SpyCast 11.28.23
Ep 613 | 11.28.23

“The Eye of Horus: Egyptian Intelligence” – with Dina Rezk

Show Notes


Dina Rezk (LinkedIn) joins Andrew (TwitterLinkedIn) to discuss Egyptian intelligence. Dina is an Associate Professor of Modern Middle Eastern History at the University of Reading. 

What You’ll Learn


  • Egyptian leadership & intelligence
  • The intelligence landscape of Egypt
  • Egypt’s relationship with neighboring countries
  • Ashraf Marwan’s story from the Egyptian perspective


  • Leadership, power, and opposition
  • International perspectives and changing views

And much, much more …

Episode Notes

This week on SpyCast, Andrew is joined by Dina Rezk to discuss all things Egyptian intelligence. Dina is a lecturer at the University of Reading where she teaches courses in modern Middle Eastern history with a focus on intelligence and security, and she was a former colleague of Andrew’s at the University of Warwick. In this episode, Dina walks Andrew through the intelligence landscape of Egypt: its history, major challenges, and the leaders who have shaped Egyptian national security into what it is today. Tune in to learn more about Egypt’s position in the modern Middle East and beyond. 


The importance of the Nile River to both ancient and modern history cannot be overstated. The Nile, known widely as “the source of life,” is the longest river on Earth and runs through 11 African countries. After this episode, check out our interview with Wilson Boinett to learn more about how The Nile has impacted Kenyan history and intelligence. 

Quotes of the Week

“I think that's one of the ways in which the Egyptian Intelligence Service sort of conceives of its primary responsibility. It's about maintaining internal security, and particularly at the moment you know, since 2014, I would say sort of eliminating any sort of political opposition, any possibility of political opposition.” – Dina Rezk.




*Beginner Resources*

*Featured Resource*

  • The Arab World and Western Intelligence: Analysing the Middle East, 1956-1981 (Intelligence, Surveillance and Secret Warfare), D. Rezk (Edinburgh University Press, 2018) 



  • Making the Arab World: Nasser, Qutb, and the Clash That Shaped the Middle East, F. A. Gerges (Princeton University Press, 2018) 
  • Egypt on the Brink: From Nasser to Mubarak, T. Osman (Yale University Press, 2011)
  • Nasser: The Last Arab, S. K. Aburish (Thomas Dunne Books, 2004)
  • Orientalism, E. W. Said (Vintage Publishing, 1979) 



Primary Sources 

*Wildcard Resource*

  • “Intelligence” in Egypt goes back as far as the ancient times of pyramids and pharaohs. One of the earliest accounts of the impact of spies and propaganda in Ancient Egypt is the Battle of Kadesh, a major conflict against the Hittite Empire around 1275 BC. 
  • Check out this relief seen inside the Great Temple of Ramses II depicting an ancient view of interrogation.