Egypt exhibiting its 2015 airstrikes in Libya with new movie

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Feb 22, 2021

CAIRO — A manufacturing firm believed to be linked to the Egyptian intelligence has fired the creativeness of hundreds of thousands of viewers by unveiling a brand new movie about Egyptian airstrikes in Libya’s northeastern metropolis of Derna in February 2015. 

Synergy Films posted the trailer of its new movie “Al-Serb” (“Squadron”) on Feb. 14, promising to offer viewers an perception into the air raids that adopted the slaughter by the Islamic State (IS) of 20 Egyptian nationals. 

“The Egyptian president had vowed to avenge the killing of Egyptian citizens and he honored his pledge,” the corporate’s chairman, Tamer Morsi, wrote on the trailer web page.

Egypt staged the airstrikes on Feb. 16, hours after IS posted a video during which it confirmed the slaughter of 21 individuals, of whom 20 had been Egyptian Christians, in a coastal space in Libya. 

The Egyptians butchered within the video had been residents of al-Awr village within the central province of Minya. 

Like hundreds of different Egyptians, these individuals — most of them building staff — traveled to Libya to earn a living and escape abject poverty. 

Instead of incomes a living, nevertheless, they met their destiny by the hands of the IS terrorists. Their killing was believed to be a part of a wider marketing campaign towards the Egyptian presence in Libya. 

An Egyptian TV director advised of the perseverance of the households of the victims throughout her go to to al-Awr when she visited the village in February 2015 so as to supply her condolences along with a colleague. “Instead of soothing them, they [the relatives of the victims] soothed us,” Haidy Gobran wrote on Twitter following her go to.

“Al-Serb” captures nationwide anger following the killing of the Egyptian nationals in Libya and the nationwide response to this killing.

The function movie stars a lot of Egyptian and Arab actors, together with Ahmed al-SakkaSherif MounirAser Yassin and Hind Sabri.

It begins with a Feb. 15 speech by Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, during which he says his nation reserves the proper to reply to the killing of the 20 Egyptians each time and in the way in which it needs.

It then particulars preparations for the airstrikes on IS camps in Derna, how the strikes had been deliberate and the way they had been executed. The movie additionally accommodates debates on regional terrorism and terrorism financing, in accordance with its scriptwriter Omar Abdel Halim.

Abdel Halim and his colleagues modified the script of the movie 12 instances earlier than approving a last draft. “We did this to produce a film that suits the greatness of the Egyptian army,” he advised Al-Monitor.

Mounir stated he and his fellow actors frolicked with military commanders planning the airstrikes and pilots executing them. “We listened to great army officers who offered us all the needed support,” Mounir advised the native TV channel ON

Around four million individuals watched the trailer of “Al-Serb” within the first 48 hours after it was posted, in accordance with the manufacturing firm.

In political phrases, the movie throws gentle on an occasion that induced a shift in Egypt’s technique towards occasions in neighboring Libya. 

Libya has grow to be a nationwide safety concern for Egypt because the downfall of the Moammar Gadhafi regime in 2011, as a result of presence of an prolonged border between the 2 international locations. 

Cairo accuses terrorist teams energetic in Libya of infiltrating its border and finishing up assaults within the nation. It additionally says weapons and explosives smuggled into Egypt from Libya find yourself within the arms of terrorists affiliated with the native IS department that’s particularly energetic within the Sinai Peninsula. 

“The unrest in neighboring Libya has a heavy toll on Egypt’s security,” retired Egyptian military Gen. Gamal Mazloum advised Al-Monitor. “With many terrorist camps, Libya has turned into a springboard for attacks against Egypt.” 

The February 2015 airstrikes towards the IS camps in Derna marked Egypt’s move from covert to overt motion in Libya, analysts advised Al-Monitor. Cairo used to covertly help the Libyan National Army (LNA) that controls most of jap, central and southern Libya now. However, the 2015 airstrikes induced this help to be overt. The identical airstrikes weren’t the final to be staged by Egypt in Libya.

In June 2020, Sisi declared most of jap Libya to be a pink line for Egypt, a declaration geared toward repelling potential assaults by the troops of the Tripoli-based Government of National Accord that is backed by Turkey. 

“The red line mainly aimed to protect the LNA and send a message to Turkey and terrorist groups active in Libya that Egypt would not tolerate any violation against eastern Libya,” Tarek Fahmy, a professor of political science at Cairo University, advised Al-Monitor.

Nevertheless, “Al-Serb” is considered as but a brand new episode in a public relations marketing campaign by the navy institution and the intelligence to ramp up help for the military. 

Synergy has been on the coronary heart of this marketing campaign. The firm, which was based in 2003, however acquired by Eagle Capital, which is believed to be a media funding arm of the Egyptian intelligence, in 2017, produced a TV collection about Egypt’s struggle towards the native IS department in Sinai. 

The collection, which stored tens of hundreds of thousands of Egyptians and Arabs glued to TV screens throughout the month of Ramadan final yr, particularly targeted on the life and loss of life of Ahmed al-Mansi, an Egyptian military colonel who turned an icon of Egypt’s conflict on terrorism after his killing in July 2017. 

These works are more and more elevating public consciousness of the sacrifices of the safety institution, cinema critics say.

“Patriotic films and series are very important at this juncture because they throw light on the role the security establishment plays in protecting this country and its people,” cinema critic Tarek al-Shenawi advised Al-Monitor. 

In a means, these works elevate public morale in a rustic that has had sufficient psychological setbacks because the 2011 rebellion towards longtime President Hosni Mubarak.

Egypt is on the coronary heart of the continuing regional terrorist upsurge, and it is on the coronary heart of the struggle towards this terrorism as effectively.

However, the brand new movie can be stirring up debate, given the controversial nature of the 2015 airstrikes in Derna and Egyptian involvement within the North African state generally. 

Film director Ezz el-Deen Dwedar, a vocal critic of the Egyptian military, believes the euphoria accompanying the movie and its trailer is misplaced. 

I can not discover any heroism, he wrote, in air raids on disarmed individuals living underneath IS management in Derna. “To strike a Libyan city that has no air defense or air force is not heroism at all,” Dwedar wrote on Facebook. 

The airstrikes reportedly induced the deaths of dozens of civilians in Derna, main Amnesty International to accuse Egypt of failing to take precautionary measures to stop civilians from being caught in the course of its retaliation for the killing of Egyptian nationals. 

Another man, Mohamed Ramadan, wrote that the Egyptian nationals had been killed within the northern Libyan metropolis of Sirte. 

“However, Egypt chose to strike Derna because it was the farthest Libyan city within the range of Egyptian fighter jets,” Ramadan wrote on Twitter. “It all was a media present.”