The Coptic cause is not for sale

Lately I noticed that many self proclaimed Coptic leaders are acting suspiciously. In order to clarify facts to our readers and Copts,

I decided to analyze the facts which occurred before and during the last Mubarak visit to Washington. My intention is neither to criticize any one action nor to give advice to anyone; my only intention is to bring certain facts to light allowing each one to know and decide for themselves.

I am also not interested in comparing any efforts made by any one person against another. Furthermore, no names will be mentioned in the respect of privacy and in order to avoid foolish conversations that would distract my intention from focusing on the main goal, the Coptic cause.

A short preamble is needed to give better understanding. Last year during the barbaric attacks against the Abu Fana Monastery, I decided to plan a demonstration against the Egyptian regime to unveil its real face to western people. During a meeting with other Copts, I was informed that someone else planned to protest in Washington D.C. In order to avoid any competition and believing that all of us are working for the same goal, I decided to release the date and location after Washington’s demonstration took place.

Once the Washington demonstration was ended, I announced that Voice of the Copts would protest against the Egyptian regime within respect to the monks at Abu Fana on the day of the celebration of the military coup of 1952.

As I arrived to the scene of the protest on July 23, 2008, the law enforcement officers responsible for safety informed me that certain members of the Egyptian consul contacted their office numerous times hoping to withdraw the demonstration permit. After some time, a group of Copts arrived to the location led by a well known self pointed Coptic leader. I was surprised to observe that the group’s intention was to damage the demonstration. The only goal of that group and its leader was to stop us from protesting against the regime and they were apathetic to the Monks that were kidnapped, tortured, and beaten in barbaric a way. I chose to avoid that group and their methods leaving to them the upper hand. Unfortunately, I realized at that moment that the Egyptian regime had succeeded in infiltrating Coptic groups in the Diaspora as well as in Egypt, using "leaders" to control and manipulate them for the benefit of the regime.

Various evidence and actions led me to believe that what the regime was not able to do in its own, Coptic self-proclaimed leaders succeeded in doing.

However, I refused to accept the idea that among us there are traitors. I then tried to take my thinking in another direction, which was that men may have a complex of inferiority, being not involved as the organizer.

A few months ago when Mubarak first scheduled his visit to the United States, I contacted the same person. I did that for two reasons, the first was to see how that person would act and if he is a real Copt fighting for the cause. The second reason was to coordinate with other groups considering this Mubarak visit as a great opportunity to bring the Coptic cause one more time to the streets and inside the United States media.

The response that was given to me was "Wait, do not do anything now, I will contact you". Meanwhile, information was flooding Coptic sites concerning a huge demonstration upcoming in Washington.

At that time, I noticed with great disappointment that two Coptic groups were planning to protest against the Egyptian regime, and that they may be against each other too. Information was flooding from various directions concerning a meeting formed from the best and more knowledgeable of the Copts self pointed leaders to meet in Virginia. Other Copts were planning to show these Copts that without them nothing would happen and in addition, the Egyptian regime had sent their smartest political personnel to make some deal with those leaders.

The Coptic Church that for almost 1400 years wad never involved in policy, was now welcoming the Egyptian dictator in the land of freedom, forgetting the suffering and oppression of its people in Egypt.

The self pointed Coptic leader from New Jersey never called, and announced that he would be leading a great demonstration in Washington.

Mubarak canceled his trip due to family death, no demonstration took place.

In and about the second half of July 2009, information indicated that Mubarak would be visiting United States by the middle of August 2009. A few meetings took place in Washington and elsewhere between Egyptian regime messengers and various Coptic leaders. One of those meetings was held inside a Church!

Up to the end of July, no one was talking about demonstrations or welcoming the Egyptian ruler. Since my organization is not part of the big Coptic organization I decided to approach someone who was also not welcomed to these meetings. As if for some reason those in the meeting considered themselves the only authority that could talk or act on behalf of Copts. My decision was based on one simple reason which is the Copts’ voice has to be heard in the White House during Mubarak’s meeting with Obama, and I would cooperate with any one to achieve that goal. I was sure that I was taking a great risk, especially after listening to a few conversations with a few people.

On August 4th, 2009 Voice of the Copts announced the intention to demonstrate against Mubarak’s regime in favor of the oppressed Copts and others in Egypt. Here is the link: (http://voiceofthecopts.org/en/press_release/rally_in_support_of_egyptian_coptic_christians_in_egypt.html)One important thing to be noticed that until the moment of this press release no Coptic organization was planning to demonstrate. In fact, when we applied for the permit, we were sure that the meeting with President Obama would take place on the 18, since other non-Coptic organizations had requested and obtained a certain location next to the White House.

Some self proclaimed Coptic leader went to request authorization, but such was denied.

A few days later, information published on all Coptic sites indicated that a coalition of self pointed Coptic leaders would organize along with other Egyptians to be present at the White House to protest.

Days went by with conflicted information, which groups would be going, where people would be coming from. My point was we would be going also if there were only three of us. The number is not important; action is the only thing that counts.

A few days prior to the demonstration, I discussed with my partners the possibility to generate a press conference to better explain the reason for what we are planning to do.

Informing the media in a normal way, we had our press conference taking place at 9:30 am on August 17th one day ahead of the demonstration.

On the same evening, one of our group members asked me to welcome the famous self pointed leader that one year back ruled the demonstration mentioned before. I assured him that anyone was welcome to be part of this demonstration.

The group arrived from New Jersey around 11:00am and immediately I noticed a great change. In fact, prior to their arrival the people gathered were in great discipline. Suddenly the behavior soon changed. In order to avoid foolish conversation, I stood aside observing their new behavior, then, I noticed that some of them were ruined certain signs. I questioned that person for his strange behavior, the answer was those signs are against Mubarak, I asked him again, why did he come and why is he standing with us?

I found myself threatened surrounded by various so called COPTIC LEADERS. I remember what occurred a year before, and I could not allow any one to damage our peaceful demonstration.

The police was called and the supposed leaders were asked to leave the scene, and I realized that there was also a traitor in our group.

I was hoping that what others had said about him was wrong, but when I saw him following the same group that tried to harm our peaceful intent, I regret the time spent with him.

What I reported above is to make those who read this analysis reflect and start to analyze the actions of those who are so good in speaking on TV and radio shows, who self-pointed sponsor of Copts in and out side of Egypt.

To those I say, you go on your show became star on global TV and radio, but you are in notice, THE COPTIC CAUSE IS NOT FOR SALE.

Voice of the Copts will not allow any one to mercantile with the blood of Copts, raping the ladies, and discriminating against them.

Finally, I am sending a message to those who are advertising for a Coptic Congress.

Sir, Copts do not need a congress maneuvered by the Egyptian regime.

Copts need to live in their home land as humans with all human rights.

Voice of the Copts does not bargain, if you have a serious plan to carry in regard to our people, we may welcome it, otherwise you may carry on your own talk show that various self pointed leaders are good at, we are not planning to change our plan.

A plan that regain Copts the right to live as citizen in their own homeland not a plan to silence them.

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