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Law school’s Egypt program temporarily shut down due to protests

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In light of recent protests in Egypt which have resulted in looting and fires in the streets as demonstrators demand the resignation of President Hosni Mubarak, the Indiana University School of Law – Indianapolis program, in association with the Alexandria and Cairo University Faculties of Law has halted operations, at least for the time being.

The only program of its kind in Egypt where an American university teaches courses to students that result in the Egyptian students receiving the same master of laws degree as the students who attend courses at the school’s American campus, cohorts of about 65 students each have started each January since 2008. The 2011 cohort started classes earlier this month.

Frank Emmert, executive director of the law school’s Center for International and Comparative Law and director of the Egypt program, left Cairo on Friday and arrived in Indianapolis Saturday morning. He taught the first block of classes for the Egypt program for almost three weeks, up to and including Thursday, when he expected to leave Cairo due to the instability of the area, but that flight was delayed and he was booked on a Friday flight instead.

He said he did not expect the protests to fizzle out until the president resigned, and added the protestors, mostly middle-class, educated citizens, had grown more confident each day since the violence erupted a week ago.

Swadesh S. Kalsi, a retired attorney who practiced at Krieg DeVault and was scheduled to teach a course in Egypt starting today, left Cairo Sunday. As of this morning, the latest Emmert had heard was that Kalsi and his wife made it to Frankfurt, Germany, but had experienced delays on his flight back to the United States due to the weather. The important thing was that Kalsi was out of Cairo and safe, Emmert said.

While there were no other American professors for the program who were still in Egypt as of today, he said he and others involved in the program were concerned for their Egyptian colleagues.

The unrest in Egypt had been building, Emmert said, partially due to the economy and difficulties faced by the middle class.

Part of the reason for the law school’s program, which is funded by the United States Agency for International Development and has received funding for the 2011 cohort of students, was to help the country’s economy by training business lawyers. While many of the students who have started since the program’s first class in 2008 have had a connection to or interest in practicing business law, a large number of students also enrolled due to their interest in rule of law issues, including judges in the court that is equivalent to the federal Circuit courts in the United States.

“They don’t want to do it to help their government, they want to do it to help their country,” he said.

Because courses for the program are taught in blocks, Emmert said those involved with the program have decided to wait and see how things are going closer to mid-February when the next block of classes is scheduled to start.

A more in-depth article about the Egypt program will be published in the Feb. 16-March 1, 2011, print edition of Indiana Lawyer.
 

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  1. I grew up on a farm and live in the county and it's interesting that the big industrial farmers like Jeff Shoaf don't live next to their industrial operations...

  2. So that none are misinformed by my posting wihtout a non de plume here, please allow me to state that I am NOT an Indiana licensed attorney, although I am an Indiana resident approved to practice law and represent clients in Indiana's fed court of Nth Dist and before the 7th circuit. I remain licensed in KS, since 1996, no discipline. This must be clarified since the IN court records will reveal that I did sit for and pass the Indiana bar last February. Yet be not confused by the fact that I was so allowed to be tested .... I am not, to be clear in the service of my duty to be absolutely candid about this, I AM NOT a member of the Indiana bar, and might never be so licensed given my unrepented from errors of thought documented in this opinion, at fn2, which likely supports Mr Smith's initial post in this thread: http://caselaw.findlaw.com/us-7th-circuit/1592921.html

  3. When I served the State of Kansas as Deputy AG over Consumer Protection & Antitrust for four years, supervising 20 special agents and assistant attorneys general (back before the IBLE denied me the right to practice law in Indiana for not having the right stuff and pretty much crushed my legal career) we had a saying around the office: Resist the lure of the ring!!! It was a take off on Tolkiem, the idea that absolute power (I signed investigative subpoenas as a judge would in many other contexts, no need to show probable cause)could corrupt absolutely. We feared that we would overreach constitutional limits if not reminded, over and over, to be mindful to not do so. Our approach in so challenging one another was Madisonian, as the following quotes from the Father of our Constitution reveal: The essence of Government is power; and power, lodged as it must be in human hands, will ever be liable to abuse. We are right to take alarm at the first experiment upon our liberties. I believe there are more instances of the abridgement of freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments by those in power than by violent and sudden usurpations. Liberty may be endangered by the abuse of liberty, but also by the abuse of power. All men having power ought to be mistrusted. -- James Madison, Federalist Papers and other sources: http://www.constitution.org/jm/jm_quotes.htm RESIST THE LURE OF THE RING ALL YE WITH POLITICAL OR JUDICIAL POWER!

  4. My dear Mr Smith, I respect your opinions and much enjoy your posts here. We do differ on our view of the benefits and viability of the American Experiment in Ordered Liberty. While I do agree that it could be better, and that your points in criticism are well taken, Utopia does indeed mean nowhere. I think Madison, Jefferson, Adams and company got it about as good as it gets in a fallen post-Enlightenment social order. That said, a constitution only protects the citizens if it is followed. We currently have a bevy of public officials and judicial agents who believe that their subjectivism, their personal ideology, their elitist fears and concerns and cause celebs trump the constitutions of our forefathers. This is most troubling. More to follow in the next post on that subject.

  5. Yep I am not Bryan Brown. Bryan you appear to be a bigger believer in the Constitution than I am. Were I still a big believer then I might be using my real name like you. Personally, I am no longer a fan of secularism. I favor the confessional state. In religious mattes, it seems to me that social diversity is chaos and conflict, while uniformity is order and peace.... secularism has been imposed by America on other nations now by force and that has not exactly worked out very well.... I think the American historical experiment with disestablishmentarianism is withering on the vine before our eyes..... Since I do not know if that is OK for an officially licensed lawyer to say, I keep the nom de plume.

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