29 December 2005
An Afghan man washes his face in the river on the eastern edge of Kabul before going to evening prayers Wednesday March 9, 2005.
An Indian man, covered in red dye, is ambushed from behind by a green powder throwing friend as people in the old city of Delhi celebrate Holi, the Hindu festival of colors on March 26, 2005. The festival, originally held to celebrate the fertility of the land, is also associated with the immortal love of Hindu God Krishna and Radha.
A Nepalese woman passes by others' apartment doors and windows in the Katmandu Valley town of Bhaktapur April 10, 2005
Unemployed Afghan men wait with their tools on a Kabul street corner_ one of several gathering places in the capital city for day laborers looking for work_ in March 2005. Aid agencies in Kabul estimated an unemployment rate of as high as 50 percent in Kabul in 2005.
A Pakistani man holds his injured child in his arms as they are evacuated by in Pakistani army helicopter from a refugee camp in Balakot to be taken to a hospital in Islamabad October 13, 2005
Sabir Hussein Shah holds his nine-year-old son Zeeshan while he is treated after having his arm amputated at a field hospital in Muzaffarabad, Pakistan October 30, 2005.
Pakistani earthquake survivors perform their evening prayers on the former rooftop of a flattened mosque in Balakot, Pakistan October 14, 2005.
A Pakistani earthquake survivor shivers in the rain as he waits outside a Pakistani army aid distribution site hoping in vain for a tent or a blanket in Balakot, Pakistan on October 15, 2005.
UGANDA'S CHILDREN IN CRISIS — A child cries while having his temperature taken as he is examined at the Paediatric Infectious Diseases Clinic (PIDC) of Mulago Hospital in Kampala, Uganda May 13, 2005. Triage is the entry point for medical visits and this is where growth and develop monitor and vital signs are taken and documented at each monthly medical visit. Temperature is an important vital sign at the PIDC in Uganda as high temperature can be a sign of an HIV-related infection or of malaria. EDS NOTE: Names withheld for reasons of confidentiality.
DEATH OF POPE JOHN PAUL II — Nuns form a line to take communion during funeral services for Pope John Paul II in St. Peter's Square at the Vatican, Friday April 8, 2005.
"Mozambique: a decade of peace between poverty and dream" July 2005
Maputo. Matola district. Lidia is 18 years old. She is Hiv positive, receiving treatment thanks to the DREAM program. She has a 11 months daughter and is again pregnant. Her dream is to find a job for her husband and have enough money to support her children. Actually in Mozambique on a population of about twenty millions people, there are one and a half million people infected with AIDS with a contagious rate that in some areas hovers around 30 per cent, 600,000 orphans, and only 12,000 patients receiving antiretroviral treatment; of those about 5000 are being treated thanks to the DREAM project of the Sant'Egidio Community.
1st David Guttenfelder, Associated Press
2nd Smiley Pool, The Dallas Morning News
3rd Massimo Mastrorillo, freelance
26 December 2005
Sculptures are displayed on Patong beach during a ceremony to mark the one year anniversary of the tsunami in Phuket southern of Thailand. I had reserved to go to Phuket from 17-29 Dec 2004, this would have been my 5th consecutive visit I cancelled my reservation on the 12th of December. My hotel room was ground floor 40 meters from the sea! At 8 AM I would have been probably asleep :) Was that my fate?
03 October 2005
12 September 2005
Even the President got his finger marked :)
The disadvantage of this indelible pink ink is that on the night of election you could easily tell who voted and who did not!!! At 23:00 I went to a coffee shop to meet with friends, in the whole place out of maybe 40 eligible voters there were only 6 or 7 guys who voted!!!! It is a disgrace.
Overall the elections went fine, yes many are saying that there were violations, lets agree and assume the elections were fair without a single violation, would we be celebrating the rise of a new Egyptian president? Who are we kidding, definitely not Mubarak was a sure winner probably not in such a landslide, but he would have won the elections anyway.
I have to be honest and admit something though; I am ashamed to say that I did not vote. I really wanted to but the problem was that I did not have a voting card (yes I know, this is the lame excuse that everyone is using), but I do not have a national number card “Rakam Kaoumy”. It was only at 22:30 that a friend told me I could have voted with my regular ID card in the Dokki polling station as a with my old ID but this was said at 22:30 and the voting was over by 22:00, it was too late!!!! I promise that I will go issue a voting card in November so I can vote in the parliament election.
