A Blog by the Editor of The Middle East Journal

Putting Middle Eastern Events in Cultural and Historical Context

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Separated at Birth? Curious Coincidence if True: Mubarak and Tura Prison Born on Exact Same Day?

Following up on my note about Mubarak's birthday today: According to the Egyptian opposition newspaper Al-Shorouq, May 4, 1928 was not only the date of Husni Mubarak's birth, but also the date that Tura (Tora) prison was opened. (Link is in Arabic.) Tura has been the most notorious of political prisons under Nasser, Sadat, and Mubarak, and where many Mubarak cronies, and even his two sons, have been held in recent days. It's a notorious place among Egyptians.

If this is true it's an amazing coincidence, synchronicity and all that, and I'm amazed I hadn't heard this before: his most infamous prison was opened the same day he was born?  It's being repeated on the Internet, but I haven't found any independent confirmation. The account in the link of how it was founded when Wafdist Mustafa Nahhas was Interior Minister sounds circumstantial enough, though; really curious if true. (And it's on the Internet, so it must be true, right?) Anybody want to provide documentation, or are we witnessing the birth of an urban legend? Or did no one ever notice this before? Or is it disinformation?


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