Saturday, February 12, 2011

11022011 : Chronicles of The real departure Friday

It started like in any Friday in our revolution , we were angry and ready to take the streets not only at Tahrir square but to the Presidential palace and the ERTU building.
Last Thursday we were disappointed and frustrated with the statements of Mubarak and Omar Soliman that followed the army’s first communiqué that made the people go wild literally in Egypt and outside it. Then came the army’s second communiqué and people were more disappointed and frustrated , the army seemed to be standing with Omar Soliman and Mubarak.
The Stated own TV announced later that there was an important announcement coming from the Egyptian presidency and there were leaks speaking about a presidential council taking over but we were not sure anymore , last Thursday we had  a lot of expectations based on leaks and none of them as appeared came true. There were a lot of rumors and news that the army took control for real and Mubarak left to Sharm El-Sheikh . We were sure that the old man of the East left to Sharm but we were not sure about the other rumors , it seems that Omar Soliman in control despite his terrible shaken look last Thursday. People were extremely angry and Al Tahrir square was on the verge of explosion. The protesters managed to encircle both the ERTU and Presidential palace at Heliopolis.
Al Tahrir yesterday from outer space
David Muir's twitter feed 
And the moment that the many Egyptians will remember for years came , Omar Soliman saying in a statement made of  21 words at 6.03 PM Cairo local time:  President Mubarak has stepped down and delegated the power to the army council to rule the country. Mubarak become our real first former President. “Actually from a historical point of view he is the second former president after late President Mohamed Naguib”
Oddly enough as far as I could remember both Mubarak and Soliman addressed the public 3 times each.
Words can’t describe what and how the Egyptians felt across the country except that there were millions celebrating the end of Mubarak’s rule in the streets from all classes , all ages and all backgrounds with Egyptian flags. It was the first time to see Egyptians like that in a real national occasion than other than football , it was even greater as we are celebrating our freedom , our victory over a bloody dictatorship.
Here are couple of videos showing the reaction of the public after knowing the step down decision.
Protesters’ reaction after Mubarak’s resignation at the Orooba Presidential palace
The moment Mubarak resigned from presidency from Tahrir “ Al Ahram Daily “
Reaction to Mubarak’s resignation in Cairo from Independent
I was in the street when the army aired its 3rd Communiqué to the public  was aired at 8:30 PM. I heard its last part of it in the radio and knew its summary from my aunt on the phone. I wanted to see that 3rd Communiqué so much after knowing that general Ahmed El-Fangery made a military salute to the souls of martyrs who gave their lives for the sake of freedom.
The third army communiqué
The statement included respect to former president Mubarak accepting the responsibility of heading the country in this critical time. 
The salute to the martyrs was a great gesture that made the army even more popular among the Egyptian people and also among Al Tahrir protesters despite all the fears from the military  council.
A Salute to the martyrs
The official media has changed its tune now even more dramatically , the Egyptian TV has abandoned Mubarak and is taking the protesters side. The TV channels began to speak , for the first time since very long time we find Heikal speaking on air on Egyptian channel. 
The TV presenters began to adjust their places , like for instance Amr Adib who suddenly cried on air on ON TV yesterday telling us how he suffered in the time of Mubarak. I want to believe him but I can't forget that in Ramadan 2010 he claimed that Mubarak protected him !!
It is strange that Ben Ali left Tunisia on Friday too , it is strange that general Shazly was buried after a respectable and popular funeral in Cairo and Farwell march in Ismailia on the same day, it is strange that we find King Farouk’s birthday on the same day, it is strange that we find that it is the same day where Nelson Mandela was released from his long time prison.

13 comments:

  1. Love your blog! You go girl!

    Worried though - can't seem to get a clear answer about Omar Sulieman's role now.
    I heard the cabinet (NDP) is staying for the moment. Does that mean Omar Sulieman is staying as Vice Pres? Not so good at all and very worrying.... does anyone really know?

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  2. For Egypt, Are Elections the Way Forward?

    The people of Egypt are standing at an historic crossroad. But to hear other people tell it, Egyptians are travelling down the highway to democracy. They’ve been stalled for decades but now their engines are revving and they are all but on their way to western style democracy. First stop: free and fair elections.

    To all those who died and sacrificed, it would be a disservice to commence this trip without fully examining the destination and any and all alternatives. Required reading before you embark on this journey is Animal Farm by George Orwell. Moral: If new people are put into any version of the same system, no matter how reformed, you will eventually end up with the same results. The problems may be to a lesser degree, more benign, but you will not have the freedom for which people died.

    As an American who dabbled in local politics, consider this my postcard from Destination: Democracy. I don’t wish you were here. Sure, I have a vote; I have a voice, but it is not heard. If you have a voice which you can’t use, are you in a worse position than one who can use their voice, unheard? What is the difference?

