Adam Sandler in Egypt and Israel

Adam Sandler in Egypt and Israel and the 80 lashes of movie director Enad El-Dighaidy.
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 The  movie,”You Don’t Mess with the Zohan”, see here and here  starring Adam Sandler stirs up the ban ponds in Egypt and other Arab countries. It is hard to believe that in the era of web 2.0, when there is no hidding from the Internet-torrents-P2P and other media resources, that a ban can conceal a movie in the unseen unheard or unspoken. 
Adam Sandler

Adam Sandler

Now the ‘Zohan’ is a ludicrous movie about a Mossad agent.The whole storie is about laughing and having fun at the expense of-and in some way, ridiculing the Israeli intelligence establishment:

…”Pic, in which Sandler plays a former Mossad agent who escapes to New York and ends up working in a Palestinian-American woman’s hair salon, has been banned by censors in Egypt, Lebanon and the U.A.E.

‘Zohan’ has already been released in Israel through local distrib Matalon, where it has been one of the year’s biggest hits bringing in over 200,000 admissions. ‘There wasn’t any controversy over the subject matter,’ says company topper Amnon Matalon. ‘Israelis like to laugh at themselves.’

While censorship has eased slightly across the Arab world in recent years, a number of subject matters remain taboo. Anything attacking religion is generally a no-no everywhere in the region, while sex is a problem in the more conservative Gulf states, although not an issue in socially liberal Lebanon. The country, for example, was the only Arab country to allow the theatrical release of Sex and the City.” see here

Adam Sandler and Emmanuelle Chriqui

Adam Sandler and Emmanuelle Chriqui

Well to ban a movie about the Israeli-Arab conflict, even though the film’s makers insist it is not biased and claiming: “We’re equal opportunities offenders.” is nothing new. But look at what is really going on in Egypt on this very issue of religion, sex and politic.

I quote here from the article “The curse of the Hesba lawsuits” ( from the Libanaise site Menassat):

“Egyptian courts are being flooded these days with so-called ‘Hesba’ lawsuits targeting outspoken writers, film makers and poets. According to Islamic law, anyone can file a Hesba lawsuit if they believe God has been insulted. But some suggest that money, fame and political repression play an equally important part in the recent rise of Hesba cases.”

So not only Israeli movies are targetst of bans and other harrassements . Egyptian domestic art makers are ‘welcome’ victims of the same stratagems.

…”The latest figure to get tangled up in the murky waters of Hesba law suits is movie director Enad El-Dighaidy, whose film, Diaries of a Teenage Girl, has attracted the wrath of an attorney affiliated with Egypt’s ruling NDP party.

The unnamed lawyer is said to have vast experience in Hesba lawsuits and has asked the Sheikh of Egypt’s highest religious council, Al Azhar, to punish the female director with 80 lashes for defaming the country.

Sources told MENASSAT that the same lawyer has sought similar punishment against an Egyptian actress who appeared unveiled in a film”….see here forthe full article.

What in the plot of the ‘Diaries of a Teenage Girl’  upstiers the ‘imagination’ of the Hesba lawsuiters: 

Tunisian actress Hind Sabri and director Inas al-Daghidi

Tunisian actress Hind Sabri and director Inas al-Daghidi

        …”Inas El Deghidi, one of the most fearless directors in Egyptian cinema today, tackles issues affecting Egyptian women in a populist and non-doctrinaire manner. Her film takes us into a girl ‘s private life of boys, parties, friends, and more boys. The tragedy in the film starts with premarital sex, which leaves girls unsuitable for marriage. Hymen restoration is one of the most popular forms of cosmetic surgery performed in Egypt—everybody does it, but nobody talks about it. Breaking this code of silence brought El Deghidi condemnation from Egyptian moral pundits, but also popular success. Tunisian actress Hind Sabri stars as the innocent Gamila, who imagines herself Cleopatra seeking love from her Antonio. Her wild, spoiled friend Nancy schemes to destroy them. Behind this romantic teen melodrama, El Deghidi encodes a critique of the whole system of sexual relations in Egyptian society. “Egyptian society does not permit women love, emotions or errors. The man has all the rights. I want to deal with this paradox.”—Inas El Deghidi. (115 min) see here.
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Western audiences will find the teenage girl’s dreams sweet, romantic and a little callow. Ah, youth..But in Egyptian cultural currency this is indeed worth 80 lashes.. For more of this ‘currency’ see here

Emmanuelle Chriqui ("Zohan" with Adam Sandler)

Emmanuelle Chriqui (

 

 

 

The ‘Swap Prisoner’ as a Ready Made

I ‘admire’ the Israeli jail system, specializing in producing healthy educated terrorist. Samir Kuntar is such a product. Manufactured in 29 years of precision work, he serve as a  ‘ready made’ graduate prisoners swap candidate, holding a bachelor’s degree in social studies and humanities… for a killer it has certain
advantages to know something about humanities..
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‘On the shelf Kuntar’

 The Kuwaiti newspaper “Al Watan” in an article “Their POW and ours” (by Fouad AlـHashem) tells the tale of such a meticulous production line.
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…”Lebanese prisoner, Samir AlـQuntar, spent 29 years in the Israeli prisons. No ears or hands were amputated and no rape was reported to have taken place. Three meals were offered to him on a daily basis and, he was generously, allowed to read newspapers and watch television. He consequently learned Hebrew and joined an Israeli open university as a distant learner.
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Published photos of AlـQuntar after his release showed that he enjoyed good health. I”m sure that he is happy to see his mother and his younger brother who was only one year old when AlـQuntar was captured by the Israelis.
 
