Friday, July 29, 2011

Egypt: Six Months After the Revolution

By Lama Tawakkol
CAIRO, Egypt – Earlier this year, January 25th saw the start of massive protests in Egypt that lasted 18 days and toppled dictator Hosni Mubarak after 30 years in power.
This movement has been termed a revolution and gave the Egyptians a great deal of pride. 
Six months later, the Egyptian people are at different ends as to what should be happening and how they should react to it.
Some people believe that they should let things be and see where it goes without causing more trouble, believing the continuous disapprovals to be the cause for Egypt’s current state of political, economic and social instability.
These people don’t want to see the military turn against its people, or Egypt ensnared in civil war and turned into Libya, Syria or Iraq.
On the other side of the debate are the people who are camping once again in Tahrir Square and their advocates. This sector is skeptical of the Supreme Council for Armed Forces and abhors the way the council is administering the country’s affairs.
They believe that there should be more progress and more tangible steps towards true reform, steps that reflect the revolution’s principles and aims.
These protestors have several valid points against the military and are gaining more supporters every day.
Among their demands, they have called for the relocation of Mubarak from a Sharm El Sheikh hospital to the prison hospital.
Further, they want complete independence for the judicial system and the replacement of the attorney general hired by Mubarak. He is considered part of the old system, having kept quiet about all the crimes before.
They are also vehemently shouting for the immediate stop to the court martialing of civilians and the manipulation of the media and press.
They want to see the police officers who killed the martyrs tried and they want all state institutions to be purified from the venom of Mubarak’s men and their gangs.
Moreover, they want officials to stop lying to and underestimating them. They want the people in charge to maintain the revolution and honor their friends and families who died in search of a brighter future for their country.
Their trust in the people running the country is quickly diminishing until it will soon reach rock bottom. They see an organization slowly giving them tidbits, trying to silence them.
The people’s skepticism is rising, especially as Mubarak’s trial looms nearer. Their sarcasm is unsurpassed as they bitterly joke and tweet that Mubarak will die before August 3rd, when the trial is scheduled to begin.
One can hardly blame them when his health seems perfectly intact – until word spreads that he’s being moved to his rightful place in prison. Only then does Mubarak remember that something hurts somewhere.
These days, we are hearing reports about how he is refusing to eat and living only on water and liquids. Are we supposed to take the hint that we aren’t going to be seeing him in court next week?
I was one of the military’s biggest defenders back in February. I was filled with hope and gratitude at the noble countrymen who had saved an entire people from doom at the hands of a tyrant.
I knew I would forever view them from a whole new perspective.
Sadly, these days I am adamant that they do what the people want. Their actions now are ruining everything they built immediately after Mubarak stepped down.
By their unwise public statements, their accusations of treason against activists and aggressive military manner, the generals of SCAF are obliterating their public image.
One knows not what to think. Is the military merely lacking in political savvy or are their true colors finally nearing the surface?
We have to wait and see.
Even though Egypt’s political and social standing is extremely unstable at the moment given the conflicting points of view on the horizon, one thing remains unequivocally true: all Egyptians have Egypt’s best interests at heart and want to see it rise and shine.
I pray to God that hopefully the day will soon come when the world will see a new Egypt emerge.
Until we meet again … on August 3rd.

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