Via Atlantic Council: EgyptSource, by Jonathan Moremi:

… “It was an assault on civil society and I personally decided that it was a fight worth fighting”, says Becker who could not relate to the working theory of the diplomats that if all the foreigners left, the Egyptian government would go easy on the Egyptians. Besides, says Becker even now after a year of tiresome court sessions, getting out was no option. “How dare we as an American NGO come to this country and preach democracy and preach human rights – and the first time that we get hit with some paperwork felonies, the instinct is to run?” His employer, propagating the principles of democracy and free speech in his portfolio, could not relate to this. A few days after the plane left, Becker received an email from NDI. He was fired…

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… People accused of a crime should have the basic right to hear what the lawyers and judges and witnesses are saying”, he points out, recalling the testimony of former Minister of International Cooperation, Fayza Aboul Naga, who is widely blamed for this trial to be held.

 

Only from others reporting from within the court room did they later learn that she talked for over two hours but had nothing substantial to say. While one judge fell asleep, another urged the ex- Minister to come to the point, to no avail. “Her testimony was rather outstanding. She proved our point that this is simply a political case. None of her testimonies had anything to do with the charges brought against us”, remembers Becker who, since no other evidence against them has been produced so far, is cautiously hopeful that this trial might yet end with an acquittal. “I certainly don’t want to spend the next four to six years in an Egyptian prison, but it is a distinct possibility. I have seen stranger things happen in this country”, he says and marvels at his Egyptian friends and colleagues who bravely share the hardships of the cage with him. “Fixing the problems of 30 years of dictatorship is going to take a long, long time. And Egypt needs the valuable contribution of these Egyptians that are in the cage. I consider them patriots. They worked, really, really hard to make Egypt better”…