Egypt has officially been in a state of emergency since 1981, allowing the government extraordinary powers such as the ability to arrest and detain someone forever for no reason. The Egyptian government has just extended the emergency powers for two years, using Guantanamo and the Patriot Act as political cover.

New York Times:

The prime minister tried to explain why the government had not been able to fulfill a promise made by Mr. Mubarak in 2005 to replace the emergency law with specific antiterrorism legislation. He said that the government was having difficulty finding the proper balance between protecting the nation and preserving civil liberties, comparing the challenge to President Obama’s difficulties in closing down the prison at Guantánamo Bay and comparing the law to the Patriot Act, adopted in the United States after Sept. 11, 2001.

The government also pointed to bombing attacks in the Sinai Peninsula and the recent prosecution of a Hezbollah cell convicted of planning terrorist acts in Egypt as evidence of the need for preserving the emergency law.

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