Wednesday, 2 May 2012

We Always Knew The Road Was Long

I made the choice of not writing about politics lately but the few live feeds, videos and pictures I had just watched force me to pen those scribbled thoughts. Once again and almost one year later, just like an exact replica of the Abbaseya battle, a video was shared online of General El Reweny - one of the SCAF crew who once blatantly admitted on TV that he sometimes spreads rumors just to calm the public outrage in the street - trying to negotiate with the masses during the sit-in by the Ministry of Defense. The video uploader edited the footage showing the tensed general talking to some people from behind a fence while holding his own chin with a sharp, vindictive look as a threatening sign that simply means: “I will show you.” Some of the YouTube comments that never cease to amaze me, mention that by pointing at his chin he meant to tell someone you have a beard, and you’ re religious. At that moment, I just knew that when it gets dark, the protesters will be attacked.

A few hours later, the feeds received were pictures of wounded men, not all Islamists like it was first mentioned. In fact, a member of 6th of April movement was one of the first injured. Then reports about thugs armed with swords and shotguns attacking the peaceful protesters from side streets and from on top of the Abbaseya bridge while setting fire to some nearby buildings using Molotov cocktails. A little later, there was the sad news of the first martyr along with several injured by shot guns and also stories about live bullets. It has been months since I have seen pictures of victims with pellets in their backs reminding me of the good old days. The same expected and repeated scenario really feels like those reoccurring dreams we don’t know how to get rid of.

About who is there and why, I don’t have to agree with everyone’s life ideology to acknowledge their right to peacefully protest. I actually think it’s a good idea to change some tactics and head to the Ministry of Defense. The “millioneyat” in Tahrir became such a trend for the past 15 months that I believe SCAF used the “let them be for a day” attitude towards it. They withdraw the police and army forces from the square and its surroundings areas, as if they’re saying: We’ll allow you to have your day but we won’t secure anything or anyone, you deal with it. No real change ever followed these big events, especially when they lasted for a single day. On the first anniversary of the revolution on Jan 25th, 2012 for example, when millions took to the streets, not a single reform has followed. I think SCAF are getting slightly better at this filthy game called politics.

The tension always rises when the generals at the M.O.D feel surrounded by protesters. The chants, signs, cameras and live feeds must feel like living a nightmare with for their full, deluded egos in front of the troops. As usual, pictures and videos of the event are shared all over the internet in a matter of seconds. We have learned from experience that the “recruited” thugs are the first line of offense to disperse the masses, so once again, a larger number of armed civilians magically stormed out from the surrounding streets of the sit-in area and initiated a second attack. They Make me feel like they have absolutely no life and they’re just used as slaves who live in inhuman bunkers underneath those residential areas that surrounds the generals' headquarters, only to come out like hungry, rabid dogs with a simple whistle from master SCAF. Directly or indirectly, the authorities contact those paid thugs and order them to attack our peaceful protesters usually when the night falls. They simply go and do the job, killing and injuring whoever is around. Can it be less obvious that SCAF have so much blood on their worn out, wrinkled hands?

A while ago when I was writing those few lines, there was another video of a thug shooting one of the protesters who was filming the attack, and we could hear him scream in pain as he was hit. Just a little later, the name, address and pictures of the shooter - retrieved from his profile - was shared all over the internet with a “Wanted for Retribution” caption. Other than the funny fact that today’s criminal thugs have Facebook accounts, this time it was much quicker than the case of the famous eye-sniper. The revolutionaries are also getting better.
Now the shooter who’s nickname is “Baskota” must have gone back hiding in the bunkers underneath the buildings of Abbaseya waiting for the next "job."

In Egypt as well as in Syria and other nations throughout the region, the system employ their Baskotas  to do their dirty work. In most if not all cases, those same thugs are first caught for drugs or assault and from then on, they are "used" to protect that system. I can't really blame them because they are truly held by the cojones; they are simply a product of a deadly mix of extreme poverty, illiteracy and criminal records which are there to stay till the day they die. On the other side of the map, uncle Sam doesn't give a flying flick about true democracy in this region -or any other for that matter. Selling and shipping internationally-banned nerve gas is just one clear example of how true democracy is "encouraged." Why do you think that after 15 months, the Interior Ministry wasn't reshuffled? They are all still protecting the same system Baskota is dedicating his life to.

I still find some people who are usually pro-demonstrations and sympathetic with the revolution deny that same right to the Islamists - and whoever else was and/or still there at the sit-in by lamely commenting: “Why would they go to the Ministry of Defense? Do they want to burn Egypt?” Sounds familiar?If someone really believes in freedom of rights and freedom of expression, they cannot be seasonal about it and choose when and with whom those rights can be applied. As I said, being liberal doesn’t mean you have to agree with the political or religion inclinations of everyone, but to agree on their basic rights, and expressing themselves is one of the fundamental rights. Whether it’s Adel Imam, Mina Daniel, or a poor woman in “nekab,” we are all humans and we are all born free.
In hard times like these, our salvation will only come after forgetting about our petty differences and uniting. We have to understand that for now, we only have one common “real” enemy. A much harder enemy to beat because he creeps on us from the inside.

More feeds came later about locating a member of 6th of April movement who was abducted this morning from the M.O.D sit-in and who was found in the desert by the Fayoum road. Another video of thugs caught by protesters was shared, which seems very familiar to those we once watched during the battles at Mohamed Mahmoud and the Cabinet. They openly admitted to the camera that they have taken part in the battle of the camel, and all the following attacks since then and that they are paid around 200 L.E per event. I think we all heard this many, many times before. The majority have I.D’s of the fallen Democratic Party while others are police and army soldiers in civilian clothes. A recent picture showed a “thug” attacking the protesters while wearing the one and only black boot belonging to the armed forces that he probably forgot to take off, totally uncovering his poor obvious camouflage.

There is a specific reason why most of the lower ranks are chosen to be illiterate. They can easily be brainwashed by the generals, convincing them that we, "the revolution people," are the enemy who wants to burn the country down. The poor young men blindly believe what their superiors are repeating and along with watching state TV, it's a true foggy display of the devolution of the mind that shouldn’t even exist in the year 2012. Same as Baskota, those 20-year-olds are also serving the mighty system, with different motives in minds -or what's left from them- but with illiteracy, you can certainly uneducate, contain and control the masses.

I will end my rambling with three nagging, unanswered questions and maybe the non-existing parliament can have some  explanation.
Under what excuse is today's National TV not accepting to host specific presidential candidates? How come there is no investigation concerning all this gas and "solar" deliberate spillage which is done by the police and army, knowing that there are multiple videos of this crime? And finally, Is there anyone investigating all the recent fires throughout the country and don't you see any pattern?

I recently realized that writing or worrying too much about politics and over analyzing each and every situation might not be the healthiest thing to do. It is what it is indeed and we’re in the middle of an ongoing revolution which will only end when it time comes and it demands met. Live and let live.
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