Now, he can start a new life. He can go to a restaurant in Barmana area to enjoy delicious meals, smoke shisha and have a toast for the Israelis who treated him better than Saddam Hussein and his Baath party.
 
AlـQuntar should thank God a lot because Lebanon neighbors Israel and not Iraq ـ a country once ruled by the oppressive Saddam regime. If AlـQuntar had been imprisoned in Iraq, he wouldn”t have returned to his country alive. He would be in a plastic bag like our Kuwaiti POWs.
 
In 1992, Saddam Hussein and his party killed 600 innocent Kuwait POWs. Although those innocent people didn”t attack Iraq or kill Iraqis, they were tortured in Iraqi prisons. They had to eat stale bread and drink dirty water. Of course they weren”t allowed to join a university in Iraq. No court orders were issued against them. They were simply shot and buried in mass graves in the Iraqi desert.
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I’d like to congratulate our brothers on Lebanon on AlـQuntar”s release and also we would like to express our utter envy for neighboring Israel.see here.”…
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So Fouad AlـHashemin, the senior journalist at the Kuwaiti newspaper Al-Watan, envy the sentenced for an on life imprisonment in Israel: it is a recipe of longevity and good education. And if you are a premium swap candidate, then the reception with fanfares as an hero, is the ultimate  proof of the manufactured swap product quality.
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‘On the shelf Barghouti’
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Another on the shelf ‘ready made’ premium swap prisoner is Marwan Barghouti. He live in healthy condition in the Hadarin jail. From inside the jail, he directs a network of directives, distributed openly under the watchful eyes of the Israeli prison warden.  If his swapping will pay a good prize to both sides, then Gilad Shalit is considered as a candidate for the swap and Marwan Barghouti a candidate to be the future Palestinian leader, the latter, manufactured with the same prescision tools as Samir Kuntar.
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Don’t shaving your stomach in Bahrein

    GIRL  

        

The following story is perhaps a curious one and could serve as a comic scene in a Hollywood movie.  

Hernia man cleared of suicide bid. 
 A man, who was reported as an attempted suicide case, was actually shaving his stomach and accidentally cut open stitches from a hernia operation.The Indian was reported to the Salmaniya Medical Complex by his roommate after he was seen bleeding excessively at their apartment after coming out of the bathroom, sources told the GDN. “He had a hernia operation a few days ago and when he tried to shave off the hair around his operation he cut open his stitches,” they said.   He was taken by ambulance to the hospital for treatment, where doctors thought that he tried committing suicide.  The case was reported to police and when the man and his roommate were questioned it was confirmed that it was an accident.”, see here .

  If we leave the Hollywood analogy and remember that the “hernia men” was suspected of committing suicide – a sin against Islam faith, and if so, reported for a police intervention, then the following ’Questions and Answers’ interview trow more details on the story. 

Q. It is said that suicide is forbidden in Islam and that the person who commits suicide is destined to go to hell. Suppose a person is suffering from a severe case of depression, or some other mental disease. Should such a person commit suicide, will he also go to hell?

A. It is true that suicide is strictly forbidden, because it is an affront to God. It is like a person saying to God: “You have given me life and I am taking it away.” This is what is meant by the sacred Hadith in which God is quoted as saying of the one who commits suicide: “My servant has precipitated My will with regard to himself! Therefore, I am forbidding him entry into heaven.” But this Hadith applies to a person in full control of his faculties, suffering no overpowering adversity and having a reasonable life. If such a person commits suicide, then may be God will not allow him in heaven. (see here)

  From here on, the way is open to ask, what are the Islamic suicide bombers, blowing up people in Baghdad, Beirut, London, Manhattan, Jerusalem? Are they in full control of their faculties?  Or are they suffering from some mental disease like brainwashing?

What has the  Islam to say to day about their premeditated suicides?

By Patty Chang,"Chez les Grecs".

By Patty Chang,"Chez les Grecs".

 Source artist Patty Chang see here , Guggenheim 2008 Hugo Boss nominee see here

Shirt

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 Dogs Stories in Tehran.

Do storie

It is tempting to rebut every move done by the Iranian regime. The dog prison story in Theran, viewed trough my western eyes as dog friends,  is a lunatic move. But for the Islamic state owning dogs is a highly controversial topic throughout Islam. Many people state that dog ownership is dirty and demeaning to the values of the Islamic religion. In fact many clerics have gone so far as to say that dog ownership is “morally depraved”. So the headline “Iran mullahs to arrest dogs (Oct 2, 2007) is from their point of view, a  legitimate way to get rid of what they see as our (Western) nefaste influence on their Islamic beliefs. Perhaps I need advice from  Anthropologist in War Zones to get a more balanced view of the daily perilous life under the Ayatollah regime.