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The Conman’s paradise

In the 1960’s, the Egyptian state newspaper Al-Ahram was filled with headlines about the amazing scientific breakthroughs of the Egyptian military. One such headline celebrated the invention of the first “Arab-made” airplane – one that could reach Mach 2 – while the other announced to the world the creation of Egyptian missiles that could reach …

Mahmoud Salem
Mahmoud Salem

In the 1960’s, the Egyptian state newspaper Al-Ahram was filled with headlines about the amazing scientific breakthroughs of the Egyptian military. One such headline celebrated the invention of the first “Arab-made” airplane – one that could reach Mach 2 – while the other announced to the world the creation of Egyptian missiles that could reach outer space. The Egyptian nationals who read Al-Ahram believed it, and believed that we were becoming a super power, until the 1967 Six-Day War, when our army suffered the most humiliating defeat of its history, and all of those inventions were seen as works of fiction. The editor of Al-Ahram at that time was Mohamed Hassanein Heikel, who was President Gamal Abdel Nasser’s chief propagandist, is now rumoured to be one of five people advising Field Marshal Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi on his yet-to-be-announced presidential campaign.

Yesterday we received a similar report from Al-Ahram boasting the invention of the first Egyptian device that can not only detect Hepatitis C, and AIDS, but can also cure them. The detection device is called C-Fast, and it is a bomb detector that was supposedly further developed to detect an electromagnetic pulse that those diseases apparently elicited in our bodies. In a fantastic video shown on national television, not only were we shown the device, but we were informed that it could cure Hepatitis C and AIDS. An army doctor was shown talking to what is a presumably an AIDS patient, informing him casually that he used to  have AIDS, but now the AIDS is gone, and the patient casually thanks God. The military has naturally announced that it won’t divulge how this device works, or let it outside of Egypt, out of fear that “The West” will steal it.

The name of this miraculous device? CC-D. Get it? CC? Yeah.

You can see where this is going…

I must say, the past eight months have been nothing short of mentally exhausting. It was like watching a silly parody or a mirror image of the year of the Muslim Brotherhood rule. The Brotherhood had a hapless prime minister known as Hisham Qandil; we have a hapless prime minister called Hazem El-Beblawi. The Brotherhood had a constitution that they admitted to be “less than perfect, but the best we can come up with now and we can always amend later”, and the new Constituent Assembly also called their constitution “less than perfect, but the  best we can come up with now and we can always amend later”.  The Brotherhood had the Al-Nour Party as their ally, defending the constitution and the direction the country was taking; the interim government has the Al-Nour Party as its ally, defending the constitution and the direction the country is taking. The Brotherhood said that tourism was important to them, and then made a member of a terrorist group that killed tourists in Luxor the new governor. The interim government  says that tourism is important to them, and then have its media talking heads actively promoting xenophobia and encouraging distrust of foreigners by labeling them spies and foreign agents. The Brotherhood had the Renaissance Project; the interim government promises “huge development projects”. The Brotherhood nominated former president Mohamed Morsi, and, well, finishing that comparison could land me in jail.

An old friend once told me that Egypt is a conman’s paradise, and every day I find this to be more and more true. As we have seen over the years, we have a significant percentage of the population that is susceptible to a conman’s game, due to their incredible desperation and greed. As my father always said, you can only con the greedy, but once you do, you better take your winnings and run. Unfortunately for our conmen, they believe that they can maintain their con for the long term, which is why they always fail. The National Democratic Party did this and failed, and the Brotherhood did this and failed as well. Why? The Younger generations. They never fall for the con for long, and once they do, their retribution is uncontrollable. You can con their parents all you want, God knows that this is all that they are good for, but if you are looking for the long game, you better get the youth buy-in, and they are not going to buy anyone’s false goods anymore.

Egyptian schools and universities have been off for the past month and a half. The move was justified as a means to prevent the spread of swine-flu amongst large crowds, but that didn’t seem to stop them from having an audience at the local derby game that had 25,000 fans sitting together. Today, the news reported that  “security authorities” have recommended a cancellation of the second educational term in our public educational institutions for “security reasons”, which is code for “we don’t want to give large groups of young angry people a place to congregate until the elections are over”. The security authorities have forgotten that the angry young people can meet or organise through the internet, and that it will make no difference if they cancel this term, because you won’t be able to cancel all the coming school terms. Please also note that the younger generations do not care one bit about going against “legitimate democratic rule” if the idea is delaying school until the election is over and have the youth face the new reality “for the sake of the country or stability”. Yeah, good luck with that plan. Also, kill and jail as many as you want to enforce it. It still won’t work. And if you believe it will, I have one word for you: Ukraine.


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  • egyptian

    take care, by the constitution any patient will not be cured by the
    military new device cc, could have a military trial as he can affect the army unity and state security by telling lies about his health.

    • egyptian

      and if he died , it’s for sure the tricks of the Americans, MUSAD and may be Hezbu-Allah or the Iranians and we should protect our patients after the cure from being targets to Hamas through tunnels.

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  • sam enslow

    Another big one is that Putin and Russia are willing to sell arms to Egypt out of the goodness of their hearts and that Saudi Arabia and all other Arab states are giving aid to Egypt because Arabs are all one family (if they are, it is the Adams Family). Putin would never interfere in Egypt’s internal affairs. Just look at Ukraine, Georgia, and the other countries that were part of the former USSR. Look at the influence the Salafi had in drafting the new constitution that subjects most “rights” to “The Law.” You will be as free as whoever is in governments says you are.

