All Internet Access Severed in Egypt as Crackdown Grows

First Social Media, Then Text Messaging, Now Egyptians Report Whole Internet Down

Early today access to Social Media outlets, including Facebook and Twitter, were reportedly cut off in Egypt. Not long after reports emerged of the SMS text messaging service for cell phones being blocked.

Now though, several outlets are reporting that the entire Internet is down for Egyptians, an apparent effort by President Hosni Mubarak to make coordination amongst the protesters more difficult ahead of massive rallies expected on Friday.

The Egyptian government seems to be moving far more broadly in its censorship and far quicker even than the Tunisian government, which saw its efforts to stifle dissent fail and, eventually, its president flee into exile.

President Mubarak has a stronger military though, and billions of dollars in annual donations from the Obama Administration which has come out vigorously against regime change in Egypt, saying the pro-democracy protesters should be content with promises of extremely minor reforms.

This has led Western analysts to guess that Mubarak’s regime probably will eventually prevail over the protesters, though the censorship of the entire Internet seems likely to anger protesters all the more, and meetings for Friday prayers will likely serve as a chance for Mubarak’s opponents to coordinate a response.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.