The word “Jew” when said in Egypt still causes paranoia, said Egyptian film director Amir Ramses, speaking after the ban on his film “Jews of Egypt” was lifted this week.
Venting his fury at Egypt’s national security for barring the film earlier this month, Ramses told Al Arabiya English on Saturday of his ironic journey towards obtaining his permit.
“Whenever anything is mentioned about an Egyptian Jew, (Egypt’s) national security has to get involved,” Ramses said, adding that his production had initially attempted to break such ideologies through exploring the life of Egypt’s Jewish community before the second Arab-Israeli war in 1956.
“For average Egyptian, there is no differentiation between the words ‘Jew,’ ‘Israeli’ and ‘Zionist.’ This is an offensive perspective in Egypt, which is just as offensive as considering Muslim being responsible for the Taliban’s actions.
“Egyptian Jews have as much right to be discussed as anyone else … they have as much right to live in Egypt,” Ramses said.
Eman El-Shenawi / Al-Arabiya