Friday, February 4, 2011

04 Feb 2011: Today's Democracy Now!


www.democracynow.org



Day of Departure: Massive Demonstrations Across Egypt Aim to Oust Mubarak. Sharif Abdel Kouddous Reports Live from Cairo

Hundreds of thousands of Egyptian pro-democracy protesters have returned to Cairo’s Tahrir Square in defiance of violent attacks from supporters of President Hosni Mubarak in the last two days. The New York Times reports the Obama administration has opened talks with Egyptian officials on Mubarak’s immediate resignation. The proposal under discussion would see Vice President Omar Suleiman lead a transitional government before elections later this year; however, Suleiman remains deeply unpopular in Egypt. Pro-democracy organizers have labeled today the "Day of Departure," a final push for Mubarak’s immediate resignation. The demonstrations immediately swelled at the end of Friday prayers. We speak to Democracy Now! senior producer Sharif Abdel Kouddous, who reports live from Tahrir Square. [includes rush transcript]
Eliminate the Witnesses: Committee to Protect Journalists Criticizes Mubarak’s Policy of Attacking and Silencing Journalists in Egypt

The Mubarak regime’s violent crackdown has included deliberate targeting of journalists covering the protests across Egypt. News outlets including Al Jazeera, CBS News, ABC News, Fox News, CNN, BBC, the Washington Post, the New York Times, Australian Broadcasting, Danish TV2 News and Swiss television have reported assaults, intimidation or arrests of their workers. We speak to Frank Smyth with the Committee to Protect Journalists, who reports there has been a record of 100 attacks on journalists, 30 detentions, 26 assaults, and eight cases of media equipment seized. “This is worst case of the most blatant violence against the press that I’ve seen in my 24 years or so reporting and my 10 years at CPJ,” Smyth says. “Clearly the Mubarak regime is responsible. They are implementing a policy to eliminate witnesses to what is occurring. It seems that the Mubarak regime is attempting to literally unplug Egypt from the world.” [includes rush transcript]
Video Report on the Battle for Tahrir: An Inside Look at How Pro-Democracy Activists Reclaimed Tahrir Square After Attacks by Mubarak Forces

On Thursday, pro-democracy activists ventured back to Tahrir Square, to reclaim the downtown Cairo public space, which had become a battleground in the effort to oust President Hosni Mubarak. Democracy Now! producers Sharif Abdel Kouddous and Hany Massoud walked through the streets, talking with Cairo residents—many who were injured from the attacks the day before—and witnessed the efforts to clean up the trash and rock-filled square while also organizing a system of grassroots resistance and community care programs to defend the square from pro-Mubarak forces who threatened to return.

Headlines

•Over a Million March in Day of Departure Rally in Egypt
•Report: U.S. Considers Proposal for Mubarak to Resign Immediately
•Pro-Mubarak Gangs Attack Scores of Journalists
•Egyptian State TV Broadcaster Resigns in Protest
•Algeria Promises to Lift State of Emergency
•Tens of Thousands March in Yemen
•McCain Compares Arab Pro-Democracy Movement to a "Virus"
•Under International Pressure, Haiti Announces Run-Off Candidates
•Global Food Prices Hit Record High
•Shell Oil Records $18.6 Billion Profit in 2010
•20,000 Vets and Military Personnel Lose Homes in Foreclosure Crisis
•Internal Documents: JPMorgan Chase Hid Doubts about Madoff
•Afghan Man Dies at Guantánamo
•Census: New Orleans Lost 1/3 of Population Since 2000

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