Archiv der Kategorie 'Religion'

„How to put an end to the Revolution…“

English version below

Vor zwei Wochen veröffentlichte der ägyptische Schriftsteller Alaa Al-Aswany diese satirischen Text über die aktuelle politische Situation – eine der besten Analysen was gerade geschieht die in letzter Zeit veröffentlicht wurde. Lest… wir sind, vermutlich, zwischen Punkt 4 und 5…

Wie man in sechs Schritten eine Revolution niederschlägt
Alaa Al-Aswany

Lieber General, wenn die Revolution dich überrascht hat – bloß keine Panik. Kein Grund zu erschrecken angesichts Millionen wütender Demonstranten. Beruhig dich. Atme einmal tief durch und reiß dich zusammen. Erinner‘ dich, dass Revolutionen Ausnahme sind, seltene Momente in denen die Menschen mutig handeln und bereit sind, ihr Leben zu geben für ihre Freiheit und ihre Würde. Revolutionen sind die Ausnahme, die Regel ist dass die Menschen Ungerechtigkeit akzeptieren, sei es aus Furcht vor Unterdrückung oder für kleine Gewinne. Der Beweis dafür ist, dass es nur wenige Revolutionen in der Geschichte der Menschheit gab. Die Umstände haben dich nun in den Nachwehen einer Revolution an die Spitze der Macht gebracht, also mach dir keine Gedanken über das Brüllen der wütenden Massen in den Straßen. Die dort unten sind wie Tiere, stark und wild aber irrational. Du bist der begabte Dompteur, dem es mit wohlbedachtem Knallen der Peitsche gelingen wird, sie zu kontrollieren und zurück in ihre Käfige zu bringen. Dafür solltest du in sechs Schritten vorgehen:

Erstens: Feier die Revolution und schimpfe auf den abgesägten Diktator. Du musst erklären, dass du die abgeschlossene Ära ganz und gar verurteilst. Natürlich hast du in Wirklichkeit noch immer Sympathien für den ehemaligen Diktator der jahrzentelang dein Freund und Kollege war, dennoch hast in die Öffentlichkeit zu treten und lauthals zu schreien: „Lang lebe die Revolution!“ Die Menschen werden dir spontan glauben. Niemand wird sich daran erinnern dass 40 Jahre lang an der Seite des alten Diktators standest ohne irgendetwas gegen die Verbrechen, die er begangen hat, zu sagen. Die Menschen werden dir glauben weil sie sich wünschen, dass du auf Seiten der Revolution stehst, und Menschen sind sehr anfällig dafür, dass zu glauben, was sie sich wünschen. Verfluch den Diktator allerdings nicht zu sehr, für den Fall, dass du doch Misstrauen erregst. Verfluch ihn nur einmal, zweimal, ja am besten zweimal, das wichtigste ist dass du unablässig die Revolution hochleben lässt. Die Menschen müssen aufwachen und ins Bett gehen zum Lobgesang der Revolution, erstens weil sie dann glauben die Revolution hätte gewonnen (auch wenn sie in Wirklichkeit keines ihrer Ziele erreicht hat), und zweitens weil so alles was in diesem Land danach passiert einzig und allein mit der Revolution in Verbindung gebracht wird.


Islamists take the square

The camp on Tahrir enters its 22nd day – and the square is taken, not by the military nor by thugs or the police as so many feared since the clashes of Abbasiya last week. Friday July 29 millions of islamists took the square and all the surrounding streets. The three big islamist organisations – Muslimbrotherhood, Salafis and Al-Gamaa Al-Islamiya – showed their power and brought people from all over the country by bus to the square. No chance for the 28 secular groups that had called beside the islamists and hoped for a „friday of unity“ of the different groups that have split in may after fighting side by side against the Mubarak regime during the revolution. In the early morning there were still fight about poster calling for an islamic state – at the time of the midday prayer the islamists had taken over. Chants for an islamic state, the islamic law, against „atheist“ press all over the square, „million greetings to Tantawi“ and shouting in favor of the SCAF.

