These are some serious times. All I can see around us is just violence and crime…
Two million people in Tahrir Square clearly wasn’t enough. “President” Mubarak still hasn’t got the message.
On Wednesday, undercover police officers hired by the Mubarak dictatorship attacked the demonstrators occupying the Square. Since then, at least five people have been killed, and over eight hundred injured. The widely-cited media-friendly phrase is “pro-Mubarak crowds”, failing to mention the small fact that these people are being paid by the regime; the same regime the American government have been paying to keep in power for the last thirty-one years.
The idea of a popular uprising in support of Mubarak, when half of the population of eighty million live on less than one dollar per day, is not only inaccurate, but impossible. It is another attempt to distract from the real issue, and the real issue is a simple one; poor people will not accept their poverty for ever whilst the President lives in palaces.
As hip-hop artist Lowkey pointed out this week, the British media expressed shock and horror at “men with sticks running into crowds of protesters on horseback”. Funny that, as I seem to remember witnessing extremely similar scenes in London not so long ago.
The attempt to defeat the Egyptian revolution, however, has so far failed. The demonstrators remain steadfast in Tahrir Square, demanding the overthrowing of Hosni Mubarak. Mubarak seems extremely reluctant to do so; I guess that you get comfy in a job you’ve had for over three decades.
The demonstrations, by their sheer number, have clearly united huge swathes of Egyptian society. The issue is freedom, and as the case seems to be here, until the people have their freedom they refuse to be crushed.
However, that is not to say that it would be impossible to crush such an uprising. The Egyptian people have clearly reached a tipping point in their struggle, which could have one of two outcomes; victory, or massacre.
Now, more than ever, we must be vigilant, and we must wholeheartedly support their struggle. When the police arrest journalists and bloggers covering the demonstrations, we must demand their release. When Mubarak says he will leave after the next election, we must demand that he leaves now. When the British and American governments express “concerns”, we must remind them that they have kept him in power for thirty-one years. But above all, we must have faith in, and be inspired by the Egyptian people. After all, it is them, and only them, who can truly liberate their country.