The Buried 9.2分
读书笔记 Chapter 16
Ginkgo
The trial was scheduled for nine o'clock, but Morsi appeared an hour and half later. Can we push the appointment back a little? Reportedly, the delay involved clothing - out of pride, the former president refused the traditional white clothes of an Egyptian prisoner. At last the court officials allowed him to wear a black suit without a tie.
The moment he appeared, the room erupted. A group of Morsi's lawyers stood up and shouted a soccer-style chant "Morsi-i-i-i-i-i! Morsi! Morsi-i-i-i-i-i! Morsi, Morsi!" Egyptian journalists also leaped to their feet, drowning out the lawyers with their own chant: "E'aderm, e'adem! Death penalty, death penalty!"
I was sitting near the front of the room, and with everybody jumping around me, I stood on the seat of my chair in order to see the former president. Morsi was still bearded, and he didn't appear to have lost any weight. He held his head high, the way he had during his final televised appearance last July. After the noise died down, he shouted, "I am the president of the republic! I am the president of the republic! This is a military coup!" There was another outburst, and finally security men demanded that everybody in the room sit down.
The lecture hall appeared to have been converted with minimal effort. It was long, spacious room with a wooden floor that descended steeply to a low platform. The place felt like a turned-around theater - here, the audience was elevated. All of us sat on rough chairs with attached writing surfaces, like students in a decrepit college. We looked down on the judge and the other court officials, who were seated at a long desk. Behind them a wood-paneled wall rose more than twenty feet high. This space was blank: no sign, no inscription, no national seal. There wasn't an Egyptian flag in the room. The only words consisted of a small engraving on the judge's desk: "Justice Is the Foundation of Governing."
It seemed remarkable that this building, which was hosting the most important Egyptian trials since the cases of Sadat's assassins, included no symbols of the state. But perhaps such abstractions were unnecessary when the functional tools of authority were so obvious. On the left side of the chamber, a pair of heavy black metal cages has been installed to hold defendants. One cage contained Morsi; the other was occupied by some Brotherhood leaders who were also being tried today. Dozens of security officers stood throughout the courtoom. At the back, young police conscripts rested their heads on the desks and went to sleep. They seemed capable of dozing through any amount of noise.
For more than half an hour, the chanting and shouting continued. There were few foreign journalists; a number of organizations have been denied accreditations. Family members of the accused had also been prevented from attending. Among the Egyptian journalists who had come, there was little pretense of neutrality; most of them stood and shouted, "Death penalty!"
The judge, a middle-aged man named Ahmed Sabry Youssef, repeatedly called for order. He didn't have a gravel; he banged on the desk with the flat of his hand, like a substitute teacher on a bad day. At last he declared a recess, and Morsi and the others were escorted out of the cages and into a side room. In the audience, a fight broke out between a female journalist and a man from Morsi's legal team. The woman was young and she wore a brightly colored hajab; she took off her shoe and brandished it at the lawyer, which was an insult in Egypt. The lawyer grabbed his own shoe and did the same thing. The two of them faced off, shoes in their hands, and other people joined the fray, shoving and slapping at each other. Finally police charged in and broke it up. During the recess, two Egyptian journalists next to me talked about the last time they'd seen a former president in a cage.
"I was here when Mubarak appeared in court," one of the journalists said. "He didn't behave this."
"Mubarak was polite," his colleague said.
"There wasn't all of this shouting, not from the president, " the journalist said, disapprovingly. He wrote fro Al-Watan and Al-Masry al-Youm, two private papers. I asked if he beleived that Sisi would run for president. "I hope he runs," he said. "We need Sisi at this time."
Behind me, a young Chinese journalist sat rubbing his leg. Somebody had slammed him into a bench during one of the scuffles. He worked for China Radio International, a state service. We talked in Chinese, and he said he couldn't believe the scene. "This is totally chaotic," he said. "How can you tell who's who? In China, they'd have a sign for the prosecutor, for the defendant, for the lawyers." There had been no effort to separate the various groups, which was one reason why they kept fighting.

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