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Posted at 11:09 AM ET, 02/ 4/2011

Selected reader dispatches from Egypt

By Ryan Kellett
cairo protests
An Egyptian anti-government protester at Tahrir Square in Cairo on February 4, 2011. (Patrick Baz / AFP)

Earlier this week, we asked readers to send The Post their dispatches from the ground in Egypt. Three of the first-person stories we've received so far provide varied perspectives on how events have unfolded in recent days.

Fatma Agwa shared her story from several days ago, describing "gunfire everywhere...such as everywhere here in Egypt...." She accused "Mubarak's men" of working with "thieves and criminals to loot some houses and shops...." Agwa continued: "Now in Egypt there is no food, no ambulances, no medicine, nothing here... every shop is closed, and we do not sleep at night because there are no police here, and all the thieves were released from prison! It is truly hell...."

Sarah Blake described herself as a 19-year-old American student in Cairo who has since returned home. She was at a street cafe on Jan. 26 when she and a friend "saw and heard the running of huge groups of people" and went to Tahrir Square to "see any of the action." But they found the square largely empty, and headed back to her hostel only to find "men chasing groups with 2x4s and lead pipes" nearby. On Jan. 28, Blake describes being "stuck in the action" trying to get food. While attempting to stay on the perimeter, she and her friend were funneled by police into the very center of the protests. Still, Blake was impressed by the Egyptian camaraderie:

I saw a man, his eyes bloodshot. He was struggling to breathe and could barely see and I offered him water from my bottle. He managed to find composure,... took that moment to put his anger aside and show genuine gratefulness. When he gave the bottle back he went back to yelling and screaming and protesting.

Chitranjan Sawant witnessed an argument among young men turn violent in Tahrir Square. "As the freedom fighter spoke, a rock came hurtling from the pro-Mubarak group and hit the freedom fighter in the head. With blood streaming down his face, he raised his voice many decibels and shouted, 'Down with Hosni Mubarak!' His friends gathered around him and started to bandage his wounds."

Sawant went on:

There was an Army tank parked nearby with a couple of soldiers standing on it and watching the pro-Mubarak and anti-Mubarak small groups of men coming to blows. The soldiers just watched the scene as if a cock-fight was being staged with money at stake. The soldiers took no action to separate the fighting sides or to stop the political feud from developing into a homicide. Someone from the crowd shouted and exhorted the soldiers to do something to stop the family feud, but soldiers stood motionless as if they were gripped with total inertia.

If you are in Egypt now or were on the ground for this week's protests, we invite you to send us your three-paragraph story at Please share this link with those you know who might want to contribute.

By Ryan Kellett  | February 4, 2011; 11:09 AM ET
Categories:  Your Take  
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Conservative talk radio and Fox News host Glenn Beck called for an invasion of the United Kingdom on Friday to head off what he called an attempt by the British to re-establish America as a colony, as well as the rest of the British Empire.

Beck said he recently saw a documentary on “the British invasion” of rock bands during the 1960s and realized it was the cause of recent unrest in Egypt and the Islamic world overall, given that Britain once had colonies in the Middle East.

“Make no mistake this is all part of a trend,” Beck said as he put album covers from The Beatles, the Rolling Stones and The Dave Clark Five on his chalkboard. He also put up pictures of Saddam Hussein, Adolph Hitler and, for some unclear reason, Lenny Kosnowksi from the 1970s-era sitcom Laverne & Shirley. He then drew circles, lines and smiley faces to link these disparate elements together, along with the date “1776” and “War of 1812.”


Posted by: Mikeystyle | February 5, 2011 11:53 AM | Report abuse

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