At 3pm the secular groups declared in a press conference they would leave the square to protest against the take-over of the islamists, they had not respected the agreements made before. The sit-in is still going on – though the people in the small camp in the middle of the square felt more and more scared surrounded by millions of islamists that had criticized the sit-in for weeks…

Zum Weiterlesen auf deutsch: Artikel in der taz

News from SCAF and friends – May 27 II

Countdown. Today, May 27 another million-man-march is planned, 21 political parties, the youth organizations and unorganized activists call to go back to Tahrir Square that day to „save the revolution“.

The not supporters
The more important parties and the Muslim Brotherhood do not support the call this time, the argue that going on with protests will destroy the economy and the country and that the protest will divide the people and the army. In fact, organization like the radical-islamistic Muslimbrothers benefit from the actual situation where a lot of people feel insecure and call for strict rules and a strong government, they will be one of the groups who profits most from early elections like the ones planned for september – unless the many small parties still to be founded, they are well organized and have enough money, so they are expected to gain a lot of seats. The groups calling for a „second revolution“ for this friday want te elections to be postponed and the election law to be changed, at the moment Egyptians abroad are not allowed to vote, Egyptians with a foreign parent either. Muslim Brotherhood announced to organize protests against the protests in Alexandria. Also some salafi groups told the Newspaper Al-Masr Al-Youm they consider the protesters atheist and infidel. A human rights network accused the Muslimbrotherhood of agitating against the young protesters. The youth organiziation of the Muslim Brothers indeed announced to take part in the march – against the decision of their leaders.

The supporters
Under the supportes of the call are the 6 April Youth movement, the Coalition of Revolutionary Youth, Al-Masry Al-Hurr, ElBaradei Campaign, the Egyptian movement for change, the Maspero Copts movement, the Muslim Brotherhood Youth wing and presidential candidate Bothaina Kamel. A lot of young protesters not belonging to any group or party are expected to take part – on a facebook page with an anonymous group’s call 30 000 ppl confirmed their participation. In an article on Ahram Online more information about supporting groups and the protest planned in Suez and Alexandria.

The army
In his statement n° 58, released on its facebook page, the Surpreme Council of Armed Forces (SCAF), repeats (and repeats and repeats) that it is part of the people, never would use force against the amazing youth of this wunderful country and never ever shoot at protesters. The rare part is point 3: the army announces that on friday it will not be there, that means it will neither protect or secure the protests nor the streets nor any infrastructure. Because, as the army argues, if we are around, people will tell again that we are shooting against them. Aha(r).
So the SCAF warns the youth of the revolution that infiltring elements could make problems on friday and split army and people (even more). Beside, it trusts fully in the youth of the revolution that they can protect themselves and also infrastructure, streets, shops and everything else.
So…when are they going to open the prisons again?
Many protesters, of course, regard the statement 58 as an announcement that this time not the army but baltagiyyas will attac them.

a second statement of the army regarding may 27:
„Egyptian citizens should respect the anti-protest law and ask for permission before going to a protest, giving the reason and place of the protest before they head out, says Mamdouh Shaheen, assistant to the Minister of Defence today.“ (Ahram online, may 26)

Fights about a the flag

Fights along the Israelian border in Syria and Libanon, many people shot, more injured, Israelian tanks entering Libanon and Syria (watch AlJazeera or any other news channel to get the information about things going on there) – a bloody Nakba-day as the day of the foundation of Israel is called in the countries around. And bloody also in Cairo: There, a few thousand mostly young people gathered in the afternoon in front of the israelian embassy. News reports say that they wanted to break in and wanted to burn the embassy or take down the flag, other say ppl wanted to enter because the riot-police had brought three protesters there they had arrested before.

Around 9 pm the police and armee started shooting teargas and live ammunition, later the army went in with tanks. Some protesters throw stones, according to the Health ministry over 350 are injured, many by bullets, others suffered problems due to the high amount of teargas. There were reports about two dead protesters last night, one shot in the head, one killed by a CSF-car. This morning, news agency AP spoke about 3 persons killed. Al-Jazeera reports one protester, Atef Yehya, was shot in the head and remained in critical condition, while another, Ali Khalaf, was shot in the abdomen and believed to be stable.