  • abu7anafnaf

    well said salem..

  • Abdelrahman

    Another piece of (il)liberal nonsense. Stuffing an article with unverified facts is all you can do nowadays huh?

    • Hani Ammar

      speaking of unverified facts….I just heard someone on national TV claim they can detect and cure HIV and Hepatitis C. with a magic wand! Amazing!

  • omega pal

    “Obscurantism” is the most Egyptian disease, hope that CC Army will invent an antidote to cure it. LOL! They are pathetric

  • gurr

    the army doesnt need propaganda it has enough support,and so does the current government…also and regardless if it works or not when it comes to research its always good to try and fail because your one step closer.also, civilian doctors were involved so its not really an exclusive thing.doesnt matter.. regardless, Ukraine is a complicated scenario and you have deep divisions as well as superpowers working and controlling the situation, and if we think that revolutions which I support great I am glad the previous dictators are gone, but if we think the superpowers have no role in controlling the situation to the T, we are just ignoring facts and giving ourselves away to control that for some reason people dont want to admit because they are too blindly supportive of not even a revolutionary idea, its become blindly attached to a day. and now were fighting over which day 25 or 30 is better, and ignoring the ideas that really are the same and finding a way to make it happen. yea, so everyone calls each other slaves, while blindly they are falling for it too in the name of so many things.

    • sam enslow

      Other nations “play” in all other nations including the US and Russia and China. There are no exceptions. It is the job of a nation’s government to accept or reject ideas offered by people from other countries. In the US, one need only to register as a foreign agent to operate legally. Not all ideas offered by others are bad – nor are they all good. Even bad suggestions can be offered with the best of intent. Far too often Egyptian politicians use “foreign fingers” as an excuse for their incompetence. When any politician makes a suggestion (Egyptian or otherwise), ask, “Who benefits?” If Egypt benefits as a whole, accept the suggestion. If not, refuse it. But now most problems in Egypt have been caused by Egyptians and only Egyptians can solve them. But this will require a government that wants to govern, not rule, Egypt along with leaders who actually are willing to talk with and listen to the people. Most of Egypt’s problems would cost little money to resolve. More money only allows old problems to continue, to be swept under the rug one more time.

  • gyy

    AIDs is when T cells are below a certain number so it is very possible to raise the Tcells in the body and still have the virus. AIDs is not the virus.

  • Peter Robinson

    Glad to see the condemnation of the C-FAST or sometimes now called I-FAST, so called ‘detector’, which simply can not and does not work. Based on the fake bomb ‘detectors’ (see for example ADE651 and GT200) it is no more than a fancy dowsing rod.

  • wepump

    I am not sure but you are getting very sarcastic are you sure you like being a commentator these days? As to the army and its new toy let them play 99.9% of everything new never makes the market place due to short comings in its design But I was happy to see they looking at something other than ways to jail people tells me there is HOPE something you seem to need again my brother in your life

  • Diana Mansur

    Simplifying matters seems to be a common liberal tradition now…Dear Mahmoud,when it comes to “Ukraine” you need to study Benderas subject and our history only as far as back to 1940 and then, I hope, you would not draw parallels so easily.

  • Omar sherin

    The article is not accurate/fair in two fundmental points. As a start there are two devices not one: a detector called C-fast which stands for C as in Look and FAST as in Field Advanced Screening Tool and the detector has been patent pending since 2011 well before the army chief rises to power ( it recently Has been patented by WIPO – link attached ) this means that it “the detector I mean” (can’t) be completely fraud. There must be some substance in the proposal.

    For the other device which is called CCD ( complete cure device) it’s currently patent pending and I see your point in referring the name to the army chief name but it’s just an assumption. And even if it refers to him I don’t see an issue with that. We have germanium ! and the newly discovered fish species Etheostoma obama !! Don’t we ? Btw 5 new fish species are named after current and former US presidents and VPs. I chose to give them the benefit of doubt until it proves other wise.

    and finally you said that the army said he doesn’t want to share the details with the west !!c, this is completely wrong as the device and the alleged cure has been submitted on february 5th for FDA – Food and Drug Administration (USA) and its EU counterpart the European Medicines Agency (EMA). and this was publicly announced in the press conference. so Cmon plz

    WIPO patent link : http://patentscope.wipo.int/search/en/detail.jsf

  • Fighter

    I don’t know about the ballistic missile, but I am positive that the supersonic fighter was real. The HA300 was a light delta wing supersonic fighter developed in the early 60’s by the Helouan aircraft organization with hired german help, and using a power plant produced by military production, probably using parts from external sub contractors. Several prototypes were built and tested i flight, and I have seen one recently at the Berlin air museum, complete with EAF markings. I don’t know about the mach 2 you describe (and probably made up) as supersonic means over the speed of sound but not necessarily mach 2)

    The aircraft series production was shelved after the ’67 defeat..

    A word of advice: you are a good man, but be careful when stating assumptions as facts in order to sound compelling as you never know whether a reader would know more than you, and would stand you corrected about the facts.

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  • Sally Wilton

    Egyptian news is the best. You couldn’t even begin to imagine such hilarious stories. I understand the machine turns the virus to kofta! Wow impressive. Egyptians must be rolling on the floor laughing at the military coming up with these jokes.

  • Truth Spitter

    false intellectual fame whore

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