House Training Media Dogs.
Training isn’t always a bad thing although Stalin’s Gulag and Pol Pot left a lot to be desired including corpses. Mao did some retraining but few returned home - alive.
I guess if you do training in Egypt you hope the trainers have more skills than the ‘students’. But skills in what? When since 1052 did the Egyptian government get it right – except in maintaining their power?
At this point those members of tis forum who ‘believe’ that things are OK (5%) or chose to think that, either, they are entitled to a moral point of view or that local things are best ignored (70%). I suggest you stop reading but continue your theatrical interest and concern for the difficult life of your beloved (no surname) average Egyptian.
Here is the story about dominating public opinion and killing any communication/thought that does not fit with the single ideology position – the military/government since 1952 are glorious, unself interested and invincible.
The Egyptian Military is now doing training of journalists – its mandatory on journalists. This is odd because all media is already tightly regulated. In fact independent western bodies say that Egypt is nearly the least free place on the planet. https://freedomhouse.org/report/freedom ... 2017/egypt and https://rsf.org/en/egypt
Current ‘tools’ to control journalists and issue propaganda include: Permits for newspapers, registration of all workers, heavy censorship laws, the stacking of the Journalists Syndicate with junta supporters, prohibition on publishing a full range of military and military-commercial matters, the use of secret military courts against journalists, the prohibition of journalists in Sinai, the jailing of lawyers who defend free speech, the absence of press conferences where journalists can ask questions, blocked web news sites, the second largest number of arrested journalists in the world, 11 killed journalists in the last 7 years, the al Jazeera case, the new BBC case to expel it, the expulsion of the Times of London, the existence of state owned media with the rest, including TV owned by the military and junta friends - can it go further? Yes it can.
Here is the new ‘initiative’:
“the Nasser Military Academy calls for editors-in-chief of Egyptian newspapers and websites to enrol in mandatory strategic training sessions in media and national security. Former generals who now teach at the academy are giving the lectures.
… Al-Monitor reported in November that judges had enrolled in training sessions in strategic and national security studies at the academy. Moreover, the Egyptian Ministry of Higher Education signed a protocol Dec. 29 under which university students and teaching staff would be enrolled in training sessions at the academy.”
https://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/origin ... urity.html
The Nasser Academy has many features which include poor educational standards, splendid facilities, the low education of its lecturers, the fact that no/few/the worst other country sends its soldiers there because standards are so low, the absence of any published articles by its teachers, the absence of international conferences unlike similar institutions elsewhere, (unlike other paces) the absolute refusal to use ‘outsiders’ as teachers, the primitive anti-intellectual curriculum, the rejection of any outside evaluation of its effectiveness, the financial generosity to students (probably because few Egyptians want to go there). It goes on. It’s a closed place which rejects criticism – and therefore change.
Their so-called professors of military strategy (Salem, former head of military intelligence, about 1,000 years old and a dreadful education) put out lots of press releases – all supportive of Sisi – in areas where they have no skills like Tourism revenues, the application of military law to presidential candidates, the denunciation of western human rights criticism, anything but his job of military strategy. It’s a bit like the cleaners trying to run the Microsoft factory – using only a gun.
The Nasser Academy’s skills do not include clear, critical thinking, concepts, initiative, ideas, analysis or reading and writing. Maybe they can count – I doubt it. They have much to teach the media on group think, dogma and obedience.
The proposed training of journos is on national security. The only national security issue at the moment is the sheer incompetence of the Army to deal with the Sinai/Terrorism issue in 7 years – in fact its got worse. If you wanted that to improve a robust public debate about previous failures would be a good start. But if you had failed you would want to suppress all discussion of that. I guess after 5 defeats in 30 years there is a need for silence if reputations and power are to be maintained. The Western military journals have been making the same criticisms of the Egyptian military leaders for decades but nothing has changed. http://www.unc.edu/depts/diplomat/AD_Is ... rabs1.html
I think that Egypt is unique. A small group of politically unskilled people has ruthlessly run the country for 70 years, avoided criticism for one military disaster after another, ruined the economy, consumed vast sums of western aid, promoted an anti-meritocratic system based on obedience, military style decision making and autocratic hierarchy but enriched a large group of sycophantic supporters whilst avoiding the western criticism that normally goes with this type of behavior.
One generalization academics make of the last 70 years is that the average Egyptian will accept a bad, corrupt and repressive regime providing it delivers stability and moderate prosperity. At last count there was neither much stability nor prosperity. In the last 70 years much of the third world has made huge advances whilst Egypt is frozen and goes backward relative to the others who move on.
Its odd. Nasser established a one party state ages ago, locked up the opposition, nationalized the press and expelled their previous owners yet after 3 generations of control the Army is not fully satisfied with results. I wonder which results upset them – could it be criticism of the performance of the Army? The murder by the state/army/police/security services of that Italian kid. The stuff-ups with the Canal $US9 billion military upgrade. The Ethiopian water blackmail. The military mess with terrorism in Sinai and on the Libyan border. Hyper-Inflation and high unemployment. They are hyper-sensitive souls.
This compulsory training is probably a front. Really it’s a form of intimidation showing who is in power and who are the slaves. If it was the Pentagon it would be a voluntary charm offensive but in Egypt its ‘do what I say’.
There is also a similar program to ‘educate’ Imams which has 2 Major Generals delivering the program – what would they know. It’s a lazy 5 day course only 5 hours a day – obviously the work ethic is not practiced in Muslim ethics. https://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/origin ... igion.html.
Some of the Imam training content is in ‘conspiracy detection’ and rebutting false (western) news. It sounds like Imams are to part of the Egyptian Security State sipported bt 300,000-400,000 paid informers. http://carnegie-mec.org/2015/03/17/miss ... -pub-59391, 1,000,000 police and hundreds of thousands of others like State Security. It’s a lot of money to spend but obviously not enough to dominate and subjugate Egyptians. Would another million help – has anyone thought any of them barely capable except in a crude intimidatory, brutalistic way?
The Imam and journalist ‘training’/intimidation is mentioned in the local media but its fair to assume there is a lot more going on in this vein on the quiet – a deal of it unpleasant. We will never hear about it. The idea that you can hold power in this way is absurd and reminiscent of the dying days of the French monarchy or the idiot Romanovs. Its desperate and, likely futile.
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