After the disaster that was Mohamed Morsi, Egypt’s erstwhile leader, it is tempting to dump all over the current regime as well in a plague-on-both-your-houses tantrum. Morsi’s rule was repressive, mean-spirited, pusillanimous, disastrous for the country’s Copt population, who were terrorized under his rule, and disastrous, too, for the press, which was ordered, under the new Morsi Constitution, to “adhere to sensible, professional, administrative, and economic standards.”
Personally, I do not know exactly what those enumerated media duties entail—they seem fairly vague from this distance—but one other little addendum helps somewhat to clarify matters. Under Morsi, “insulting the prophets” became a criminal offense. In fact, Morsi’s Muslim Brotherhood allies went to work on that little twist to the Egyptian Constitution right away, filing criminal complaints against those media outlets who supplied what they called “wrong information” or those reporters who went in for “insulting the president.” President, prophets: they all had, it turns out, tender egos.