Mubarak released, enters military hospital in Cairo

posted at 10:41 am on August 22, 2013 by Ed Morrissey

The Egyptian army had plenty of choices for keeping Hosni Mubarak out of sight after his release from prison.  The choice of a military hospital is … striking:

Egypt’s ousted leader Hosni Mubarak was released from prison and transported by helicopter to a military hospital Thursday in Cairo, according to exclusive footage shown on a private TV station.

A medically equipped helicopter landed Thursday at an Egypt prison Thursday to transport Hosni Mubarak from prison to his new home under house arrest, state TV reported, as dozens of the ousted leader’s supporters rallied outside waiting for the ousted leader to be released after more than two years in detention. …

Prime Minister Hazem el-Beblawi has ordered that Mubarak be put under house arrest as part of the emergency measures imposed this month after a wave of violence sparked by Morsi’s ouster. The decision appeared designed to ease some of the criticism over Mubarak being freed from prison and ensure that he appears in court next week for a separate trial.

Yes, but it’s not going to ease anyone’s concerns over the military takeover last month.  While a military hospital might mean easier security arrangements, it looks more like an embrace of their former dictator while the army continues its roundup of Muslim Brotherhood figures.  Police arrested the group’s spokesman today, for instance:

Ahmed Arif, the spokesman for the Muslim Brotherhood was arrested Thursday, state-run television al-Masriya reported.

He’s the latest key figure in the group to be taken into custody by Egypt’s interim military government.

The hospital may be necessary, given the conflicting reports over Mubarak’s health, but Fox notes that some of those reports were a bit self-serving, too:

Since his ouster, Mubarak’s supporters have released conflicting details about his health, including that the 85 year old suffered a stroke, a heart attack and at times went into a coma. His critics called these an attempt to gain public sympathy and court leniency.

His wife, Suzanne, has been living in Cairo and keeping a low-profile, occasionally visiting Mubarak and their two sons in prison. But security officials said Mubarak was more likely to be moved to a military hospital because of his ailing health.

Meanwhile, the prospects for the Egyptian economy are going from bad to worse.  The AP reports that their tourist industry — which was already tanking before this summer — has dried up almost entirely now:

Heshmat Youssef used to make a decent living sailing foreign tourists down Egypt’s Nile River. Since political unrest flared, business has dried up faster than water in the desert.

Riots and killings that spiked after the Aug. 14 crackdown against followers of ousted President Mohammed Morsi have delivered a severe blow to Egypt’s tourism industry, which until recently accounted for more than 11 percent of the country’s gross domestic product and nearly 20 percent of its foreign currency revenues.

The chairman of the Egyptian Airports Company, Gad el-Karim Nasr, said arrivals at Egyptian airports have dropped by more than 40 percent from Sunday through Tuesday compared to the same time the previous week. He said that in the same time-frame, 13,000 tourists, mostly from Germany and Italy, have left the Red Sea resorts of Sharm el-Sheikh and Hurghada — with only 3,000 new arrivals.

The US market had already mostly disappeared. Now Europeans are avoiding Egypt, a big blow to their hopes for hard currency in an economy that had already been in crisis.  While the US and the West had other interests in Egypt, the domestic unrest came mostly from Mohamed Morsi’s economic impotence and starvation conditions in the country.  The coup has made that problem even more acute.  Unless the military can dial down the violence and rage in Egypt, the tourist industry will remain shuttered, and the military may find that the mobs in the streets will shortly turn their sights on them.  Hosting Mubarak might exacerbate and accelerate that trend.


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That picture sort of reminds me of those old Joe Camel ads, except Joe Camel was 80.

Oil Can on August 22, 2013 at 10:49 AM

with only 3,000 new arrivals.

Wait, people outside of the Russian and Chinese military are still going to Egypt?

Basically, the only country to visit in that area is Israel. Maybe Jordan too, though I’d do some research on Jordan. Otherwise, htey either hate Westerners or are unstable. More likely, both.

rbj on August 22, 2013 at 10:49 AM

War is just a racket. A racket is best described, I believe, as something that is not what it seems to the majority of people. Only a small inside group knows what it is about. It is conducted for the benefit of the very few at the expense of the masses.

roflmmfao

donabernathy on August 22, 2013 at 10:50 AM

Weekend at Bernie’s.

