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Sport Death of Egypt's Nasser, 50 years ago

10:30  28 september  2020
10:30  28 september  2020 Source:   msn.com

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The history of Egypt under Gamal Abdel Nasser covers the period of Egyptian history from the Egyptian revolution of 1952, of which Gamal Abdel Nasser was one of the two principal leaders, spanning Nasser ' s presidency of Egypt from 1956, to his death in 1970.

For Nasser it was a bitter time. Early this year he had taken the risk - against the advice of most other Arab leaders - of accepting the American peace initiative and Nasser had worked intensively in the past six days to bring about a ceasefire in Jordan and a reconciliation between the warring factions.

On September 28, 1970, Gamal Abdel Nasser, Egypt's charismatic pan-Arabist president, died from a heart attack in Cairo aged 52, sending shockwaves through the country and across the Arab world.

a group of people standing in front of a crowd: On October 1, 1970, a huge crowd surrounds the coffin of Egypt's president Gamal Abdel Nasser © Provided by AFP On October 1, 1970, a huge crowd surrounds the coffin of Egypt's president Gamal Abdel Nasser Gamal Abdel Nasser sitting on a bench looking at the camera: Egyptian president, Gamal Abdel Nasser, during a press conference in 1956 © - Egyptian president, Gamal Abdel Nasser, during a press conference in 1956

That evening, all radio and television stations suddenly interrupted their programmes.

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In the 1950s, Egypt ' s president Gamal Abdel Nasser launched a project to dam the mighty Nile at Aswan in order to generate electricity for the For four years about 800 labourers and 100 technicians worked in the desert under a red-hot sun to complete the project, which cost 36 millions dollars.

When Nasser , and by extension Egypt , lost, there was relatively little left to say. The starting premise of Arab nationalism had been fatally undermined, 15 years into the 1952 revolution. Prophet Mohammed’ s death did not provoke an existential crisis; instead the Muslims began a dramatic

In a voice interspersed with crying, AFP wrote at the time, vice-president Anwar Sadat came on the air to address the nation and announce Nasser's death, at 6:15 pm local time.

"The United Arab Republic, the Arab nation and humanity at large have lost one of the most valued of men, one of the most sincere," he said.

Nasser had "passed away while standing in the vanguard of the struggle for the unity of the Arab people, and for the day of their victory".

- Massive shock -

Just a day before, Nasser had managed to get Jordan's King Hussein and Palestine Liberation Organization leader Yasser Arafat to sign a ceasefire, ending a conflict known as "Black September".

a group of people standing in front of a crowd posing for the camera: In 1970 women march in Cairo in memory of Egypt's president, Gamal Abdel Nasser © - In 1970 women march in Cairo in memory of Egypt's president, Gamal Abdel Nasser

A heavy smoker and diabetic, the state of Nasser's health had not been revealed to the public, and his death came as a massive shock.

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Gamal Abdel Nasser of Egypt was born in 1918 and died in 1970. Nasser was a pivotal figure in the recent history of the Middle East and played a highly prominent role in the 1956 Suez Crisis. Nasser has been described as the first leader of an Arab nation who challenged what was perceived as the

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In 1952, Nasser had been one of the leaders of a popular military coup that toppled Egypt's monarchy, and he became president of the new republic two years later.

A leading proponent of pan-Arab socialism, he installed a one-party regime and ruled with an iron fist for 16 years.

His greatest victory was nationalising the Suez Canal in 1956, sparking a crisis in which Britain, France and Israel colluded to attack Egypt.

After 10 days of fighting and with tensions soaring, Britain and France ceded and the canal reopened in 1957 under Egyptian control.

Nasser also oversaw the construction of the Aswan High Dam, inaugurated in 1964.

His greatest defeat came in June 1967 and the Six-Day War, in which Israel defeated Egypt, Jordan and Syria and occupied, among other territories, Egypt's Sinai Peninsula.

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History Of Egyptian Military Dictatorship Pt4: The US scored a major strategic victory turning Sadat and the Egyptian military into their Middle East ally.

Egypt , the biggest Arab state, which controls the strategic Suez Canal, has been among the largest recipients of U. S . military and economic aid since its 1979 peace treaty with U. S . ally Israel. The 70-year-old Badie was first jailed under President Gamal Abdel Nasser nearly 50 years ago

- Night of mourning -

An official mourning period of 40 days was declared.

Mass outpourings of grief followed soon after Nasser's death was announced. In the upmarket Cairo suburb of Heliopolis, men, women and children wept in sorrow. In working-class neighbourhoods, crowds gathered.

All through the night people expressed their shock and disbelief.

A crowd marched to Nasser's residence, then to the presidential palace where his body had been taken. The authorities called on the army and tanks to block the roads.

In the northern city of Alexandria, shops were shuttered and cinema screenings were interrupted.

- Trauma -

On September 29, condolences flooded in from around the world and newspapers headlined with the tragic news.

In Cairo, life came to a standstill. Offices and shops were all closed. Young people travelled to the city centre from the suburbs, carrying flowers and holding portraits of Nasser.

- Painful farewell -

On October 1, Nasser's coffin, draped in the Egyptian flag, was placed on a gun carriage drawn by eight horses and surrounded by 40 army generals.

Five thousand military school cadets marched behind them in the procession. Nasser's army colleagues took their position, followed by heads of state and foreign leaders.

Helicopters and fighter jets flew above Cairo. A 21-gun salute was fired.

A crowd estimated at several million-strong followed along the route of the procession, stretching some 15 kilometres (nine miles). "Long live Nasser," they chanted, "There is no God but Allah."

Orderly at first, the ceremony descended into chaos as the crowd forced the carriage to stop several times.

Calm was only restored inside the mosque where the imam presided over a religious ceremony.

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