How safe is Egypt after 9/11/2012

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Sep 15th, 2012, 10:55 AM
  #21
 
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Even when Richard Engel (NBC/MSNBC) was reporting the night after the initial upheaval, apparently from terrace/balcony of his hotel with Tahrir Sq below, he clearly pointed out at the far end about 100 hooligans carrying on, but that traffic and pedestrian around the Square was as usual. Also that in the opposite direction, the streets, shops and people 'were going about going about' as usual.

Appears in many of the countries where there have been break-outs it's a handful of 'got nothing to do, so why not stir up some scare' guys who are out there... not the general citizenry.
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Sep 15th, 2012, 11:32 AM
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Sandi - Bazapt keda (Arabic for EXACTLY!). I'm happy to hear about the report from Richard Engel. I wish I could go give him a hug for that. YES, everything is very isolated to near the Embassy.
Even today I went fabric shopping at the Wikala el Balaa which is maybe a mile north of the Embassy on the Nile - it's not far from the Embassy and we had ZERO issues. I mean even as I was shopping, there were those odd salesmen that asked if I was American. I said yes, and got the normal "welcome to Egypt" and all smiles and giggles that they were talking to a foreigner. Granted most of the salesmen in that market are Coptic Christian, but still - things are fine.

Grcxx - have to say I haven't been to the pyramids recently, but there are no reports of danger out there. I was at the Citadel last Saturday (before the mess) but I would not have a problem going there today. THE VAST majority of Muslims may disagree with the making of this film and they may WISH it were being handled more aggressively in America, but they know that being angry and fighting is the wrong way to handle this.

516 - be sure to ask about all your immunizations while you are at the doctor (LOL) and make sure you are up to date on things like tetanus. Have a great trip.

Over and Out for now I'm headed up to the Mediterranean Sea for a few days. I might visit Fodors when I can but don't freak out if I'm not on every day. I'll be eating fish, drinking cocktails and laying on an air mattress in the sea.
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Sep 15th, 2012, 01:48 PM
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Enjoy yourself!
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Sep 15th, 2012, 04:02 PM
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Hi Casual Cairo I'd like to know what you mean exactly by the U.S. handling it more aggressively. Do you mean that we should take a tougher stance against the Islamic terrorists or what? We do have freedom of speech in the U.S. so I would like to know what you are referring to in your statement. We dont burn flags or kill ambassedors if we disagree with statements.
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Sep 15th, 2012, 07:02 PM
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But besides this, does anyone have info on Tunis? We are hoping to do a wildlife safari in Tunisia next summer and am watching the goings-on there with great sadness. Maybe I should start a threat with this question.
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Sep 15th, 2012, 07:08 PM
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516TP, they decided a couple of weeks before we left that it would be unwise to stop in Israel. However they have a right to make a change at a moment's notice if they see fit. They will not take you someplace that is unsafe.

I don't think they will keep you at sea, I bet they will stop somewhere else if they don't go to Egypt. Although I was disappointed not to see Israel on that trip I have to admit Cyprus was a delightful surprise. I never would have visited that country otherwise but I enjoyed it so much I hope to return someday.

cokesmith, I think your idea for a new thread is a good one. Good luck with that.
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Sep 15th, 2012, 07:48 PM
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Thanks again for your responses.. The last cruise I went on They kept us at sea due to weather. It was horrible. All the excursions that were booked was refunded back on a Sea-pass, not cash. 2 of the stops were unavailable..

I'm okay with any changes..at this point. I wouldn't mind a fishing trip in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea. Sounds so relaxing. A friend mentioned getting salt or sand in one of the Sea's. Do you know if that's Jerusalem or Egypt. and to bring some back in a shampoo bottle?
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Sep 15th, 2012, 08:08 PM
  #28
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a friend also mentioned to dress in a ḥijāb and or Abaya if the trip still presumes.
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Sep 15th, 2012, 11:04 PM
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516TP - has your friend ever BEEN to Egypt? It it absolutely ridiculous to think you have to wear a hijab or abaya. Dress modestly, but normally. Pants, capris, or long skirts, and a top that covers your upper arms is the best bet. I usually wore pants out by the pyramids and long flowy skirts in town.

But remember to have a headscarf of some kind in case you visit any mosques.
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Sep 16th, 2012, 06:48 AM
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Agree with Grcxx3 above...516TP that is some bad advice and frankly when I have seen obvious dressing in hijab by tourists I am sort of insulted on behalf of the locals. Egyptian women are very stylish hijab or western style and the tourists look just silly. You will not blend in...don't try just dress as Grcxx3 suggests. 516TP it seems as if the trip is going and you have committed so I would just spend some time getting ready for what should be a great experience knowing the cruise line has the ability to substitute ports and there are lots of alternatives in the area you are cruising. You are in a much better position than a land based tour just in Egypt. Time to start getting excited!!
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Sep 16th, 2012, 07:08 AM
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Yes, just be excited to go as you will not find a more welcoming or hospitable people than those in the mideast. I have spent a lot of time in various countries there, inc. Syria and Egypt, and most Muslims are peace loving and family oriented and welcome visitors from all nations. Don't let the actions of extremists or hooligans influence your opinion before actually seeing for yourself how wonderful the Arab culture and people really are.
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Sep 16th, 2012, 08:39 AM
  #32
 
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Debbie - I too was about to give Richard a hug (he is a cutie-pie)... as sometimes his reports aren't as upfront, much as with many other reporters in regions of upheaval and unrest. We have to read/hear between lines, but not this time thankfully!
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Sep 16th, 2012, 09:04 AM
  #33
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Please listen to Grcxx3, she lived in Egypt for several years and she knows a lot more than your friend.

