (Act IV, scene ii, Moby ed.):
What’s he that wishes so? [wishing they had more men from their homeland to help in their next battle, in which they'd be terribly outnumbered]
My cousin Westmoreland? No, my fair cousin;
If we are marked to die, we are enough
To do our country loss [i.e., if we’re to die, better that no more than we be lost]; and if to live,
The fewer men, the greater share of honour.
God’s will! I pray thee, wish not one man more.
By Jove, I am not covetous for gold,
Nor care I who doth feed upon my cost;
It yearns me not if men my garments wear [“yearns”: here, grieves];
Such outward things dwell not in my desires;
But if it be a sin to covet honour,
I am the most offending soul alive.
No, faith, my coz [cousin], wish not a man from England.
God’s peace! I would not lose so great an honour
As one man more, methinks, would share from me
For the best hope I have. O, do not wish one more!
Rather proclaim it, Westmoreland, through my host,
That he which hath no stomach to this fight,
Let him depart; his passport shall be made
And crowns [gold coins] for convoy [transportation] put into his purse.
We would not die in that man’s company
That fears his fellowship to die with us.
This day is called the feast of Crispian [i.e., St. Crispian’s Day; Crispian was an early Christian martyr].
He that outlives this day, and comes safe home,
Will stand a tip-toe when the day is named,
And rouse him at the name of Crispian.
He that shall live this day, and see old age,
Will yearly on the vigil [here, eve] feast [give a feast for] his neighbours,
And say ‘To-morrow is Saint Crispian’;
Then will he strip his sleeve and show his scars,
And say ‘These wounds I had on Crispin’s day.’
Old men forget; yet all shall be forgot,
But he’ll remember with advantages [exaggeration]
What feats he did that day; then shall our names.
Familiar in his mouth as household words
Harry the king, Bedford and Exeter,
Warwick and Talbot, Salisbury and Gloucester,
Be in their flowing cups freshly remembered.
This story shall the good man teach his son;
And Crispin Crispian shall ne’er go by,
From this day to the ending of the world,
But we in it shall be remembered;
We few, we happy few, we band of brothers;
For he to-day that sheds his blood with me
Shall be my brother; be he ne’er so vile,
This day shall gentle his condition;
And gentlemen in England now a-bed
Shall think themselves accursed they were not here,
And hold their manhoods cheap whiles any speaks
That fought with us upon Saint Crispin’s day.

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