Published in The Jerusalem Post
I went to Egypt and interviewed politicians and activists, here is my report, see the link above,
…For some women in Egypt, the fate of the mermaids was symbolic of the fate that awaited them in 2011 after Hosni Mubarak was ejected from power and it appeared the Muslim Brotherhood would be the main beneficiary of the protests and chaotic transition toward democracy that followed. For Egyptians, it was not a conflict between the secularism of the West and Islam, but between what kind of Islam would be dominant in the country.
In 2007, Hamza Hendawi of the Associated Press noted that conservative Islam was embraced by the vast majority in places like Alexandria. “The only women in Alexandria who don’t wear the Islamic veil are Christians and a small minority of Muslims. Women have long stopped wearing swimsuits on the city’s famous beaches.” Restaurants, bars and nightclubs were closing. It was a “far cry” from the Alexandria of old as seen in movies and photos. A Pew Poll published in July 2016 showed that 74% of Egyptians prefer making Shari’a law the official law….