Buttercup on August 22, 2013 at 10:51 AM

The doctors are bringing him out of ssuspended animation.

Red Creek on August 22, 2013 at 10:55 AM

That picture sort of reminds me of those old Joe Camel ads, except Joe Camel was 80.

Oil Can on August 22, 2013 at 10:49 AM

He looks like Southern Comfort man.

slickwillie2001 on August 22, 2013 at 10:57 AM

The coup has made that problem even more acute. Unless the military can dial down the violence and rage in Egypt, the tourist industry will remain shuttered, and the military may find that the mobs in the streets will shortly turn their sights on them.

What coup? There was no coup in Egypt!

But yeah, the current regime better do something about calming things down enough that the tourists return. A sector that accounts for 11% of GDP is a pretty big hit to the economy. Of course what sane person would be touring Egypt right now with riots, curfews, and burning churches?

Happy Nomad on August 22, 2013 at 10:59 AM

Hmmm, no bomb and rocket attacks in Israel lately? I wonder why that is? Nothing eases the mind more than to see Muslims attacking Muslims. It must be simple dumb luck that the “religion of peace” is anything but these days.

HiJack on August 22, 2013 at 11:00 AM

Good. Crush the brotherhood…church-burning scum. Then come to Washington and arrest Barry’s MB advisors.

thedevilinside on August 22, 2013 at 11:01 AM

“not going to ease anyone’s concerns over the military takeover last month.”

Military takeover?

Egyptian coup?

Still running that meme?

Civilian government in place (albeit interim) and an intact judiciary…

If this were a military takeover…it’d look a lot different right up front.

Haven’t heard nor seen any mass rioting going on in Cairo about this almost week-old announcement (in the Middle East) that Mubarak was being “released” from prison. Actually, sort of like stateside, released on bond…and perfectly legal as well.

He is not a free man.

He wields no power.

His constant right-hand man is now well over a year in the grave.

And, believe it or not, seems the bulk of Egyptians miss the days of Mubarak…at least they were not being randomly shot in the street by massed throngs of known killers, or having their homes burnt to the ground, or shot, beheaded, and such because they were friends with a Christian next door.

The myth of “democracy” in the Middle East will remain a myth unless or until shariah and the Koran are relegated to a level of the Book of Common Prayer or Luther’s Catechism, or the Bible being used to hold family papers and precious photographs.

Until then…stop talking about “democracy” in the Middle East. There is only one representative democracy in the Middle East…Israel…and they are far more tolerant of non-Jewish citizens than Islam will ever be.

But, military takeover?

Repeat the lie often enough…it beings to be perceived as absolute truth.

But it is still a lie.

coldwarrior on August 22, 2013 at 11:12 AM

Egypt was a civilized, modern country under Mubarak.

Egypt is a third world, 7th century slum under the Muslim Brotherhood.

portlandon on August 22, 2013 at 11:16 AM

Both Egypt and the US are doing a good job in destroying their own tourism industries.

patman77 on August 22, 2013 at 11:17 AM

The myth of “democracy” in the Middle East will remain a myth unless or until shariah and the Koran are relegated to a level of the Book of Common Prayer or Luther’s Catechism, or the Bible being used to hold family papers and precious photographs. coldwarrior on August 22, 2013 at 11:12 AM

Huh. So Christianity is the same as Islam?

There must be things that you know about. You should stick to commenting about them.

Akzed on August 22, 2013 at 11:21 AM

There is only one representative democracy in the Middle East…Israel…and they are far more tolerant of non-Jewish citizens than Islam will ever be.

coldwarrior on August 22, 2013 at 11:12 AM

Liberals would pompously tell you that Democracy looks differently in different parts of the world (sorta along the same lines of the myth that Chris Christie is a different kind of Republican because of where he lives). Nevertheless, Egypt is too big a piece in Middle East stability to simply ignore. The secularists are trying to make the nation into a much more oppressive regime.

But the real crux of the matter is that the United States has no coherent foreign policy in the Middle East. The rat-eared coward seemingly is random in the way he picks winners and losers with no overall ideas about what the end goal is.

Happy Nomad on August 22, 2013 at 11:22 AM

coldwarrior on August 22, 2013 at 11:12 AM

You always have very good insights on these subjects, I appreciate your comments and usually walk away more informed prior to reading them.

Just wanted to say thanks.

