Not a ‘President’. Not an ‘ally’.

Source: Foreign Policy Research Institute

Author(s): Thomas O.Melia

Original Link:

Words matter. Choose them carefully.

At PEN America, our mission is to champion the freedom to write, recognizing the power of words to transform the world. Our mission is to unite writers of all kinds, including screenwriters, poets, novelists, essayists, journalists, and bloggers, to celebrate creative expression. Of course, we defend the democratic liberties that make free expression possible, so that all of us, each one of us, can choose our words with care—and also have them heard.

So I have been struck in recent days by the casual choice of words bandied about in discussion of the visit to the White House by Egyptian strongman Abdel Fattah al-Sisi. As expected, Mr. Sisi was warmly embraced in the Oval Office by Donald Trump, who said, “I think he’s doing a great job.” This despite tens of thousands of political prisoners in Egyptian jails, including at least 20 American citizens incarcerated on dubious charges. This despite his re-election a year ago with 97.08 percent of the vote in a process that was much more Napoleonic plebiscite than election, after potential challengers were obliged to stand down by state security agents. This despite Sisi’s current drive to re-write the Egyptian constitution (again) to cement his hold on power until at least the year 2034. This despite an ongoing crackdown on free speech that has targeted a wide range of writers.

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