A Blog by the Editor of The Middle East Journal

Putting Middle Eastern Events in Cultural and Historical Context

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Football Madness Continuing

UPDATES: If you believe the blogosphere, and the wilder media, an Egyptian has been arrested for espionage in Algeria; Egypt threatened Sudan that it would send its special forces to provide security for Egyptians in Khartoum after the match, and lots of other wild allegations. Let's everyvody cool off a little, okay?

[ORIGINAL POST]: I spoke too soon. The game may be over but the diplomatic flaps continue. Ambassadors are being summoned for protests, and Egypt's to Algiers has been called home for consultation; Sudan has also gotten into the protest act, and Algerian and Egyptian communities in Marseilles have clashed. FIFA is considering action against the Egyptian Football Association over the earlier attack on the Algerian players' bus in Cairo. Oh, and also this. Kal at The Moor Next Door reviews the international media coverage and finds it wanting, finding more Egyptians to quote than Algerians and generally showing ignorance about the Maghreb. (As a Maghrebi who's writing from Cairo in this post, he's well placed to comment.) On the other side, Al-Masry al-Youm offers a survey in English of the Egyptian media coverage of the aftermath. And El Koshary Today, a relatively new Egyptian attempt at The Onion-style parody quotes an imaginary sheikh as attributing the (first) Egyptian victory to prayer. (I don't think I'd previously linked to El Koshary (it's named for a popular Egyptian street food) but to those who know Egypt, they're sometimes right on target. Like any parody, sometimes they fall flat.

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