The Sugarcoated Coup

The elected President and high-ranking members of the government “arrested” and taken to military prison at gunpoint. Journalists rounded up and TV stations taken off the air. Armed troops swarming onto the streets and characteristically concentrating their attention on supporters of the deposed regime. A general goes on TV saying he has decided who his next puppet Head of State will be – an utter nobody from the judiciary who only started working in his old job on Monday – before adding, as is customary for coup leaders to add, that people must obey the police followed by a thinly disguised “or else”.

But we’re being told it’s not a coup.

Career Move

Not a Coup

Ladies and Gentlemen this is your military commander speaking. This is not, repeat not, a coup. This is a real gun I’m holding so please do exactly as I say. Repeat after me: ‘This is not a coup’.

The Egyptian people expressed a clear desire for tolerance and inclusion, not a military coup. Having failed, having their “shar3eya” protests hijacked by a counter-revolution painstakingly organized by regressive Mubarak-era types, and facing the potent weapon of military force, denial is the easy option. Thus, it’s not a coup. Here’s an example of how ‘tolerant’ and ‘inclusive’ some coup-deniers are already prepared to be, even when it comes to such trivia as semantics or personally identifying one’s self:

SMH Tweet

Even the online abuse is sugarcoated with please and thank yous. Many similar examples are easily found. Truth be told, here at the we were being “reported” for blabbering on the Internet by people like Sherwit before she was even born. On Usenet the appropriate response would have been to crosspost to alt.flame and ask the netcop if “SMH” stands for “Shit For Brains“. Nowadays we’ve learned that it usually does, and besides there’s simply too many of them.

Fortunately ‘people like her’, utterly dependent on perceived authority, are largely contained within the push-button simplicity of social networking’s insular little corrals where they are deprived of their intellectual property – if they have any – placed under surveillance and watched constantly. Where history appears to unfold merely for their entertainment, and where they will always be tuned in to the right channel. Where one’s true purpose in life is not to express one’s self, but to be popular and purchase and consume products.

Here’s that particularly offensive “shit” that @SherwitMHammad got worked up enough over to want to call for intervention, banishment and/or censorship:


Pretty provocative stuff right? But hey we don’t care.

Military Censorship

The military were more efficient in silencing their own critics, real or potential, with conventional coup classicism by immediately shutting down broadcasters and arresting journalists that might conceivably disagree with them on any point, no matter how trivial. The coup, however, does not have the kind of broad popular let alone international support it likes to portray and that Sherwit and so many like her so dearly wish to identify with. If it had it would not need to silence its opponents. But it does leave the military firmly in charge, just as it did when when Mubarak fell, and that’s all that really matters.

A large enough mob can always bring down a sitting government, especially when the mob’s demands just happen to dovetail with those of the military brass. Woe betide the day they differ. To turn it into a revolution, however, requires some kind of planning for the aftermath. We’re going to overthrow the government today, then what? Let’s just do it and see what happens. Then the military intervene, and see what happens.

Lovebombs in the Sky with Dassault

Meanwhile many, particularly those mostly far removed from the scene, will seek comfort in what they only believe they have witnessed, or, should the street-fighting reality of what is happening on the ground start to intrude between the commercials, god-forbid, “just try to think positive“. Move on. The shootings, whatever, one should not dwell upon. As American Matriarch Barbara Bush would surely trumpet, Sugarcoated warplanes dropping Love Bombs over Cairo to celebrate successful military putsch.Why should I think of horrible things like human beings squashed flat under the tracks of tanks their entrails spilling out like Jell-O, when I can fill my mind with beautiful images such as soldiers drawing love hearts in the sky with their warplanes“.

An Al-Jazeera analyst, drinking from the cup of live commentary as the military proclamation was made, was the first to taste the “Sugarcoated” flavor of the coup, and the first to note it’s “surrealism“.

By the time the military had started dropping love bombs on their supporters (pictured above) he, along with the rest of objective journalism in Egypt, had already been forced off air by plain-clothed men who refused to identify themselves. So we don’t know what he thinks of the military’s gratitudinous bombs of love. We can imagine that if he could see the action in the sky from whatever jail cell the men locked him up in, he may have thought it some kind of hallucination or even a Mirage.

Then the ambiguity of that thought would lead him to conclude somebody must have spiked his tea with some bad acid the night before, it was probably on the sugar, and that soon he’s going to wake up back in his hotel room coming down and wondering where he can score some more. But what he’s likely to be waking up to is not Lovebomb Acid tabs, but the reality of a headache, the sound of standard issue jackboots, and the only trip he will be taking, if he’s lucky, will be a quick deportation.

Propaganda Writ Large

Not A Coup Propaganda in Tahrir SquareEqually surreal was the coup’s use of a laser-light show to display propaganda directly onto the walls of government buildings around Tahrir Square (right). Sending a crude yet powerful message the mobs could not fail to respond to. Prior to military intervention many people in the Square were making it plain that a coup was not what they wanted. Their slogan was “Neither Mursi nor the Military“, but those demands stopped, unsurprisingly, the moment the Army took over.


