FOREIGN AFFAIRS JULY 26, 2013
Good news! Egypt’s military rulers, who had held former President Mohamed Morsi incommunicado since July 3, have finally explained why. Morsi, according to one of the military’s friendly judges, has been charged with espionage. A president who committed espionage? Here’s the tortured explanation by way of the Egyptian Middle East News Agency:
The investigations judge of the Cairo Appeal Court Hassan Samir addressed charges to Morsi that include spying alongside the Hamas group governing the bordering Gaza strip to conduct violent attacks in Egypt, targeting police premises and officers. The charges also include storming local prisons, destroying them and liberating prisoners, particularly in Wadi al-Natroun Prison. Morsi is also charged with working with Hamas on premeditated murder and kidnap of policemen.
The charges seem to revolve around Hamas helping Morsi escape from one of former President Hosni Mubarak’s prisons in 2011 during the protests against the regime. How is that espionage? The Egyptian military seems to have a broad definition. I wasted several minutes this morning thinking of analogies to accusing the president of a state of espionage. Accusing a professor of cheating on an exam he gave? Accusing the Pope of heresy? Other examples welcome.