- By Joshua Keating
Joshua Keating is associate editor at Foreign Policy and the editor of the Passport blog. He has worked as a researcher, editorial assistant, and deputy Web editor since joining the FP staff in 2007. In addition to being featured in Foreign Policy, his writing has been published by the Washington Post, Newsweek International, Radio Prague, the Center for Defense Information, and Romania's Adevarul newspaper. He has appeared as a commentator on CNN International, C-Span, ABC News, Al Jazeera, NPR, BBC radio, and others. A native of Brooklyn, New York, he studied comparative politics at Oberlin College.
Using emergency powers provisions that give it the right to order mobile phone networks to send text messages to subscribers, the Egyptian government has apparently ordered Vodafone to send a message urging citizens to confront "traitors". Check out this Flickr account for images of the messages. The Guardian’s live blog has a translation:
The Armed Forces asks Egypt’s honest and loyal men to confront the traitors and criminals and protect our people and honor and our precious Egypt.
Youth of Egypt, beware rumors and listen to the sound of reason – Egypt is above all so preserve it.
To every mother-father-sister-brother, to every honest citizen preserve this country as the nation is forever.
The Armed Forces cares for your safety and well being and will not resort to using force against this great nation.
Mobile phone service was restored throughout Egypt yesterday after operators were instructed to shut it down last Friday. Vodafone claims they are protesting the current situation and have “made clear that all messages should be transparent and clearly attributable to the originator.” All the same, many only activists by the company’s acquiescence to the regime and have called for a boycott of its services outside Egypt.