Distrust of the Revolution in Egypt

22 Jan

Wael Ghonim posted an anecdote about riding in a taxi cab and hearing the driver talking about all the foreign governments and people who were paid by America who triggered the revolution in Egypt. He tells the driver who he is (he played a central role in some events in 2011) and then the driver goes through the whole gamut of accusations and claims made by the pro-Mubarak and yellow media — that Obama is going to weigh in on the presidency in Egypt, but then in the end, he apologizes to Ghonim and says he’ll defend him when he hears him slandered in the future. This is a really important problem now – people who are unable to believe that Egyptians enacted their own revolution although they saw it with their own eyes. The degree of venom planted by the old regime uttered night after night on the news is part of an ongoing discourse about foreign intervention, and the ultimate purpose of regime change. Are people comforted by these thoughts that otherwise, everything would have gone on just as it always did until last year? The similar claims made in Libya and Syria have an equally divisive effect, which will play out in their own particular patterns.

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2 Responses to “Distrust of the Revolution in Egypt”

  1. Jonathan Shannon January 22, 2012 at 9:40 pm #

    I think it poses a real problem, if not an immediate threat to th near and mdium term course of events. I am last daily surprised by Syrian who make the same claims – and not only members of previously “protected” minorities but also Ba’athists, artists, merchants, old-guard Communists, and others. The self-proclaimed leaders of the resistance have not been unified enough to present a unifie disavowal of these claims. And no doubt there are foreign influences at all levels. The worst of it is that they cannot seem to accept that they were and remain capable of throwing off oppressive regimes. The Arab peoples are powerful, resourceful, creative, and potentially very strong. They were told too long and too often that they are not so that some have accept this.

    • sherifazuhur January 22, 2012 at 10:27 pm #

      What shocks me a bit about Egypt (and it may prove true in Syria) is that the conspiracy theories have been embraced by those who actually weren’t benefitting from the government. This includes workers, various employees, young and older people and I think this involves fear of the unknown, and the sense that while awful, the old normalcy was dependable and people knew how to take advantage of what they had. The other disturbing trend is the liberals hatred of the “religious” — and statements that if what happened in Egypt would happen in Syria, then it’s all dim. And finally, I find that some people are very suspicious of me! Why do I want to know, etc.

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