Thursday, February 3, 2011

Egypt is bleeding

Having written that last post, I feel the need to add that just because my expat friends have left Cairo safely, doesn't mean that Egypt is not in trouble, and that I am not worried. My point of that last post was to say that I am not really worried about my expat friends' safety. What I am praying for is the people in Tahrir and other parts throughout Cairo and Egypt fighting for democracy, freedom and justice. Actually, I am praying for all of Egypt and the future of the Egyptian people. I just heard through friends that one of the most prominent Egyptian bloggers, Sam Sandmonkey, has been arrested, and other friends that have spent every waking hour at Tahrir since this whole thing started left yesterday in the afternoon and went home to safe Maadi, because thugs were throwing molotov cocktails at them. Mubarak is not resigning, and he's using every ugly means possible short of bombing his own people to suppress this revolution. The situation in Egypt is currently bad, indeed.


  1. Sorry but the blogger you are referring to seems to be a hugely irresponsible person. The whole event is hugely irresponsible and can best be summed up by his own words:

    "We started getting calls asking people to stop protesting because "we got what we wanted" and "we need the country to start working again". People were complaining that they miss their lives. That they miss going out at night, and ordering Home Delivery. That they need us to stop so they can resume whatever existence they had before all of this. All was forgiven, the past week never happened and it's time for Unity under Mubarak's rule right now.

    To all of those people I say: NEVER!"

    See? They don't really care for anyone else but themselves, a small minority of (mostly) irritated young people and mid-age men dissatisfied with their lives, or whatever.

    Or is anarchism really the way to democracy, the most representative and guaranteeing everyone is heard?

    I am hugely amazed how most of western media thus also people are totally superficial about the event and do not really notice what most of the people here want, or do not want, at all. Only a few lights around. And I really do think that where we can forgive the French for carrying apart the Bastille in the days they did it, an uprising is not really a satisfactory measure/course of events any more, in our time. We should be more intelligent, and more responsible, please.

  2. Nobody that I have talked to has the opinions Sandmonkey talks about: in fact it seems that most of these calls have been made by people that were paid to make those calls.

    The main point here though, is that until Egypt holds free, fair and open elections, we have no idea of knowing what the people want.

    Also, at this point there is no going back. Thugs have destroyed all normalcy. People can't go back to work because their workplace has been looted or burned down. Mubarak thought that violence and harassment would make the people give up their crazy dreams, but his strategy has only showed them along with the world how awful the political system in Egypt is, and that the regime needs to step down. there's no turning back now.

  3. Sorry, I think it is again irresponsible to talk about paid calls and paid thugs, or who paid them, if you weren't actually standing by and witnessing yourself. You base your standpoint on your beliefs and prejudices.

    Here around, and I am deep inside Egypt, a lot of people are against the protests, and they are naturally angry, with no payment from anyone. Sounding exactly like many of those who called in. They are not pro-Mubarak either, they simply dislike disorder. Seems to be a rift largely between those high up in ebony towers, whose romantic ideals led to the chaos, and those with two feet fast on the ground who simply want to work and live, who are the ones who actually advance the country.

    A lot of people were back at work today already and the rest are going tomorrow. The new government is much respected already for the way they are conducting things with great care and restraint.
    While it does not come over well that the demonstrants are not at all flexible and not at all conceding.

    Most foreigners share your views, as far as I know, perhaps because "democracy" is a holy word for us. But do the aims really celebrate the means? Well, the communists certainly believed so, too.

  4. innovatsioon, you are saying that the means we find in Hosni Mubarak's Egypt: rampant torture, suppression of free speech, crumbling slums, and autocracy are acceptable means to keep stability in Egypt. We obviously have very different views when it comes to human rights.

    And again, until free, open and fair elections are held in Egypt, nobody - neither you nor I - can say how many people are on what side, and what the Egyptian people want.

  5. Hmm... until about a week ago I did not hear a word agains HM or his Egypt, even from those living here for years. Now suddenly he is a "dictator" and needs to go in 30 minutes or so?

    All I am trying to say is that a lot of Egyptians actually find the protests were too long and stubborn, leading to unnecessary clashes. Some are beginning to admit even their family and friends hold different opinions - some pro, some against and some neutral, but I do not see anyone paying attention to that side of the events or those differing egyptians at all! While the protesting ones are glorified to the extent that the foolishly dead are now called martyrs.

    I think we are quite one at human rights, they are quite simple and well spelled out black on white or what. No need necessarily to think others, if they disagree, must be below you intelligence or values, because you of course must be unerring, or what. But in real life one sometimes (quite often actually) needs to choose between not good and bad, but bad and worse. Do you protect "democracy" and let someone kill your people by hundreds, or do you yourself kill/torture or whatever someone, to keep those hundreds alive? Which would you do, J?

    Some further reading here:

    A book:
    Graham Greene "The Quiet American" - very much to the point

    And some more books, a bit light for serious academics but anyway - they offer an insight into Egypt. Hope the one on Mubarak will go to press, too.

    About free, open and fair elections... again beautifully idealistic, but HM indeed is not the one obstructing the way to those. Watch Iraq. Even West Europe is not really democratic yet, still mostly represented by the active minority rather than any real majority. Get voting stats and make your own conclusions.

    Maybe am too hard on you, but am really tired of people just copy&pasting automatic views, without even doubting that they perhaps may not understand a different country and different circumstances. Then I come here for some interesting info perhaps on Lebanon, on how or if it really differs from Egypt or why it is called the Paris of Middle East, and - again...