Egypt Freedom Rally Hijacked by Islamists

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A rally in Egypt was supposed to show political unity among various groups. Instead, hardline Islamists showed their strength.

Tens of thousands of Egyptians gathered in Cairo's Tahrir Square Friday seeking political freedom.

Egyptians from the liberal party were there to support a measure that would set guidelines for a new constitution and limit what they fear is a growing, disproportionate Islamist influence.

But by the end of the day, the Muslim demonstrators had taken over, chanting slogans like "Allah is Great" and "Islamic, Islamic, not socialist, not communist."

Some freedom advocates dismissed the Muslim protests as a publicity stunt.

"If that's everybody they have, then the news is good to us, not to them," declared Shadi Taha, a spokesman for the secular-oriented Al Ghad Party.  

"It's a public stunt that they want to show," he said. "They want to pull some muscle in front of everybody. We're just gonna let them have their day."

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