Egypt | St. Louis Public Radio


Commentary: Egypt is in an ongoing revolution

Oct 2, 2019

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, July 10, 2013 - The following is condensed from open letter Ismail Serageldin, director of the Library of Alexandria, sent on July 6.

Egypt is once more doing things its own unique way. After millions of people went into the streets and, in 18 days that shook the world, succeeded in toppling the regime of Hosni Mubarak, they came back in their millions into the streets and squares of Egypt and toppled Mohamed Morsi.

Missouri rice farmers to export rice to Egypt
Southeast Missouri State University

It takes a lot of water to grow rice.

Farmers in Missouri’s bootheel have plenty from underground aquifers, replenished by the Mississippi River. But in Egypt, the government has slashed rice planting in half to conserve water.

A new dam near the Nile River’s source in Ethiopia is threatening to stem the flow to Egypt’s rice paddies.

This article first appeared in the St. Lous Beacon, Oct. 5, 2011 - Jack Shenker, a journalist who has been honored for his human rights reporting, took a different way of looking at the Arab Spring during a recent speech at Webster University. He spoke about the struggles of migrants, how they are received by the communities they impact, and misconceptions surrounding migrations around the globe.

An ancient Egyptian mummy named Pet Menekh is placed in a CT scanner at the Washington University School of Medicine.
Washington University School of Medicine

In a dark room on the third floor of the Saint Louis Art Museum, nearly a dozen grade school boys encircled a tour guide, who was dispensing facts about Egyptian mummies. But instead of crowding around three mummies lying nearby in glass cases, they stood in front of a recently added feature to the exhibit: a touchscreen that displays images of what the mummies look like inside.

This article originally appeared in the St. Louis Beacon: This week’s Rosh Hashana services marked the first day of the Jewish Year 5774. The ancient notes from a great shofar – a hollowed-out ram’s horn -- sounded at dozens of synagogues and Jewish center across the region at the end of services.

Peace in the Middle East is a constant prayer on Rosh Hashana. It may have been so since the days of Abraham. And this year, the issue is more sharply focused as it comes near a major war anniversary and the time for decisions on what to do about chemical warfare in Syria.

Commentary: Egypt is a battleground for extremist groups

Aug 26, 2013

This article originally appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Aug. 26, 2013: Cairo, Egypt - June 30 was Revolution 2.0 in Egypt. The people turned out in larger numbers than ever before in Egypt (and perhaps in human history) to call for the Morsi presidency to go. In the eyes of the majority, the Muslim Brotherhood’s legitimacy was over.

Morris Kalliny near demonstrators at Tahir Square in Cairo this past December.
Provided by Mr. Kalliny

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon,  Aug. 21, 2013: The violence sweeping across Egypt has shaken many people as the shocking numbers of the dead, wounded and injured are reported in the news. There are those, however, such as Egyptian-born Morris Kalliny, an assistant professor of marketing at Saint Louis University, who predicted just that in a recent Beacon article.

Kalliny worries that the recent eruption of violence could jeopardize the prospects of democracy in Egypt.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, July 15, 2013: WASHINGTON – When is a military coup not really a coup? On Capitol Hill, the answer seems to be: when it takes place in Cairo and the results suit the U.S. agenda.

Under a law passed nearly three decades ago, the U.S. government is supposed to cut off aid to governments that take power as a result of a military coup. But Missouri’s senators are among the majority in Congress likely to keep U.S. aid to Egypt flowing.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, July 2, 2013 - WASHINGTON -- In the wake of mass protests that spurred the Egyptian military to issue an ultimatum Monday to the country's president, some experts see signs of hope in the new wave of democracy but also fear that terrorism may worsen in the political chaos.

"I believe the country is truly moving toward real democracy," said Morris Kalliny, an Egyptian-born assistant professor at Saint Louis University. "But what I fear in the next few months are outbreaks of terrorism."

(via NPR)

NPR's senior social media strategist Andy Carvin was our sole guest today on "St. Louis on the Air." 

Carvin touched on his beginnings, his role as a "information DJ" and how he pieces together truth in real time.

How does he describe his job?

Carvin said one of the best ways he can think of to describe what he does is a "journalistic test pilot."

"I use the word storytelling because...not everything I do could be considered journalism."

"Someone once referred to what I do as 'information DJ-ing.'"

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Dec. 14, 2012 - WASHINGTON – As Egypt’s government and the Muslim Brotherhood try to engineer the approval of an Islamist-backed constitution, U.S. Sen. Roy Blunt is calling for “a healthy discussion” of whether U.S. aid to Egypt should be reassessed.

“The Arab Spring . . . has gone from one person enforcing their will on [Egypt] to another person or group imposing their will,” Blunt, R-Mo., told reporters Thursday. He said Egypt is “putting its relationship with the U.S. – militarily and financially and aid-wise – in jeopardy. And I’m concerned about it.”

Akin calls for suspension of aid to Egypt

Sep 20, 2012
(UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

Missouri Rep. Todd Akin says the U.S. should suspend aid to Egypt because of the attack on the U.S. embassy and the repeated burning of American flags by Egyptians.

Akin said in a statement Thursday that the fact that the embassy attack occurred on Sept. 11 suggests it was planned and not spontaneous. He said if Egypt were a good ally, it should have better protected the U.S. embassy.

Akin said U.S. aid to Egypt should be suspended "until the Egyptian government takes corrective action to restore its relationship with the United States."

CAIRO - Of course I mourn the loss of our ambassador to Libya and the other State Department employees who lost their lives there. I abhor violence of all kinds, so I do not think it is an appropriate response to the film trailer that defames the prophet Mohamed.