The army arrested about 200 people during the fights and the night, one woman, saying she was the only female, got free. According to her, also a 8-year-old boy was arrested. One of the arrested is the blogger Tarek Shalaby.

There is lot of material about the happenings in front of the israelien embassy online:
Blogposts from Zenobia and 3arabawy (there also a lot of photos and videos) an interesting video about the happenings, fotos and videos also found on the facebook page of Gigi Ibrahim. Tarek Shalawy broadcasted live till he was arrested.

Maspiro (and the media)

- New clashes between muslims and christians – sectarian violence – two people die in fights between muslims and copts at maspiro –

The media, the national and the international one is full of that shit!!! But from all information that I can get at the moment from friends and through Twitter and from what I have seen there the last days, it seems pretty clear that what happened at Maspiro yesterday were no sectarian clashes. Points to be mentioned:

1. The protest in front of the TV-building was started by copts after the clashes in Imbaba with 15 deads and more than 200 injured. Later also muslims and a lot of young protesters joined. The sit-in was definitely not against muslims, religion didn‘t even play an important role during the protest. It was to a big part against the army and the police. People were shouting: „Muslims and Christians one hand“, „Down with Tantawi“, „The people want Tantawi to go“, called for the inmediate release of all prisoners and a civil government. The protest was well organized and peaceful, people were controlled when entering the area, blankets were given out at night, many young protesters joining said to me: „The sit-in lookes a lot like the one on Tahrir“, „They are shouting the same slogans as during the revolution.“

2. The coptic leaders did not support the protest, they called the christians to leave. Today, Sunday 15th, the coptic pope Shnouda III called the protesters to end their strike inmediately: „You will be the loosers if you go on protesting there“ he said.

3. The protesters at Maspiro were attacked by about 500 thugs in the late afternoon. This was confirmed by all eyewitnesses, none of them had any information that there were radical muslims involved, all agreed that they were professional thugs. They attacked with guns and Molotov-Coctails from the 6th-of-Octuber bridge first, then came down and had some nasty fights with the protesters. According to Reuters two people did, Egyptian health ministry said 58 got injured. Official sources talk about 50 people being arrested, 10 cars burned. Also interesting: Protesters who caught one of the thugs found a NPD-ID with him.

4. The police did not hinder the thugs attacking the crowd. It is also important to know that there were fights between the Maspiro-protesters and the Central-Security-Police who was there with several hundred persons all along the last days. The police from time to time pushed into the protest, graped a single person who was being arrested, protested ran there, shouting till the police went back.

5. Around 11pm the army arrived. Tanks on the Octuber-Bridge, the scene could be seen live on OnTV. Army fired tear-gas and smoke bombs. Shoutings could be heared in whole downtown, it is not clear if the were shouting in the air or also on protesters. On TV, there could be seen who protesters run away in panik when soldiers are firing, you also see clearly the blue lights of the shots.

6. No information so far about the arrested. Are they protesters or thugs or both? Will they be trialed by a military court as so many protesters arrested before?

Vor der Attacke: Protest am Nilufer in Maspiro, Foto: Salmasaid/Flickr

From all this…

this lookes a lot like the now well-known strategie of the army to get rid of unliked protests: First to let thugs in to do the dirty work and then come after some hours to „rescue“ or „protect“ people – and disperse the protest and arrest not only the thugs (if they are arrested at all) but also the protesters. Seen exactly like this the 9th of march when thugs and the army cleaned Tahrir Square from the protester’s camp. And it’s not a casuality that activists who where in Maspiro call it Camel battle II: Also in the famous Camel battle the 2 of february professional thugs attacked protesters, injured and killed many of them.

From Cairo to Gaza (and back)

Deutsche Version unten / German below

Several thousand activists prepared the last days to travel to Gaza on Friday or Saturday for the 15th of may, the so-called Nakba-day (catastrophe), anniversary of the foundation of the state of Israel. Palestinian activists had called for a „third intifada“, protesters from different arab countries, especially Egypt and Tunisia, wanted to join to support them.

