I’m quoting Ayn Rand to express my faith in the truthfulness with which the leading forces within the government work on the concept of a state that deserves to be seen as pursuing a truly democratic and caring government, despite the deafening choirs who evoke scenarios with comparing circumstance of injustice from the past while only feeding resentments.
By no stretch of imagination will the Muslim brotherhood related Islamists in Egypt have a chance to gain back their lost political ground which they owe to the momentary lapse of reason by a few mentally exhausted voters in the infamous run-off election in 2012 while the country had gone through its first biggest post-revolutionary national-division trauma.
Demonstrations advocating the reinstatement of the ‘legitimate leadership’ of Morsi, which are now attempting to take their plea in front of international courts will not lead to repeat what became a symbol of weakness, betrayal and corruption: the reign of the Muslim brotherhood. Weakness because: unlike Morsi’s islamistic counterpart in Tunisia, whose PM resigned and with him the Islamistic government, Morsi & the brotherhood still thirst for power, seeking to reestablish their autocratic reign with the means of democracy. Betrayal relates to the unforgivable abuse of homeland, while using the country merely as a base camp to put through an obscure agenda of outdated and outlandish concept of state, better known as ‘caliphate’. Corruption became more and more obvious within the year of reign since the brothers used the opportunity to position their forces into all governmental administrations, giving favors to loyalists, yet imposing unfavorable obstacles on ‘normal’ citizens.
As far as I can see it still holds: ‘They promised a dream and delivered a nightmare’. – No court verdict coming from abroad in this matter will be accepted in Egypt, no matter how and by whom a possible western-democracy-body-finding will be conveyed.
While in Egypt the opposition forces battle against what they unanimously now label the ‘police state’ the year started off with a humorous overlay. Courtesy to Vodafone, an activist initiated a provoking and obvious attempt to ridicule the Egyptian judiciary involving the prosecutor general, which had been gladly and gratefully picked up from the local media (but yes, it had been entertaining). Now the story is going global, already in variations. From Hurghada, a touristic hot-spot, we hear about an UFO that had been seen, photographed and it is said to now being examined by the Minister of Environment..
The otherwise depressing daily accounts of protests, torching police cars and demonstrations, usually rather quickly leading to violence and clashes, is routinely answered with tear-gas in amounts one can almost smell while only reading about it.
Truly devastating is the capacity of the few who try to harm the whole.
Most demonstrations and protests ‘today’ are still acts of retribution, revenge and solidarity.- A false sense of solidarity I would like state. It’s like trying to abolish nature’s instinct-driven gift of self-preservation when demanding the rights for democracy to be granted and applied on to those who aim to undermine a democratic concept of state and show no intention to change their ideology which, in the case of Egypt in relation to Islamism, is not compatible with the modern civilization the county agreed to pursue. Defending these rights for undeserving groups is downright suicidal and shows a weak understanding of human nature and a hardly developed political instinct.
“It is never wrong to be on the side of freedom – never.” What might have been true in a certain historical context is becoming a matter of reconsideration since it rings as a platitude if applied here in Egypt today. This quote however sums up the dilemma most of the political left is captured in, since the term ‘freedom’ needs to be freed from abusive pretense first. – If someone asked me “Can a democratic government forbid protests and put demonstrators in prison just like this?” I’d say: “Why would you give your life for someone who defends forces which, back then [December 17th ff] had no problem killing you? Why do you support people, no matter how politically naïve, in demonstrating the demolition of the state you won’t have space to live your life in, once they succeeded?” – In today’s world, no state is strong and stable enough, that the government can do away with forces that seek its destruction; in Egypt, which is in the stage of state building, it’s downright dangerous to allow and support forces that are violently rocking a still shaking boat! Three years of ongoing unrest require consolidation first. The activists, who are out in the streets fighting for what they think is ‘the people’s freedom’ are fighting an untimely battle.
There is a worldwide trend that the people are divided in understanding that the fight for ‘freedom’ became counterproductive: eventually a fruitless attempt to overcome one’s own helplessness in face of a governmental elite, who has built up all means to silent and minimize every protest that opposes or interferes with their own agenda. Protesters usually get ‘rewarded’ with a set of laws and bylaws, in varying degrees, or nothing really changes. They get beaten up, imprisoned and, if seen fit, excluded. All this is legally backed-up with regulations, having been created according to the governments’ assessment of necessity within the process of democracy.
Democracy really means that the individual has the opportunity to shape his life within the rules of the existing frameworks.
Egypt has achieved the full potential of becoming a political masterpiece of democracy-in-progress. As the much grounded voice of Egypt’s political mainstream, Alaa Al-Aswany, recently had been quoted with “Democracy is our homework”.
‘Egypt is the Mother of the World’ – is a time-honored yet still timely saying. Integrity is the ability to preserve identity.