Anyway Mubarak won by 88.5% my vote wouldn't have changed a thing after all, for 2 reasons. I did not know who to vote for? I was going to vote as a joke for Mr. Sabahy this 91 year old candidate who wanted all Egyptian men to wear the Fez and a national costume, he also said if he won, he would give up his post to Mubarak, he also said that he himself will vote for Mubarak??!!! He is totally fucked up :) Why the hell is he running if he is willing to give his presidential seat to Mubarak????? Don't ask me, I have no idea!!! So voting for Sabahy was an indirect way to vote for Mubarak.
This election itself is not important the important elections would be the coming parliamentary elections, as well as the coming presidential elections in 6 years time. Mubarak is now 77 years old I do not think he will run again 6 years from now?!!!! Hopefully the different parties will manage to prepare strong candidates for the 2011 election. I think the 2011 election will be the real presidential election in Egypt. I will make sure to vote then :)
The participation in the voting was very weak only 23% of the eligible voters voted. In my opinion it shows in a way how people are not used to elections and how the majority of the population is so passive that they don’t really give a shit who is ruling the country, or they have totally lost faith, I don't know how to read this figure?
The cool thing though is that allot of people are now determined to get voting cards and to be active voters, and this itself is a huge change.
10 September 2005
"Thirty years is not too much. Hosni Mubarak has projects to complete," said Saida el-Dien, a 56-year-old housewife waving her darkly pink stained finger around to emphasize her point. "I'll vote for him again in 2011 and 2021."
Photo courtsey of Reuters
08 September 2005
I just learned today that New Orleans sits below sea level, the big debate in the USA now is why spend billions of dollars to rebuild a city that sits below sea level? Knowing that Hurricane Katrina generated a storm surge - with water levels higher than a two-story building and storm waves cresting more than 50 feet above sea level.
An American friend of mine sent me an email saying: “always wondered why anyone would build a large city below sea level. I think it will be interesting to see if they rebuild it there and if so under what circumstances...They need to bring in a lot of fill dirt to get the city 15 feet or so higher than it is right now. Maybe if they brought in 40 feet of dirt everyone could have a basement!!” LOL!!! He is always been sarcastically funny :)
You know what is amazing about this Katrina Hurricane? Some unbelievable things are happening. Today I was listening to BBC Radio driving to work I was really surprised. Of course I should be surprised, I have every right to do so. Listen to what they said; Allot of countries are donating money and aid to the USA such as: Afghanistan 100K $, Sri Lanka 25K $ (Can they feed their own people??!!!). Other countries like India 5 Million $, Thailand, ANGOLA, DJIBOUTI!!!! (Angola & Djibouti? But they are bloody poor?!) On the other hand the United Arab Emirates donated 100 Million $, and Kuwait 500 Million $??!!!! (I wonder how much did these Arab countries donate to their Arab neighbors, or in crisis like in Darfur, or the hunger breakout in Niger?) In the newspaper yesterday there was an article on the front page saying that Egypt has created an aerial bridge to transport food and medical aid to the USA??!!! (Do you believe that Egypt who is getting an annual Aid from the USA is sending food and medicines?) Also today in the Radio the big question was will the US accept the donations offered by Iran and Cuba??! Yesterday on the Radio a Russian government official was complaining that the American government are not being cooperative and they are delaying the Russian aids to arrive on time, no one from the American side is telling the Russians on which airport should they use to deliver the food and medical supplies?
I don't know?!! When you hear all that you realize that all governments are full of crap. That bureaucracy is every where, and it is huge obstacle that we have to find a way to over take. Who could ever imagine that the United States of America will be receiving aid from a country like Afghanistan?! Does that make any sense to you? I can not digest it. Sri Lanka has donated Twenty Five Thousand Dollars to the USA???!! I think the amount is trivial but .... I don't even know what to say?!
07 September 2005
06 September 2005
After a long succession of unelected pharaohs, kings and dictators, tomorrow as Egyptians we will have a choice for the first time in our country’s 7000 years history. Tomorrow we will caste our votes in the first-ever multi candidate presidential election. Please Participate!!!!