    "Although Bahrain has a parliamentary system, many Shias feel elections have only served to co-opt them into the political system and did not improve their access to government jobs and services." (http://english.aljazeera.net/news/middleeast/2011/02/201121251854857192.html - 2-12-11)

    So, apparently, no difference. Free elections only encourage those who would, to achieve power, do and say anything, those with no scruples, the lowest of our low. Anyone who says they want to run for a political office should be immediately disqualified from politics. The process of running for office does not appeal to anyone who is, at heart, a good honest person. Isn’t that who we need now, good honest people?

    There should never be a political class, a group of people who make their living as politicians. The political class is insulated, protected from the very people whom they are supposed to represent. How then, can politicians represent people?

    Is there another way, a different road to take? First, decide what your destination is. For the voices of the people to be heard. For the will of the people to be enacted. To be free; to rule ourselves.

    Well, it’s clear that free democratic elections won’t get you there. I suggest the direct route. Fill all political offices by lottery. It works for jury duty. I haven’t heard of that system being corrupt, beyond people trying to get undeserved exemptions. It works for military duty except, again, people trying to get exempted.

    The people of Egypt could vote on the framework of the system. Who is included in the pool? How often can people from the same family be eligible for duty? Should eligibility for national positions rotate geographically?

    During a term officers should receive a stipend equal to %200 of their salary from the previous year. They should continue to live in their house amongst their neighbors. It should be seen as a simple matter of changing jobs . Then after they have served a term or two they will go back to their old job.

    Enough! of political intrigue and manipulation. Enough! of corporate interests before those of the people. Enough! of rule by the rich for the rich. Politicians are a scourge and they do not represent people. We the people should start to begin to represent and rule ourselves. In this age of crowdsourcing we know that we can create, we can collaborate. Yes, WE can. Not ‘we can get him elected to change things’; WE can make change.

    If you don’t take this opportunity to now try something new you will regret it. For the highway to democracy is actually a ring road. Eventually you will end up where you started and you will see your grandchildren in Tahrir Square. But, they will go home unsuccessful, unheard. Because, they will live in a democracy and they will have a vote.

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  3. I think the "stepping down" of Mubarak was decided on Thursday, and his last speech was his only hope as he tried to repeat what he said before and lead to the cracks happened in the street between those who want him to stay and those want him to leave immediately.

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  4. As a Brit living in America, I'd say that the problem here is the structure of voting. Everything is first-past-the-post and because local, state and federal politics feed off each other, it's more or less impossible to have more than two political parties. Politics here is driven by money - people spend tens of millions of dollars on campaigns - and that's another high bar for newcomers.

    I'm sure Egypt has plenty of political science graduates and there are plenty of other examples to study (eg. Germany). Animal Farm is a good cautionary tale though, as is 1984 for the western world.

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  5. @Shamsa, Sulieman is no longer vice puppet as the puppet resigned his position to the supreme army council so Sulieman has no standing in presidency office whatsoever because it no longer exists and the constitution became obsolete. There were no official news if Suleiman left his post as Chief of intelligence, legally he can still hold both positions as vice puppet and chief of intelligence but if he did leave his former job, I can safely say his political career is over.

    By the way, I have heard rumours that he is a member of the army council and could have a say in decision making, if any of you have any suspicions about that then rest assured he is not because only heads of army divisions make up that council and absolutely no place for former military man like him. So Sulieman could be still Torture chief but if he resigned that before becoming VP then he now belongs in the dustbin of history with his old friend.

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  6. I think Mubarak has fled to Xırdalan, Azerbaijan where he has his own monument.

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  7. @Anonymous 2/12/2011 10:02:00 PM

    cool story bro

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  8. Z, could you please post the "bayan" (communique) issued by the revolutionaries in Tahrir Square after Mubarak's resignation?

    It was read out on Al Jazeera, but I haven't been able to get a written copy, and that frightens me.

    That communique clearly lists the demands that must be met to implement the goals of the revolution. If they are being ignored, that's a very bad sign.

    Also, those stupid and insulting commercials all over the tv telling us how wonderful & professional the police are, and that we need to trust them are a sign that the same ugly mentality is in power.

    It's a mentality that considers the Egyptian people to be stupid children who can be fooled with words and slick commercials instead of concrete changes.

    Until all the cold-blooded killers, the torturers, the rapists, the thieves and the drug dealers in the police are caught & arrested & punished, please don't ask us to "trust" them!!!!!

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  9. WARNING: (US) "...the White House and the State Department were already discussing setting aside new funds to bolster the rise of secular political parties." http://www.nytimes.com/2011/02/12/world/middleeast/12diplomacy.html

    Any party that accepts any money from the Americans or other foreign country should be exposed and banned.

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  10. you egyptians gladdened the hearts of people all over the world with your bravery including here in england ! i wept when you won ! good luck for the future !

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  11. Davd George, U.S.A.2/13/2011 01:08:00 PM

    It is now Sunday and I read that the military is trying to evict the people from the Liberation Square. This cannot happen. The people must evict the military from the square. It is the seat of legitimacy of a civilian government. Be dispersed and you are the subjects of the military government. And it will be "business as usual" again and you will regret it.

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  12. I said it before and will say it again, you are currently under a soft military rule and will reamain so for years to come and you will never see it. Welcome to the 21st century, welcome to the new softer face of the state.

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