Arnon Grunberg

To midwife

Security police

In today’s Times: ‘While many here have cheered the military for taking over after last week’s ouster of President Hosni Mubarak and for pledging to oversee a transition to democracy, human rights groups say that in the past three weeks the military has also played a documented role in dozens of disappearances and at least 12 cases of torture — trademark practices of the Mubarak government’s notorious security police that most here hoped would end with his exit.
Some, like Mr. Aboul Hassan and his two friends, were not released until several days after the revolution removed Mr. Mubarak.
Now human rights groups say the military’s continuing role in such abuses raises new questions about its ability to midwife Egyptian democracy.
“The military is detaining people incommunicado, which is illegal, and so it is effectively disappearing people,” said Heba Morayef of Human Rights Watch, which has documented four cases that it describes as involving torture. Amnesty International has documented three such cases, and the Front for the Defense of Egyptian Protesters has documented five.’

Another revolution gone sour?