In Arabic it sounds so much better; it rhymes really well. It is funny, I like it :)
05 September 2005
04 September 2005
03 September 2005
02 September 2005
01 September 2005
31 August 2005
Last Saturday I went to Alexandria with a friend of mine, she is a photographer and she wanted to shoot pictures of the typical Alex public beaches. I guess the idea was to catch the Egyptian Holiday makers beach fashion. What people wear going to the beach, even while swimming is remarkable. Allot of women are veiled with full make up.
I found this picture on an Egyptian Blog unfortunately I can not remember which one but they tackled the same issue of how veiled women swim fully dressed in Egypt. The above picture I think is taken in a pool somewhere in Sinai. You can see 2 veiled women and a topless tourist :) Welcome to Egypt the country of “Ultimate Contradictions”.
The Blog mentioned that since they published this picture the number of hits soared.
Actually On Stanley Beach we found 3 Moroccan ladies in bikini, we asked them to pause with the fully dressed male & females for a nice contrast pictures but they were camera shy and turned us down.
Definitely the picture above is much better than what we achieved in Alex :) Chapeau!!!
30 August 2005
I watched the new Adel Imam movie “Al Sifara Fee Al Imara” (The Embassy is in the Building). Like the recent Imam movies this film shows Adel Imam as the irresistible womanizer. The film is about an Egyptian Petroleum Engineer who lives in Dubai, gets fired because he was caught sleeping with his manager’s wife, returns to Egypt to find that the Israeli Embassy is in the same building where he lives.
The movie will make you smile maybe laugh but the story is a little bit blunt.
What really shocked me is that I read an article by Yomna Kamel who mentioned that in fact there are 14 law suits filed against the Israeli Embassy in Cairo by its neighbors who want the diplomatic office to move out from their 18 storey building.
Neighbors complained about the annoyances they bear from the embassy's heavy security. A man complained that his child was not accepted at a school because the bus couldn’t stop in front of the building to pick up the child (A little bit far fetched, I think??!!).
The building residents complained that their human rights are being violated because relatives and friends can not easy visit because of the security measures, and that they can’t properly use the building's facilities, including the lift (Shit if I live on the 18th floor and can’t use the lift I would die).
A similar article was published by Al Ahram Al Arabi. The Israeli embassy, however, denied receiving any note from the Egyptian court about the lawsuits. Who should we believe??!!! I guess Adel Imam :)
29 August 2005
The banner below was seen in Sayeda Zeinab: “The Fetus in the womb of his mother is saying yes to Mubarak and yes to Serour”.
28 August 2005
26 August 2005
25 August 2005
Ahmad Al-Sabbahy, candidate of Al-Omma (The Nation) incomprehensible Party, stated during a TV interview that Egyptians should wear the Fez. Actually one of the one of the 8 objectives that the Al-Omma party has is that Egyptians wear a National Dress that includes a head dress.
In the meantime Ahmad Al-Sabbahy stated: "If I win the elections - Allah forbids - I plan to yield the position back to President Mubarak". He also said "I do not see myself as a rival to Mubarak". Mr. Al-Sabbahy added: "Mubarak is more suitable to lead Egypt... I consider his winning in the elections to be a personal victory of mine".
A few days ago a friend of mine told me that Noaman Gomaa, the candidate for Al-Wafd Party, was giving a speech in the city of Port Said for his presidential election campaign. The Gomaa supporters went on and on shouting slogans which did not allow him to start his speech. So Mr. Gomaa asked the supporters to stop chanting so he could give his speech. No one paid attention to Mr. Gomaa and the shouting continued. One of the supporters got really excited and was taking the lead. Frustrated Mr. Gomaa avoided the table microphones (but he totally forgot that he was carrying a small microphone attached to his clothes) and he asked one of his aids "None one knows how to shut up this son of gay??" (Ma7adesh 3aref yesket Ibn El Khawal dah?). All the audience heard the comment and the auditorium went dead silent. Someone also added that the rude comment was heard on TV channels.
A friend of mine told me that he was watching a Presidential Election speech by Ayman Nour the Al-Ghad party candidate, when suddenly he disappeared from the TV screen. The platform Ayman Nour was standing on collapsed during his speech in the city of Mahalla. This would have been definitely fun to watch. Al-Arabiya TV says Nor accused the NDP of being responsible for this accident :)