Alinsky on August 22, 2013 at 11:22 AM

Both Egypt and the US are doing a good job in destroying their own tourism industries.

patman77 on August 22, 2013 at 11:17 AM

We’re not supposed to talk about the reason for the Australian boycott. An old dude getting moved to a hospital is apparently more important than a hate crime in OK.

Happy Nomad on August 22, 2013 at 11:23 AM

Akzed on August 22, 2013 at 11:21 AM

I took no offense at this, my take was he simply was hoping that Muslims would one day regard their Koran as nothing more than a book( as many Christians do now), hence instead of ala-ackbaring people to death, they are passive about it.

Shrug.

Alinsky on August 22, 2013 at 11:26 AM

We’re not supposed to talk about the reason for the Australian boycott. An old dude getting moved to a hospital is apparently more important than a hate crime in OK.

Happy Nomad on August 22, 2013 at 11:23 AM

But, but, but they were just bored, and one of them was a white guy. Oh wait, I get it now. They hate Australians
.

HiJack on August 22, 2013 at 11:29 AM

He was implying that the prayer book, catechism, and Bible are irrelevant and looked forward to the day when the Koran is too.

What may be true for his home is not true for everyone’s. Just wanted to, you know, get that out there.

Akzed on August 22, 2013 at 11:30 AM

Akzed on August 22, 2013 at 11:21 AM

WTF?

Spent a major part of a career roaming the Middle East and other hellholes, lived with Moslems, was both loved and r4eviled by a lot of Moslems, have been in many mosques in the region, have had many talks over tea and dinner with clerics and just regular old Friday mosque goers over the decades.

And no, Christianity is not the same as Islam…from a Christian view point, nor is Bahai, or Hinduism, or whatever the local religion de jour may be. But, I’d bet if you took a Roman Catholic Missal and tore it to pieces in the middle of St. Peter’s Square…you might make the local evening news…but you would not be hacked to death by an angry mod of nuns, priests and devout Catholics. Try that in Mecca with a Koran sometime.

Get back to me…if you can.

In any case, when religion is used to promulgate theocracy…then it is no longer a religion…just an excuse to do evil.

coldwarrior on August 22, 2013 at 11:30 AM

We’re not supposed to talk about the reason for the Australian boycott. An old dude getting moved to a hospital is apparently more important than a hate crime in OK.

Happy Nomad on August 22, 2013 at 11:23 AM

But, but, but they were just bored, and one of them was a white guy. Oh wait, I get it now. They hate Australians
.

HiJack on August 22, 2013 at 11:29 AM

I don’t believe the ‘one-white guy’ story. They all look black to me.

slickwillie2001 on August 22, 2013 at 11:32 AM

[coldwarrior on August 22, 2013 at 11:12 AM]

I agree. This is just media narrative building, the likes of which HA usually points out in a disapproving manner.

Or at least a “to be fair” is inserted to lend it an air of objectivity.

Dusty on August 22, 2013 at 11:37 AM

slickwillie2001 on August 22, 2013 at 11:32 AM

Gang violence…gang initiation…murder in cold blood…innocent kid slaughtered so a couple punkass kids can do the YouTube thing…be all braggin’ ’bout it, be representin’, be kewl, new skool…

And the race hustlers’ toughest comment was that such is “frowned upon.”

New episodes of Duck Dynasty coming…

What goes on outside the 57 states don’t make no difference…get my free stuff from gubmint…got a 64″ flatscreen…new skool.

Lot’s of whites in that equation.

coldwarrior on August 22, 2013 at 11:37 AM

Don’t ignore or forget the massive demonstrations against Morsi BEFORE the military moved in to effectively stop this escalation into civil war AND Morsi’s ongoing destruction of any hopes for democracy in Egypt.

The vapid mantra that Morsi was ‘democratically elected’ ignores that, like Hitler, Morsi came to power and immediately began dismantling the institutions that enabled democracy and a middle class economy to emerge in Egypt. That’s what the original demonstrations were all about – his dismantling of democracy and his insertion of the Muslim Brotherhood and Islamist authority over the people.

The army moved in to prevent what he was doing – and the current fight is between the democracy-desirous people in Egypt and the Islamists.

