With media focus on Tahrir, violence and so many other media friendly events it’s very easy to overlook the other battle grounds in the clash between anti-SCAF groups, and SCAF or pro-SCAF groups. But before I get to those battlefields and what SCAF is doing to win them, let’s see a few facts (if you're only interested in knowing what the other battlegrounds are, Jump to the second part) ;
Some of the methods they’ve been using are primarily associated with the Economy (The often laughed at term “Wheel of production” often used), and security. In both cases they tend to blame the protesters for deficiency in both.
Considering the Economy for example, they often broadcast widely how much the stock market has lost due to protests or strikes….etc. while mostly failing to even mention when the stock market recovers whether completely or partially. Newsflash: Stock markets go up and down. Especially in turbulent times.
They claim they don’t have the funds to increase government worker salaries or impose a minimum wage, while at the same time increasing police force wages by up to 200% costing millions, or running an ad campaign to improve the image of the police costing millions if not billions, even though the police have not done their jobs since January 24th (or if we’re being picky, they haven’t really done their jobs in years)
They fail to address the cost of lack of security on Egypt’s economy, leading me to…
They love to blame the lack of security on protests and strikes. But ask yourself this; if the protests really do cause a lack of security, how many days in the last 10 months have there been protests? Why is there a lack of security on days that don’t have protests?
It is entirely silly to believe that a police force of over 1.5 million is unable to maintain security. It’s interesting to note that while there are incidents, the security situation in general is a largely manufactured fear, be it by the police refusal to do their job (or at least do it properly), or by a recent Gallup poll that states that the crime rate has gone down to around 3-4% and yet up to around 50% of Egyptian people feel unsafe. Perhaps suggesting that the crime rate hasn't actually gone up. Instead it's spread to areas that weren't known for high rates of crime (There are areas in Egypt that have been known to have rampant crime for almost a decade, with little to no police presence whatsoever.)
Why is it Activists are cracked down on, even though they previously said they wouldn’t crackdown on activists, while thugs are still supposedly running rampant according to their media?
On a side-note. A personal friend of mine that owns a factory in Egypt, had an entire truck full of merchandise worth 3 million Egyptian pounds get stolen on a well populated road that the Ministry of Interior have claimed to have secured. He has had to stomach the loss of the merchandise and the truck, send out another truck with merchandise of the same value, as well as pay a 500,000 L.E contractual fine because the merchandise was delivered late. Yes, of course it's all the protesters fault. If they were protesting on that road, we might have seen more police there than ever necessary.
I'm already aware of all this, What are the battlefields you spoke of?
While the Regime (i.e SCAF), have always had the stronger bases of power, including actually being in power & controlling the media, Anti-Regime activists have only had three basis of power; The streets, the protests, and the internet.
The power of anti-regime activists in Streets & or in protesting have either been lost or severely diminished, mainly due to the violent media campaigns against protesters and their demands.
What about the Internet?
Well, SCAF is currently trying to shatter that power base as well, First of all through the "Internet filter law" that they're trying to impose, Scaring activists by threatening to arrest or fine them for tweets, Imprisoning activists for their blog posts, and various other methods.
The newest method?
A Cyber Army.
SCAF called for "Volunteers" for their cyber army on their facebook page
What is a cyber army?
There are two types of Cyber Armies; The kind that does hacking, infiltration...etc , and the Type that goes out of it's way to spread government propaganda.
In this case, the Cyber army is probably the propagandist type; The type that goes out of it's way to change public opinion online, be it through social networks like twitter, you tube or facebook, or other sites like wikipedia, to spread the pro-regime bias to readers at home or abroad.
In any case, a Cyber army can be largely ineffective, or largely effective. It depends on several factors, but in no case should it be ignored or overlooked, especially when supported by a power base like SCAF.
besides with the SCAF priding themselves on Elections (that occurred with a suspicious absence of violence nationwide), and Egyptians that went out to vote seeing the Army & police being all helpful and polite, who will believe activists, protesters and images like this;
When they have images like these all over Social networks ?
Perhaps SCAF's new Cyber Army won't need to look too hard for Ammunition.