I am a female who traveled alone to Egypt. I dressed as I do at home except I never showed my knees or bare shoulders.
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Sep 17th, 2012, 05:03 PM
  #34
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Hi. I have been interested in and following the Egypt news since our fabulous vacation in APril this year. While those on the ground in Cairo can probably give you a better perspective, here is what I see by watching the news carefully, and from multiple sources -

The Egyptian demonstrators did not "storm" the embassy. If you think so, you are confusing the demostrations and news in several countries. In Cairo, they climbed the wall around the outside of the compound and tore down and burned the US flag, put up their own black flag. Certainly rowdy and potentailly dangerous, rocks were flying, but not in the catergory of "trashed and burned the embassy" which it might seem from jumbled pictures on the 10-second regular network news snippets.

The next nights, the Egyptian police and riot squads kept the demonstrators quite a ways away from the embassy. They even errected concrete road blockades to control the crowd.

Apparently the third day(?) the demonstrators moved to the interior ministry, suggesting they had many grievances, not just annoyance with videos produced in the USA.

Morsi said they have found some of the demonstrators were paid to attend. Hmmm... rent-a-crowds. Like every other nation, Egypt has its share or extremists. If the most they can muster in hundred in a city of 20 million, that tells you how small a minority the protesters are, especially if a lot are paid to be there. Another group in the demonstration, according to the news, was soccer fan clubs; they are still agitated from the murder of 70 people in a soccer riot, the subsequent closing of the soccer season - and with the repression until 2 years ago, team fan clubs were one of the most organized groups to be used for mass political action.

These "riots" tend to happen during a certain time fo the day. The rest of the time, it is generally business as usual. We read all about huge crowds in Tahrir square, but when we were there, we saw about 3 tents and half a dozen people.

The vast majority of people simply want law and order, peace, and the tourists to return. Tourism is the major source of income. Everybody we encountered this spring was happy and smiling and incredibly helpful.
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Sep 17th, 2012, 09:02 PM
  #35
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The dress attire was suggested by a Jordanian friend who actually waned me to meet their family...travel through the streets and bring back fabric and other dry goods. I guess he wanted me to feel at ease..I was going to get a fabulous 2-day tour.
But I don't want to pretend to be something that I am not. As soon as I open my mouth and start talking "my NYC-LI accent" definitely would not blend. lol..
Thanks again for your help and advice, Cant wait for the trip
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Sep 17th, 2012, 11:25 PM
  #36
 
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MD - your posts remind me of a time many years ago (maybe 2003) when there were a series of anti-war riots and protests in Cairo (usually on Fridays, after prayers). Suddenly I was getting emails/phone calls from family and friends in the US asking if we were okay. I had to explain to everyone that the protests were taking place 6-7 miles away from where we lived and that life in our little "burb" was going along quite normally - people were working, shops were open, kids were going to school, ladies were lunching, etc.

516TP - I hope you have a fabulous trip!
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Sep 18th, 2012, 06:42 AM
  #37
 
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Grcxx3, same thing happened to me when I spent a month in Damascus in Mar. 2010 and the protests in Syria had just begun and were confined to Deraa near the border with Jordan. Friends and family were seeing images on tv that made it seem like the whole country was involved which was far from the truth as it took about a year for the momentum to build and reach other cities. Those protests did not involve foreigners or foreign powers either but a desire for regime change. I had to keep explaining that if my embassy recommended we leave, I would leave, but that didn't occur for many months. The media can be a one sided view of the actual situation.
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Sep 18th, 2012, 09:59 AM
  #38
 
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Nowadays we have to keep everything in perspective, whether what we hear or read or rumors.

Living in NYC, walking home from usual stop at Staples, heading to Post Office, I hear helios flying above me... unusual as they're not allowed to. Looked up and wondered 'what the heck?' But once in PO, the manager advises some guy (a baseball player as I recall) in a small plane flying north up the East River makes a turn to return south (the airspace is too small to do that... dumb!) and flies right into a highrise apartment building... OMG! A few upper floors in flames, plane drops to the ground... get the picture? This happens less than 1/mile from where I live on the Upper East Side, and only a few years after 9/11/01.

By the time I arrived home, even without time to turn on the TV, phone is ringing, to find on other end friends in Tanzania and another from Kenya 'are you okay?' 'where do you live in relation to the accident?' They, of course had heard about this in the middle of the night, and as all important and no so important or even correct info, gets around rather quickly these days, nice to know that people care... but we all have to wait for the 'facts' and keep these situations in perspective and not automatically go into panic mode.

Sad, of course, pilot and his paxs dead, and recall a woman in the building badly burned... area blocked off for a few weeks before repairs could be done. It was a terrible and unfortunate accident.
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Sep 18th, 2012, 03:19 PM
  #39
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sandi i recall those days you talked about, very well.
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Sep 18th, 2012, 04:40 PM
  #40
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This is the reason why I'm very grateful to have a website like this to have these discussions.. forums .In NYC I worked in sales & marketing, in hotels. Media definitely plays a strong role with tourism.This is my first air travel abroad since. 9/11

Still remembering 9/11..one of the buildings destroyed was the place I worked 11 yrs ago. I remember the smell, chaos,and the media coverage around ground zero & the entire metro area. Thanks again for ur advice. Its pretty neat to have eyes and ears global.
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