If I see what has happened in Egypt on January 25th 2011 as the prelude to what happened on June 30th 2013 I have no doubt that Egypt will become one of the few countries, where the people really do have a say.
Egypt is becoming a role model in dealing with defying opponents for countries who are going to have future issues with their citizens who won’t want to understand, that the neatness of their streets and public buildings, most of which had been paid for on governmental debt overload, the high pensions and expenses of their governmental administrators and public servants come at a suffocatingly high prize. Decades of overspending and structural joblessness have been accumulating. No amount of persuasion while mastering the art of ignoring the facts can rekindle the spirit of the people to put their trust again in their governments.-
Ways are still short in Egypt.
The people of Egypt with their proved capacity to endure hardships and injustices in hope of times to become better for themselves, do so with a basic assumption that the authorities understand they fare better when they make allowance for public demands and necessities.
The interim government is challenged to ridden the country of a real existing security threat veiled as political forces, yet factually they are primitive minded individuals driven by lowly and base intentions of resentment and bare of any consideration for the amount of death, destruction & horror they create, abbreviated referred to as ‘terrorists’.
Coming from a Western culture, where political issues are being discussed about in length and breadths and in all controversy it really is impossible to make sense of the either-or discussion, either the wholly despicable brotherhood or the wholly glorious government.
Until today I can only see this way of handling the existing problem of terrorism through a breathtaking ‘cleansing’ based on the official proclamation of the Muslim brotherhood as a terrorist-organization, as an ‘oriental’ approach; one simply doesn’t ‘defame’ – or publicly doubt – the one who one has decided to support. Thus there is no space for even one shade of grey. It’s black or white or prison-cell.
Yet: until now, none of the prominent activists has come up with a valid alternative to the as a local journalist phrased it ‘overambitious security solution’, which every person with an average amount of compassion finds more than hard to bear. Taking into consideration, that bystanders get arrested while their crime consists of simply being around at a scene of demonstration for making angry remarks at police officers does make one feel like a traitor to humanity, if one won’t shout out loud against this practice of arbitrary application of a very controversy law. The imposed dilemma is: you are expected to stay away while you feel the urge to involve yourself. And people do stay away; but quite some of them not because they agree. They stay away because they know they’d be next and they understand enough that being imprisoned won’t help anyone but only make their own lives miserable. – This is the despair of the idealistic citizens who feel they owe their ideals the redemption of deed to prevent ‘that the state falls back into the notorious pre-Jan25 structures, the infamous autocratic police-state’.
Since nobody seems to bring forward a sound and elaborated proposal to adequately counter the ongoing protests it doesn’t come as a surprise that in anticipation of acts of vandalism and physical harm, the government is preparing to secure the vote on the constitution on January 14th/15th with abundant presence of security forces and specially trained personnel.
The vote is increasingly been seen as a make-or-break for the political alliances in power, formed after July 3rd.
To give an idea about how seriously the government is responding to the announced threats to ‘do everything in their might to ruin the referendum’:
We shall see the deployment of about 160 thousand officers and conscripts in the altogether 30.317 committees, to protect citizens and respond to all threats and emergency situations that can come up in and around the polling stations. The idea is to provide a safe environment for the 52,742,139 million people, who are eligible and expected to cast their ballots. Specially trained troops are to make sure that the voters can be received feeling safe, and how to act during emergency situations. As well those forces had been trained in the most appropriate methods to deal with problems and emergency situations that may affect the conduct of the electoral process both inside and outside of the committees, and how to counter possible terrorist threats. The presence of ambulances and possibility of medical evacuation in critical situations is as well part of the security plan. Especially the elderly and those with special needs will be provided with emergency measures if needed.
The voting committees and all balloting stations will probably be the safest places in Egypt during the two days.
Insane? From a detached point of view: definitely.- But remember how Western governments respond to bomb-threats in train-stations or on airports when only an abandoned bag is being observed! Considering that high ranking police officers, soldiers and a police-headquarter had in fact being assaulted, that torching police cars is now a piece of news you hear on daily basis.. I concede I find the measure is justified, since participating in the vote has become a question of politically settling accounts and more: a show-down to display the majority consent with the well-known imperfections of the government. The capacity of the majority of Egyptians to compromise is really what this vote is about.-
While some Western media outlets are making fun of the Egyptian army, mouthing on a few random face-book pictures showing Egypt’s special troops in red protective combat uniforms which their ‘correspondents’ found funny, picked up and forwarded to their home-gazettes, the editors are well advised to entertain similar scenarios in their home-countries once their home mainstream chooses to snatch off their silent dissent in exchange for outrage, in case they discover they have nothing left to lose.
Here in Egypt a few try to screw to whole. In the West the whole still doesn’t get it.