Granted, I’m easily amused by the absurd nature of most political matters these days but this Time interview with Mohamed Morsi scales obscene new heights of amusement.
According to the Times, “Protocol required President Morsi to answer questions from TIME editors and reporters in his native Arabic, the official language of Egypt. Instead, as a courtesy to his guests, he spoke for most of the hour in English, which he last spoke regularly three decades ago.”
I expect interesting times ahead for Egypt and the West who have to deal with North Africa’s newest dictator.
On the lessons of Planet of the Apes: I remember a movie. Which one? Planet of the Apes. The old version, not the new one. There is a new one. Which is different. Not so good. It [does] not [express] the reality as it was the first one. But at the end, I still remember, this is the conclusion: When the big monkey, he was head of the Supreme Court I think — in the movie! — and there was a big scientist working for him, cleaning things, [who] has been chained there. And it was the planet of the apes after the destructive act of a big war and atomic bombs and whatever in the movie. And the scientist was asking him to do something … “Don’t forget you are a monkey,” [the man] tells [the ape]. “Don’t ask me about this dirty work.” What did the big ape, the monkey, say? He said, “You’re human. You did it [to] yourself.” That’s the conclusion. Can we do something better for ourselves?
Religious freedom was also fair game for Morsi’s grotty language skills.
On freedoms in the new Egypt: I’m very keen on having true freedom of expression. True freedom of faith. And free practice of religious faith. I am keen and I will always be keen on [transfer] of power. I’m an elected President. My chief responsibility is to maintain the national ship to go through this transitional period. This is not easy. Egyptians are determined to [move] forward within the path of freedom and democracy, and this is what I see. Justice and social justice. Development with its comprehensive overall meaning. Human development. Industrial productive development. Scholarly research. Political development. International relations balanced with all different parties, east and west. We are keen in Egypt, and I am personally keen right now, on maintaining freedom, democracy, justice and social justice. The Muslim Brotherhood do not say anything different from that.
I would have much preferred to hear Morsi hold forth on his countrymen’s peculiar obsession with female genital mutilation or their widespread cultural acceptance of rape and misogynistic brutality. He could have explained why he tolerates an abysmal lack of basic equal rights, core educational opportunities or representational voices for women in Egypt.
I’d like to hear how the Muslim Brotherhood plans to act less like apes and more like enlightened men.
As a side note, I wouldn’t mind listening to Morsi’s thoughts on how his third world shithole of a country plans on building a sustainable, durable, peaceful economy without reliance on billions of US aid.