Hosni Mubarak reminisces about 1973 war in video message

Screengrab from Mubarak Archives on YouTube.
Updated 16 October 2019

Hosni Mubarak reminisces about 1973 war in video message

  • Former Egyptian president shares his memories on 46th anniversary of conflict
  • YouTube video racks almost 150,000 views in four hours and channel attracts 11,000 subscribers

RIYADH: The first video posted by “Mubarak’s Archive,” a YouTube channel launched in the name of former Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak, was viewed almost than 150,000 times within four hours of being uploaded on Tuesday night. The channel attracted 11,000 subscribers in that time.

During the 26-minute video, Mubarak talked about the October 1973 Arab-Israeli War and praised the Egyptian Air Force for the role it had played. He was the commander of the Air Force and deputy minister of defense at the time of the three-week conflict.

“The Egyptian Air Force fully carried out its duties in striking the enemy’s operations center in the October 1973 War,” he said.

At the start of the video, Mubarak said: “To begin, I have to talk about late President Anwar Sadat, who took the decision to go to war. He was a very brave and courageous man. Today as we celebrate the Oct. 6 (1973) war victory, the same date he was killed (by assassins in 1981), I have to salute him.”

The former president also talked about the June 1967 Six-Day War, which he argued was not actually a war.

“We were hit without prior notice and without having a plan,” he said. “I believe I was in an operation center in mid-May and I returned to the airport where they informed me that there was a state of emergency had been announced.

“A commissioner from the General Command came on June 3 and said that there was a political demonstration and we would send troops to Sinai. The division’s leader had no idea who was getting in and out.”

Mubarak’s son Alaa had earlier posted a message to his Twitter account announcing the video featuring his father. “President Mubarak remembers some October War memories…tonight at 8.30 p.m,” he wrote.

Mubarak, who was deposed following an uprising in 2011 after almost 30 years as Egyptian President, was last seen publicly on December 26, 2018, when he testified at the trial of his ousted successor, Mohammed Morsi, and others.
 


‘Juhayman: 40 years on:’ Arab News’ multimedia project tells full story of 1979 Makkah siege

Updated 19 November 2019

‘Juhayman: 40 years on:’ Arab News’ multimedia project tells full story of 1979 Makkah siege

  • Featuring interviews with key players such as Prince Turki Al-Faisal, Saudi Arabia’s English-language newspaper tells the full story of the unthinkable event that cast a shadow over its society for decades
  • As part of its Deep Dive series online, featuring documentary-style multimedia stories, Arab News looks back at this event in a way no Saudi publication has done before

Forty years ago this week, on Nov. 20, 1979, a group of militants did the unthinkable: They seized the Grand Mosque in Makkah, taking people hostage inside in a two-week standoff with Saudi forces.

Until recently, the crisis remained too painful for Saudis to examine fully for almost four decades. Now Arab News, Saudi Arabia’s leading English-language daily, is looking back at the event in a way that no publication in the Kingdom has done before: with a multimedia Deep Dive story online at arabnews.com/juhayman-40-years-on.

“The 1979 attack on Makkah’s  Grand Mosque halted major social development in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, negatively affecting a progressing nation for generations to come,” said Rawan Radwan, the lead reporter on the project, who is based in Jeddah. “At Arab News, we delved deep into the matter to uncover the story of Juhayman, the terrorist who seized the holiest site and shook the Islamic world. It’s a story that for many years struck fear in the hearts of the Saudi people, yet has not been covered in such depth in local or international media — until now.”

Arab News launched its Deep Dive series earlier this year as an engaging new way to showcase its in-depth storytelling on key topics, enlivened by audio, video and animated graphics. Its first story was an in-depth account of the space mission by the first Arab astronaut, Saudi Prince Sultan bin Salman; the siege of Makkah is another story from the Kingdom’s past that it chose to revisit.

Extensive research was conducted over two months in several cities, including Makkah itself, and involved teams in five of Arab News’ bureaus: Jeddah, Riyadh, Dubai, London and Beirut. The team interviewed key players such as Prince Turki Al-Faisal, then head of the General Intelligence Directorate, and re-created what happened in a series of interactive maps.

 

Juhayman: 40 years on
On the anniversary of the 1979 attack on Makkah's Grand Mosque, Arab News tells the full story of an unthinkable event that shocked the Islamic world and cast a shadow over Saudi society for decades
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