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Sancho Panza

Tony Blair To Advise Egypt President Sisi On Economic Reform

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Guardian 2/7/14

'Tony Blair has agreed to advise the Egyptian president, Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, who came to power in a military coup last year, as part of a programme funded by the United Arab Emirates that has promised to deliver huge "business opportunities" to those involved, the Guardian has learned.

The former prime minister and Middle East peace envoy, who supported the coup against Egypt's elected president Mohamed Morsi, is to give Sisi advice on "economic reform" in collaboration with a UAE-financed taskforce in Cairo – a decision that has been criticised by one former ally.

But Blair's decision to become involved in Gulf-financed support of the Sisi regime, which is estimated to have killed more than 2,500 protesters and jailed more than 20,000 over the past year, has been attacked.


The former political associate said that a bargain had been struck and added: "Tony Blair has become Sisi's éminence grise and is working on the economic plan that the UAE is paying for. For him, it combines both an existential battle against Islamism and mouth-watering business opportunities in return for the kind of persuasive advocacy he provided George Bush over Iraq.

"It's a very lucrative business model," the associate added, "but he shouldn't be doing it. He's putting himself in hock to a regime that imprisons journalists. He's digging a deeper and deeper hole for himself and everyone associated with him."

Alastair Campbell, Blair's former press secretary who resigned in 2003 over the Iraq war "dodgy dossier" scandal, is also advising the Sisi government on its public image and being paid for it – though on Wednesday he refused to say if he had been working with Strategy&.


Since standing down as prime minister in 2007, Blair and his companies have been awarded a string of multimillion consultancy contracts with private corporations, dictatorships and repressive regimes, including Kazakhstan, Kuwait, the UAE and Colombia. They include a contract worth more than £1m a year to advise the UAE's Abu Dhabi sovereign wealth fund Mubadala.

But his involvement with the Egyptian dictatorship is likely to be his most controversial, both because of its overthrow of a democratic government and the scale of bloodletting it has unleashed – and because of Egypt's central role in the Middle East where he has been the peace envoy of the Quartet of the US, EU, UN and Russia since 2007.

Sisi seized power last July as army commander-in-chief and was confirmed as president this month with 96% of the vote in a dictatorial-style election after Morsi's Muslim Brotherhood had been banned as a terrorist organisation. Blair congratulated him on winning the support of the people and said he deserved the support of the whole international community. But he criticised the recent jailing of al-Jazeera journalists as unjustified.

That is also the view of the autocratic governments in the UAE and Saudi Arabia that are now funding the Sisi regime in Egypt and see themselves as the spearhead of a life-and-death regional struggle against political Islam.

Pressure from the UAE and Saudi Arabia led David Cameron to launch an inquiry into the Muslim Brotherhood and its alleged links to extremism earlier this year. Blair has also commissioned his own report into the Brotherhood, reportedly on behalf of the UAE.

Aides to Blair confirmed last week that he is planning to open an office in Abu Dhabi, capital of the UAE – where he is reported to be especially close to the crown prince, Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed al-Nahyan – to strengthen his links with the Gulf autocracies.

His business dealings and consultancies are obscured by a network of companies and partnerships that allow him to avoid publishing full accounts. But his earnings were reported last year to be more than £20m a year.'

One presumes they'll start by repealing the Egyptian version of Glass Steagall.

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I doubt it is about any 'existential battle with Islamism' for Blair. It will be about the money, 100%.

Got to see a funny side to this, I suppose. Gordon Brown will be watching Blair and will be seething with envy.

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No surprise...all of these arab spring victim nations seem to have had bankster leaderships appointed, Bliar is the perfect 'ask-no-questions' stooge they like.

He'd sell his own grandmother for a big fat cheque.

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Hell is being Tony Blair.

Desperate to be loved but hated by one and all.

Problem is he probably thinks everyone really does love him deep deep down. Thats how narcissists operate.

But you do have to hand it to him he's the one man loathed by both the left and right. To unite those factions so utterly in one thing/belief is quite an acomplishment.

He should, as Orsino said, be burning in hell. It almost makes you want to become a devout christian so that you can believe he will.

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I doubt it is about any 'existential battle with Islamism' for Blair. It will be about the money, 100%.

Got to see a funny side to this, I suppose. Gordon Brown will be watching Blair and will be seething with envy.

no it's even funnier than that.

he's on a collision course with the big man upstairs and doesn't yet know it.

his course of action will not lead to bringing down the UK,as he and campbell conspired to do

it's actually going to result in the complete annhialation of the hamas/hezbolah and whoever else he's done business with....but also to the complete humiliation of the IRA as well...bny way of some rather embarrasing incidents across the pond linking the two terrorist groups.

Not only pissing off AIPAC, but alerting the evangelicals of political skullduggery on their side of the pond,and proving the marquis de lafayette correct.

ireland will then be forced with a choice( funding for the IRA will dry up), and they will have a none too friendly US garrison posted there, so will scotland,as will england too but we will get off rather more lightly.

don't be too concerned about such happenings, it is actually a blessing in disguise as all countries will then be free of the EU power grab, and it won't be negotiated.

sending him as a peace envoy has the most cruel irony about it, everything he touches ends up in complete carnage.

Edited by oracle

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The Peace Envoy. Channel Four News just did a slightly acerbic piece on this ****. Channel Four News have expressed solidarity with the Al-Jazeera journalists imprisoned by the Egyptian regime.

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It's a shame that the hell he believes in isn't real.

it's real enough, but he thinks the pope will grant him absolution and he'll stay out.

EPIC FAIL!!!

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I doubt it is about any 'existential battle with Islamism' for Blair. It will be about the money, 100%.

Got to see a funny side to this, I suppose. Gordon Brown will be watching Blair and will be seething with envy.

told you before, yes he is against islamism, but he wants to use them as a proxy to get rid of the heretics first.

pity that radical islam is going to do exactly the same on steroids to his lot, and they ain't interested in the money.

perfect justice,

what you dish out, you'll get back double.

Edited by oracle

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told you before, yes he is against islamism, but he wants to use them as a proxy to get rid of the heretics first.

pity that radical islam is going to do exactly the same on steroids to his lot, and they ain't interested in the money.

perfect justice,

what you dish out, you'll get back double.

I presume this will end in a nuclear holocaust, as usual?

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Makes sense for Blair to be advising an autocrat, he clearly believes that's the correct form of government.

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And having to diddle Cherie.

How do you know that he did?

it's like Bill Clinton. Despite his sexual enthusiasm there is more and more evidence emerging to suggest that he didn't bother with Hitlery - and that Webster Hubble is Chelsea's father.

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Problem is he probably thinks everyone really does love him deep deep down. Thats how narcissists operate.

Speaking of narcissists . . .

onselfportsplash.jpg

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