As for the US policy, Obama and his gang of socialists are totally ignorant of the history and problems in the MENA – and haven’t a clue how to interact with other peoples. Whether it be his ‘thin red line’ in Syria, his utter ignoring of the Green demonstrations for democracy in Iran; his Benghazi and ‘it’s all due to a video’ catastrophe; his removal of support in Iraq; his insults to Israel; his insults to the UK and the his support for Argentina taking over the Falkland Islands; his support for the Venezualan dictator Chavez; his …on and on and on. What is their policy? They have none other than to talk in flowery vapid rhetoric ‘The American people are always there to help those in need (cough, cough)…

Note that the US is now irrelevant on the world scene. No-one takes Obama, his vapid words, or his actions seriously anymore. The fact that he’s destroying the US economy by destroying the small business community – is something that will drive the world farther and farther from taking the US seriously as either a power for economic growth or a power for security in the world.

ETAB on August 22, 2013 at 11:39 AM

coldwarrior on August 22, 2013 at 11:30 AM

I didn’t say you didn’t know about the ME. Share your knowledge and experience with us, I’m sure we’ll all benefit. Please allow me to share mine with you.

The Bible, BCP, and catechisms of all kinds are not relics of a bygone era. The BCP (even the 1662 edition) is in use on every continent, Luther’s catechism is still widely used, and thousands of Muslims convert to Christ daily based primarily on the dissemination of Bibles in Muslim lands.

So I think that what you really hope for is that the Koran not become what these Christian documents are.

Akzed on August 22, 2013 at 11:41 AM

I don’t believe the ‘one-white guy’ story. They all look black to me. slickwillie2001 on August 22, 2013 at 11:32 AM

I think one is a reverse Oreo.

Akzed on August 22, 2013 at 11:42 AM

I don’t believe the ‘one-white guy’ story. They all look black to me. slickwillie2001 on August 22, 2013 at 11:32 AM

I think one is a reverse Oreo.

Akzed on August 22, 2013 at 11:42 AM

I think he’s mixed race, just like the rat-eared wonder. So….. If any street thug were to be fathered by Obama, this one would be the closest. But I love the way that it is being spun. That it can’t possibly be a hate crime with the “white” one involved. Nevermind the tweet from one of these thugs about 90% of whites are evil. One of them’s white!!!!

Happy Nomad on August 22, 2013 at 11:52 AM

Hmmm, no bomb and rocket attacks in Israel lately? I wonder why that is? Nothing eases the mind more than to see Muslims attacking Muslims. It must be simple dumb luck that the “religion of peace” is anything but these days.

HiJack on August 22, 2013 at 11:00 AM

http://www.bing.com/search?q=missile+fired+israel+lebanon&FORM=AWRE

davidk on August 22, 2013 at 12:03 PM

Egypt must extirpate the Muslim Brotherhood. Everything else is secondary and can be dealt with in due course.

Mason on August 22, 2013 at 12:34 PM

Why would anybody be surprised that Air Chief Marshal Mubarak would be taken to a military hospital, Ed?

Christien on August 22, 2013 at 3:15 PM

LOL. Egypt is going to restore Mubarak. Anti-colonialists hardest hit. Oh the schadenfreude! My eyes are already stinging from it.

The non-democracies of the Middle East work. why do dictatorishipd work in the Middle East? They are a collection of tribal cultures that are incompatible with Democracy. Democracy in the Middle East look like the Muslim Brotherhood. We see that it didn’t work and enough people rejected it. What worked was Mubarak, and heeee’s back!

I hope that MSN commenters that are right of center make this point and rub it in the left’s face in it.

Theworldisnotenough on August 22, 2013 at 3:36 PM

War is just a racket. A racket is best described, I believe, as something that is not what it seems to the majority of people. Only a small inside group knows what it is about. It is conducted for the benefit of the very few at the expense of the masses.

roflmmfao

donabernathy on August 22, 2013 at 10:50 AM

Yeah, but it does make the people on the winning side that didn’t have to fight feel good, it allows for faster promotions for officers, and it “saves or creates jobs” (just ask presidents from at least FDR on up). Those that survive relatively unscathed also get bragging rights and good stories to tell over a few beers.

So, I beg to differ. Also, according to General Patton every American loves a good fight. So if you don’t want death, destruction, and thousands of men coming home missing body parts, then you’re either a coward, a Commie, or both.

Dr. ZhivBlago on August 22, 2013 at 4:54 PM

“Tanned, rested and ready!”

mojo on August 22, 2013 at 11:03 PM