Thursday,23 May, 2019
Current issue | Issue 1266, (15 - 21 October 2015)
Thursday,23 May, 2019
Issue 1266, (15 - 21 October 2015)

Ahram Weekly

Courage and Will

He may not be well known in our circles, which is a pity! Stern and bespectacled, he reminds you of your long-lost uncle, but, when the prestigious Wall Street Journal describes him as: ”perhaps the most powerful journalist in America”, it would be worth our while to know George Will.

We shall venture to introduce him because his powerful voice alone made sense of the truth of our violent ‘sea of troubles’, we are still opposing.

While other experts, politicians and critics---those sharks of verbal scorn and slime---produced empty words from empty brains, George Will possessed the faculty of penetrating, diving deep into our troubled seas and made sense of this mass of incongruous nonsense.

For the last four years Egypt has been subjected to denunciation and condemnation for embracing a ‘military overthrow’ of a “legitimately elected democratic government”.  Unconvinced, George Will was intensely reading, learning, reviewing and analysing every aspect of our circumstances. Obviously he knew of the venom of the Monstrous Brotherhood.  He is well-read with a superior, analytical intellect. Courageous and independent, he puts forward the naked truth, backed by knowledge, facts and his steady flow of sanity and seriousness.

Following President Al-Sisi’s address to the Islamic leaders in January, where he called for a religious review against extremism and terrorism… ”which has become a source of concern, danger and devastation across the world and has to be reformed”.   Will was galvanised.  He raised his polished pen and voice to praise Al-Sisi:

“Sisi occupies an office once occupied by Anwar Sadat who was murdered by Islamic extremists… This was an act of tremendous bravery by Sisi and if the Nobel Peace Prize Committee is looking for someone who plausibly deserves it, they could start right there.”

It was a stunning admission from the American press, with an audacity that only George Will is capable of, and why not? He just called Pope Francis: “a false prophet who embodies sanctity but comes trailing clouds of sanctimony”.  This was the title of his column in the Washington Post which has been syndicated to 450 newspapers, for the past 32 years.

 Who would dare rebuke the Pope? George Will! The Pope embraces ideas “impeccably fashionable, demonstrably false and deeply reactionary”, he explains. ”They would devastate the poor on whose behalf he purports to speak.” Dear, dear, what do Catholics think, Christians, the whole world? Will cares little about them. He cares intensely about the truth, his truth, deliberate, researched and intellectually ruminated.  

Will believes that Al-Sisi’s message “needs to be amplified by the American government as well as by all Western governments fighting terrorism. Sisi needs to be celebrated worldwide.”

The sublime influence of his courage, defiance and wisdom, has influenced a few Republican voices who echoed his thoughts. Yet we remain largely misjudged and misrepresented, by the West. Consider Obama rushing to congratulate (MB) Morsi on his election, but has yet to congratulate President Al-Sisi. Will’s honourable and impartial evaluation, his sanity and sensibility, carries far more weight than a call from Obama.

Al-Sisi, a man of peace and true faith, fighting daily Islamic fascism, is strongly endorsed by George Will as the premier candidate for the Nobel Peace Prize. His name was submitted by Nader Soliman, founder of the Christian Youth Movement, who cited multiple reasons why “Al-Sisi is far more worthy than anything Obama ever dreamed of”.  But a committee that awards Obama the Nobel Peace Prize, for literally doing …Nothing…could not reward ‘a military strong man’ for striving for peace. What was Al-Sadat then and other American war-loving presidents who won the award?

Alfred Nobel must be twisting and turning in his grave, for the Norwegian committee has often made a mockery of his wishes, by their strange choices. Fiercely criticised for their misappropriation of Nobel funds, the committee has never responded. It tells a staggering tale of infirmity and proclivity, and thereby the committee has totally lost its credibility.

Who are those Norwegian parliamentary members who appoint themselves and constantly demonstrate bad judgement and bad taste. We seek not their names but their brains; their ability and prejudices.          

In Will’s world, President Al-Sisi would have won… but this is not Will’s world… sane and fair! It is a bizarre and farcical world we and Will must endure.

George Will, PhD, Pulitzer Prize Winner, graduated from Trinity College, Oxford University, and Princeton, specialising in philosophy, politics and economics.  He taught political philosophy at Harvard, and has an uncontrollable passion for baseball.  As great a speaker as he is a writer, he is known for his erudite vocabulary and allusions to political philosophers.  He sits on many TV panels, at NBC, ABC, FOX etc… He has written several best-selling books from politics to baseball.

Yes, indeed he is worth knowing. Behind his stern and aloof expression, his intellect and wisdom reveal integrity and substance. He often seems severe, cold and keen, as if disapproving of less intellectual associates, but his cordial notes reveal tolerance and grace. A faint irritability with flimsy, featherbrained ideas, he is far too decent to show more than a gentle touch of humourous reproach.

George Will was the first political analyst of any consequence to understand the strife and struggle of the people of Egypt and their President Abdel-Fattah Al-Sisi. His endorsement of Al-Sisi as the worthy candidate for the Nobel Peace Prize is far more valuable than the Prize itself.

 “To know that we know what we know, and that we do not know what we do not know, that is true knowledge”
Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862)   

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