Friday several political groups called for a „march of unity“ on Tahrir Square after the violent clashes between copts and radical muslims in Imbaba last week. But there wasn‘t much seen of this in Tahrir that Friday, instead, palestinian flags and chants against Israel and for the freedom for Palestine everywhere.

Saturday morning, at 9 am, busses were planned to leave Tahrir Square to bring protesters to Gaza. Several thousand already gathering two days earlier on Sinai. But the Egyptian army closed the borders. A few ones passed to Gaza, most peoples who tried to get there Friday and Saturday came back ’cause they couldn‘t enter.

Around 100 gathered at the Israelian embassy in Cairo in the afternoon. The embassy is situated in the highest floor of a half-rotten building near Cairo University Bridge, only a small flag on the top of the building can be seen. Young men and women, many of them just back from Rafah, shouted against Israel and the army who was standing between them and the embassy. „We want to burn the embassy“, „we want to support our brothers in gaza but the army is standing between us“, „Allahu akbar“. A self-drawn israelian flag is burned. Around 7pm it is getting more quiet, people tired from shouting and the long day on the road…

Einige Tausend Aktivisten aus Ägypten haben sich während der letzten Tage vorbereitet, Samstag in Richtung Gaza zu reisen, für den sogenannten Nakba-Tag (Katastrophentag) am 15. Mai, dem Gründungstag des Staates Israel. Palästinensische Aktivisten hatten für diesen Tag schon vor Wochen zu einer „dritten Intifada“ aufgerufen, Protestierenden aus verschiedenen arabischen Ländern, viele aus Tunesien und Ägypten, wollten hinreisen um die Palästinenser bei ihrem Aufstand zu unterstützen.

Für Freitag hatten verschiedene politische Gruppen zu einer „Demonstration der Einheit“ auf den Tahrir-Platz gerufen, damit sollte der Zusammenhalt zwischen Christien und Muslimen gezeigt werden nach den gewaltsamen Zusammenstößen zwischen Kopten und radikalen Muslimen in Imbaba letzte Woche. Doch von der Demonstration der Einheit war am Freitag nicht viel zu sehen – statt dessen quoll der Platz über von palästinensischen Flaggen (deutlich mehr als ägyptische!), überall erschallen Rufe gegen Israel und für ein freies Palästina. Das Publikum ist ein deutlich anderes als sonst an den Freitagen auf dem Platz: deutlich mehr Männer, älter, subjektiv deutlich aggressiver und weniger tolerant als bei den Tahrir-Demonstrationen der letzten Zeit.

Samstag morgen sollten zahlreiche Busse morgens um 9 Uhr vom Tahrir-Platz aus Richtung Gaza fahren, in die Grenzstadt Rafah. Einige Tausend Protestierende hatten sich nach Agenturangaben schon zwei Tage zuvor auf der Sinai-Halbinsel versammelt. Die ägyptische Armee rief die Protestierenden jedoch auf, von der Fahrt nach Gaza abzulassen, untersagte den Bussen die Abfahrt und schloss die Grenze. Von denen die auf anderem Weg nach Rafah gefahren waren, kamen am Samstag viele, meist ziemlich frustiert, zurück.

Etwas hundert Demonstrant_innen versammelten sich vor der israelischen Botschaft am Nachmittag. Die Botschaft ist im obersten Stockwerk eines brüchigen Gebäude nach der Cairo-University-Bridge gelegen, einzig eine Flagge weit oben ist davon zu sehen. Junge Männer und Frauen, viele gerade aus Rafah zurück, rufen laut Slogans gegen Israel und die Armee, die mit zwei gepanzerten Fahrzeugen und einer größeren Anzahl von Soldaten zwischen ihnen und der Botschaft steht. „Wir wollen die Botschaft anzünden“, „wir wollen unseren Brüder in Palästina helfen, aber die Armee steht zwischen uns“, „Gott ist groß“. Eine selbst gemalte israelische Flagge wird verbrannt. Später wird es ruhiger, die Leute sind heise, müde vom Schreien und der weiten Fahrt…