Absent any objective reporting on the ground the debate, such that it is, avoids contentious issues such as rights and wrongs, who is leading who. Instead discourse degenerates into politically-correct attempts at redefining the World’s understanding of coup d’etat which remains – even for English speakers – a foreign expression. As an expression it is open to broad interpretation, as the Wikipedia article shows, but legally a coup would have ramifications that the Egyptian military brass and their American financiers would rather avoid. Getting the military’s “not a coup” message out is the order of the day.

In American-English the word “coup” has a Beltway-sized Billion-dollar price-tag attached to it, which can cause a lot of hassle for cash-strapped Obama. As the Egyptian military’s chief paymaster the coup plotters would prefer to keep Obama off the hook. So it’s not a coup.

As for the brazen hypocrisy of arming Islamists in Syria to overthrow a military, while simultaneously arming a military in Egypt to overthrow Islamists, well Obama and Congress are fine with that. Lots of Arabs getting killed by US arms won’t do their ratings any harm. Obama might even be able to get some drone strikes in. Keep his average up.

Thus we have the ludicrous situation of Egyptians claiming they are rising up against US interference, while turning willfully blind eyes to the billions of dollars their military receives from Washington. Money that enables ranking Egyptian officers and their sons to rub shoulders with their Princely Saudi brethren in the casinos and whorehouses of Southern Europe.

"King Abdullah was the first international head of state to send a message 
of congratulations to Interim President Adly Mansour. "In my own name and on 
behalf of the people of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, I congratulate you on 
assuming the leadership of Egypt" -- wikipedia. 

Nice friends to have. But let’s be honest, if Egypt ever had to battle its tiny Hebrew-speaking enemy to the East, Saudi Arabian support would evaporate and the glorious Egyptian Army would be routed within 45 minutes. If puppet-master General Sisi’s brave troops had to fight the IDF instead of their own civilians it wouldn’t be love hearts flying over Tahrir Square the next day, it would be the Star of David.

The weapons that the US supply to Egypt are only ever meant to be used against Egyptians. The inevitable blow-back will be denied, blamed on the victims, and demands that the USA “stay out” of Egypt’s affairs will be moot as the military continues to rake in $1.3bn a year in “aid” from the Americans not a dime of which will ever go to anybody in Egypt who actually needs it. In the Egyptian, as in any military there’s a saying: Where’s there’s brass there’s gold.

Tolerance and Inclusion

Here’s a typical example, picked at random, of the kind of deep hatred emanating from so many of those who claim that they, and ‘their’ military, stand for an inclusive, tolerant regime for all Egyptians:

Peaceful Protester Calling for Opponents to be Shot by Military

The voice of moderation? When people do the same as she did but for reasons she does not agree with – the protestors she’s referring to were calling for the restoration of a democratically elected government – she denounces them as terrorists and wants them shot. She is far from alone in making this kind of extreme hate-speech against the millions who voted for the last government, and thus civil war beckons.

Not that the likes of Novy will ever consider themselves extremist or in any other way culpable. After all, if a military coup never ‘actually’ happened, how can they possibly be accused of giving it their support? We can already predict with a fair degree of certainty what they are going to be saying to us in the near future: “It’s not a civil war, it’s counter-terrorism“, and it will be neither the first nor the last time we’ll hear that.

Update 9/7/2013 – It didn’t take long and, apparently, it’s “official”. Unnamed officials speaking anonymously, one presumes:


The words truth and reconciliation are worth emphasis in this sugarcoated coup not for their sweet flavor but for their utter absence amidst the stench of hypocrisy and the sour rhetoric of hate. C’est la guerre.

The revolution may not have been televised but if it had been it would have turned out the same as everything else on TV and you’d have ended up wondering why you bothered watching it and surely there’s something better on the other side. Say man, isn’t Bob Dylan on trial for shooting some black kid in the face? In Cairo they lost two revolutions in two years already. Dude, we have just watched a re-run. Switch the channel, man.

Are you in Egypt? Do you think people who voted for the last government should be gunned down in the streets with US-supplied weapons? Well fuck you.


Egypt’s Revolution on the Rocks | Think Africa Press
8 Shocking Moments Of The Egyptian Revolution
America’s Plan B in Egypt: Bring Back the Old Regime
Adly Mansour – The Snake of Denial
When is a Military Coup Not a Military Coup? When it Happens in Egypt, Apparently
The U.S. was a Passive Observer in Egypt – If You Believe the New York Times

Related Images

Recommended Listening / #not_a_coup playlist

Songs open in a new window

THE SPECIALS…DOESN’T MAKE IT ALRIGHT Multicultural stoners on political violence.
يا حبيبتي يا مصر-شادية The theme tune of the coup.
Makis Ablianitis – Love Secret off-topic, but worth listening to

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