I think the whole case of the attack in Libya needs more investigation, as it seems unlikely the timing of the attack in Libya was a coincidence, and perhaps not a reaction to the film’s content.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Sept. 12, 2012 - WASHINGTON – The fatal attack on U.S. diplomats in Libya and the flag-burning demonstration at the embassy in Cairo on Sept. 11 have heightened concerns about anti-American trends in Arab Spring nations.

“As Libya and Egypt have changed, we’re dealing in a much different atmosphere,” said U.S. Sen. Roy Blunt, R-Mo., a member of the Senate Intelligence Committee.

Judge rules 3,200-year-old mummy mask can stay in St. Louis

Apr 5, 2012
(Courtesy Saint Louis Art Museum)

A 3,200-year-old mummy mask at the center of an international dispute will remain in St. Louis following a ruling by a federal judge.

The U.S. government sought to return the funeral mask of Lady Ka-nefer-nefer to Egypt, claiming it had been stolen before the St. Louis Art Museum purchased it from a New York art dealer in 1998. But U.S. District Judge Henry Autry in St. Louis ruled on March 31 that the mask can remain with the art museum.

Letter from Gaza: Getting there

Dec 19, 2011

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Dec. 19, 2011 - Marc Thayer, who previously wrote voices articles from Iraq, recently tried to get into Gaza from Egypt to visit Palestinians he had worked with in an Association of American Voices program in Jordan. His story follows:

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Nov. 11, 2011 - The last of three American students to arrive home after a "scary" police detention in Egypt, Derrik Sweeney of Jefferson City was greeted by family and friends late Saturday at Lambert Airport and told journalists that he had been hit and threatened after being taken into custody in the midst of Cairo demonstrations.

Morning headlines: Monday, August 22, 2011

Aug 22, 2011

Critics challenge Mo. measure to limit payday loan interest

The proposed ballot measure would cap interest, fees and charges for payday and car title loans at 36 percent per year.

Critics of the proposal filed a lawsuit in the state Capitol's home of Cole County. The suit contends a ballot summary for the proposal is inadequate and unfair and that the cost estimate for the proposal does not address all the possible costs.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, April 8, 2011 - As the "Arab spring" uprisings continue to roil countries in the Middle East and North Africa, security experts in the region's closest U.S. ally are watching the developments with mixed feelings about their potential impact on Israel.

Flickr | ChrisYunker

The U.S. Attorney's office is demanding that the Saint Louis Art Museum give up an Egyptian mask because it's stolen property.

Commentary: Egypt and the world after Mubarak

Mar 2, 2011

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, March 2, 2011 - The momentous events surrounding President Mubarak's resignation raise three vital questions: First, what are the prospects for stable democratic transition in Egypt? Second, what are the implications for Arab-Israeli relations and American's role in the region? And third, what are the consequences if a viable democracy does emerge from the old regime?

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Feb. 16, 2011 - WASHINGTON - As protests led to revolutions that overthrew the governments of Egypt and Tunisia in recent weeks, many observers faulted U.S. intelligence on the region as appearing to lag behind the rapidly unfolding events.

U.S. Sen. Roy Blunt, R-Mo., a member of the Senate Intelligence Committee, says he wants to know why. And he also intends "to ask lots of other questions" about the intelligence assessments of likely future developments in the potentially explosive region.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Feb. 11, 2011 - WASHINGTON - The dramatic events that unfolded Friday in Cairo represented a promising beginning to Egypt's transition, lawmakers said, but reformers face some daunting challenges to their efforts to transform the regime into a functioning democracy.

U.S. Sen. Roy Blunt, R-Mo., described President Hosni Mubarak's handover of power to the military as a "critical moment for Egypt and this region. The Egyptian people deserve both stability and freedom. I'm very hopeful this transition allows for both."

NPR Coverage of Developments in Egypt

Feb 11, 2011

For the latest developments in Egypt, here is NPR's coverage.

NPR's "The Two Way" also has a live blog of the coverage, which you can see here.

Commentary: Mubarak at the Mendoza Line

Feb 10, 2011

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Feb. 10, 2011 - Life is not always fair. Consider the case of Mario Mendoza as an example. Mendoza was a banjo-hitting shortstop who entered the popular lexicon when slugger George Brett jokingly remarked on ESPN that the first thing he checked in the Sunday paper was to make sure that his batting average was above the "Mendoza Line."

The term caught on and now when a player's batting average sinks below .200, he's said to have crossed the Mendoza Line. Mendoza, incidentally, retired with a lifetime average of .215.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Feb. 3, 2011 - WASHINGTON -- The key to maintaining stability during Egypt's transition to a new government will be its military, Illinois' U.S. senators agreed Thursday, and the United States should do all it can to support a peaceful transfer of power.

At a joint forum with Illinois constituents, Dick Durbin, D-Ill., and Mark Kirk, R-Ill., said they generally agreed with President Barack Obama's approach in pressing for a relatively quick and peaceful transition in Egypt that would maintain U.S. influence.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Feb. 1, 2011 - WASHINGTON -- As the calls for reform intensify in Egypt -- with a massive protest rally scheduled for Tuesday -- congressmen and academic experts from the St. Louis area warned that the unrest might spread elsewhere in the Middle East and North Africa.

"What happens in Egypt is critical to our security and economic interests," said Rep. Russ Carnahan, D-St. Louis, a member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee. "There's serious concern about the possible 'domino' impact in the Middle East."

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Feb. 1, 2011 - Two weeks in a country doesn't make any tourist an expert. But such a visit can offer a glimpse into a nation's contradictions, challenges and strengths.

In the case of Egypt, we're talking about a country that long has celebrated its past -- even as its people question the direction of their political future.