Monday,28 May, 2018
Current issue | Issue 1345, (18 - 24 May 2017)
Monday,28 May, 2018
Issue 1345, (18 - 24 May 2017)

Ahram Weekly


Signs of celebrating the advent of the holy month of Ramadan have started to show everywhere. Shops are stocking Ramadan goods and the famous metal Ramadan lanterns are decorating homes, mosques, shops and streets. Ramadan will start on 27 May.

“I apologise to the reader on two counts: for tackling an unimportant subject that has imposed itself on us after Sheikh Salem Abdel-Gelil’s statement on a programme called ‘Muslims Ask’; and for calling an Al-Azhar scholar silly. But unfortunately there is no other description. I won’t go into the details of what he said [but I will] recall the words of the Grand Sheikh of Al-Azhar Ahmed Al-Tayeb who said, ‘It is not appropriate to talk about religions’ [and reiterate] the necessity of renewing religious discourse. ”
Osama Al-Ghazali Harb, Al-Ahram

Anwar Wagdi

Anwar Wagdi: A cinematic legend

The prominent actor, director, screenwriter and film producer Anwar Wagdi died 62 years ago on Sunday, but his rich cinematic legacy is still very much alive. Despite dying at the age of 44, Wagdi was prolific and productive. He made his debut as early as 1935 with The Defence, starring Youssef Wahbi. Wagdi was then a member of the Ramses company, in which Wahbi was the leading actor. By 1939, he has established his name as a skilful actor in Kamal Selim’s masterpiece Al-Azima (or “The Will”). His role in Intisar Al-Shabab (or “The Triumph of Youth) by Ahmed Badrakhan in 1941 further cemented his reputation.

In 1945, Wagdi married the legendary singer-actress Laila Mourad, and together they formed the famous cinema duo making landmark films like Laila, Daughter of the Poor, Laila, Daughter of the Rich, My Heart is My Guide, Ember, The Flirtation of Girls, Soulmate, and The Aristocrat. Wagdi also entered the film production field in that year. In the early 1950s he made his magnificent discovery of Fayrouz, a child prodigy with whom he performed hit films like Yasmine and Dahab. In the last five years of his life, his acting skills became more subtle and mature. He starred in very important movies like The Count of Monte Cristo, directed by Barakat, and Raya and Sakina and The Monster by Salah Abu Seif.He died on 14 May 1954 after a brief battle with illness.

A centre for enlightenment and culture

“The choice of Dr Mustafa Al-Fiqi as head of the Bibliotheca Alexandrina caused me and many a man of letters much happiness. That happiness stemmed from the fact that he deserves to fill that position because of his enlightened thinking, outstanding culture and various skills qualifying him to take steps to make this important place a centre of science, culture and information in Egypt, the region and the world.”
Mohamed Barakat, Al-Akhbar

“Dr Mustafa Al-Fiqi can make Alexandria a cultural capital and a centre of enlightenment. He has all the skills that allow him to do this, the most important of which is the ability to communicate. Kudos to Dr Ismail Serageddin, who faced difficult conditions in the last few years which negatively affected his performance and took away from the glamour of the Bibliotheca [but] congratulations to Al-Fiqi. We await the vision of the thinker and the imprints of the man of letters.”
Karam Gabr, Al-Youm Al-Sabei
“We want the Bibliotheca to develop the mechanisms initiated by Serageddin and have a busy schedule of symposiums, concerts and manuscript and antique exhibitions. We want it to play a role in preserving the historic buildings of Alexandria. And Dr Al-Fiqi is capable of doing that job.”
Amr Abdel-Samie, Al-Ahram

Egyptian parliament

More challenges to future generations

“The 2017-2018 general budget, which the government submitted to parliament last week, shows that the overall interest of internal and external debt has reached LE380 billion in comparison to LE292 billion last year. That means an increase of nearly LE100 billion. A bleak future awaits the coming generations. They will live to pay back debts that are likely to increase given the competition among ministries and government bodies to secure more loans, which they consider an achievement.”
Mohamed Mekki, Al-Shorouk


More participation is necessary

“When Macron was praised for winning the French presidential election at the age of 39 on social media, some noted that president Gamal Abdel-Nasser became president at the age of 34…  However, generally speaking, the Arab mind at present tends to prefer giving responsibility to older generations on the pretext that they are more experienced. Although the Egyptian constitution clearly stipulates that the young should be encouraged to participate in public life and voluntary work, this is hardly implemented on the ground. I wish parliament could issue a law that guarantees genuine measures for more youth participation.”
Ahmed Abdel-Zaher, Al-Watan

Middle East

Amgad Rasmi, Asharq Al-Awsat


“Regarding the description of Salaheddin as the ‘meanest’ person in history, this is not the kind of language historians use. [Superlatives] are not used by historians; they sound like café gossip.”
Mohamed Afifi

“We enter into a state of fear when we hear views that differ from those we are brought up to believe. This applies to what’s been said about Salaheddin. It is very difficult to change a belief or a conviction. And if anyone tries to convince us that this belief is fake, we find thousands of ways to prove that it isn’t so. Our belief is usually built on the customs and traditions of society or on our fathers’ beliefs.”
Sameh Fayez


China Xinhua News @XHNews
IMF release of 2nd aid tranche shows confidence in Egypt’s economy.

Money Channel NY @moneychannelnyc
“Egypt Still Has Work to Do Despite Glowing IMF Review-Economists.”

The CEELI Institute @CEELI_Institute
Judges from Egypt’s State Council have defied a new law that gives their president power over judicial appointments.

James Hall @hallaboutafrica
Constitutional crisis in Egypt as judiciary asserts its independence against President Al-Sisi and his legislature.

LE383.5 million for the needy

Egyptian Essence: LE383.5 million for the needy

“In the field of social support, the Nasser Social Bank gave some 1,300,000 citizens requiring help LE383.5 million. LE105 million of that amount was earmarked for easy and interest-free loans, LE17.5 million as aid for poor families and LE1.4 million for financing micro projects.”

add comment

  • follow us on