Sunday, May 27, 2012

My thoughts on "The first free elections in Egypt"

When I was asked by many about my thoughts and expectations weeks before the elections that was my answer:

"The situation looks pretty complicated and unpredictable to me, just like to everyone else. Mousa and Shafeek (Mubarak's regime candidates known as feloul or remnant of the old regime) are likely to get votes from the anti revolutionaries and apolitical/politically unaware populations in Egypt.

Morsi's campaign is also getting more widespread and the Muslim Brotherhood as an organization has enough money to fund it.

Aboul Fotoh ( ex MB and a moderate islamist) Sabahy ( Nasirist/nationalist) and Khaled Ali ( Socialist) are considered to be the revolutionary candidates by many but the later (the youngest, most radical and revolutionary) doesn't have a strong campaign due to lack of financial support and publicity. 

A minority of activists and others will boycott the elections for many reasons and this is the category I belong to ."
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This is not an article or a blog post rather a collection of random thoughts and comments I wrote before on Facebook, twitter and other places on the web. 
I apologize for the repetition if you saw some of these stuff posted somewhere else.  

I decided I will not engage in political debates about the elections and I managed to some degree to stay away from this for the sake of my own sanity and also to avoid the bias and emotional reactions while watching the whole process from the outside.
I decided to boycott by not voting in the polls, or engaging in debates to promote some candidate, or joining any campaigns because I wanted to remain an objective observer. 

I have to mention that at some point I liked what Khaled Ali has said regarding many issues and I've always known Abul Fotoh as a good guy who spoke against the regime and the rigidity of the mindsets in the Muslim Brotherhood leadership yet that wasn't enough to convince me to change my position as regard to the whole process and the concept of voting. 

Boycotting was not the mainstream opinion or decision in Egypt and people who boycotted as a form of civil disobedience or because they don't believe in the process were not a majority among the 55% who didn't vote. 

The illusion of democracy that doesn't really exist 
I'm writing this just for the historical record and because people keep asking me who did I vote to or will do in the second round although I declared several months ago and recently that I'll boycott any elections supervised by the existing, intact and powerful military dictatorship regime we live underneath here in Egypt.

As long as the questions of the U.S military assistance and strong relations and the military industrial complex which controls 40% of the wealth in Egypt are not resolved I refuse to participate in anything supervised by the military council.

There are tons of intellectual/ political/ideological reasons I could demonstrate and write about but people are excited and saying anything against the mainstream cheerful spectrum is not gonna be heard anyway.

I wish I could help it and pretend everything will be fine soon enough like everyone else is doing but I can't do this. I don't have the privilege to do this with the fact people I know personally were murdered in my neighborhood and others are on hunger strike in military jails the very same month elections are taking place.

Not to mention all the other incidents in the past year and half, I'm only talking about May 2012 here. 

Free Elections? no kidding!

Free elections under the supervision of the military dictatorship?
The results are shocking to many although not for me and the situation seems pretty complex for people who are unfamiliar with the complexities of Egypt. 

The headlines of CNN and BBC speaking about the first free elections in 5,000 years and the statements by John Kerry and Jimmy Carter are not the whole story I'm afraid too.

If you put in consideration the following facts: 40% of Egyptians live under poverty line, half of the population is illiterate and the only source of information and education for the majority is state run TV controlled by the military and intelligence from the Mubarak regime you will understand why the votes went to Shafiq the ex-prime minister of Mubarak and ex-minister of aviation for 10 years. 

This is not an atmosphere where any real electoral process should take place.

People were mislead and manipulated by the junta and their media so, I don't blame them for making the choice they made.

While the whole world was naively watching Egyptians standing in queues to vote in their "first free elections in centuries" brought to you by the U.S packed junta, I was watching Canadians in Montreal and Americans in Chicago taking to the streets protesting against injustice, war and for the right to education that politicians are not granting them. 
Elections: Brought to you by the U.S packed military in Egypt
I simply don't want to fool myself, be a cast in a silly play, or talk about feeling proud to be Egyptian for voting. I never voted in any elections in my life and the same sick environment that prevented me hasn't changed yet.

On the issue of the Muslim Brotherhood

The Muslim Brotherhood came first in the Parliamentary elections and their candidate was shortlisted in the first round of this elections again because it is the oldest, most well organized and most well funded political entity in the country. 

I'm not an Islamophobic westerner so the reason why I don't like the politics of the Muslim brotherhood is not because they are radical islamists or because they will islamize the so-called liberal Egypt and all this nonsense newspapers talk about.

It's just because they don't keep a word and that they collaborated with SCAF all the time based on their political interest. It's because they're very opportunists and don't mind compromising on what's the right thing to do and what's wrong . 

I don't like them mainly because the U.S government and related economical complexes in the world would prefer dealing with them while pretending they are against Islamists in general in front of their people.

When the Senator John Kerry came to Egypt during the Abbaseya massacre he only met with one candidate and left. It was Morsi the MB candidate. Why? Ask the white house why is that.

It seems very clear to me even since before Mubarak resigned that The U.S is ok with the version of so-called political Islam the Muslim brotherhood follow because the MB 
is fine with the new-liberal economical agenda of the U.S in Egypt more than anyone else.

There are bad Islamists and good Islamists for the U.S.just like there are bad dictators and good dictators when it comes to supporting a regime and fighting another.

"Neoliberal economy and maintaining peace with Israel", in other words being Imperialism friendly and being flexible with the U.S role is the key success for the next president of Egypt whether he wears a military suit or has a beard.

This is what really matters at the end of the day so don't trouble yourself wondering what will happen if an MB president came to Egypt.

So, what's gonna happen next?

I don't know and I'm not trying to think about it because they never cease to surprise me. When this uprising happened I had many expectations about abstract aspirations and dreams that could come true such as "freedom, social equality, dignity, and some improvements in scientific research and education.. etc".

I was a 20 year old naive kid, back then I didn't know it's such a freaking complicated situation like that, and I didn't know that people are still calling for these very things in the rest of the developed world and are getting beaten up by cops in the streets.

After realizing the dimensions of the real crisis we are stuck with I only just want to be governed by a civilian entity and not a bunch of military generals packed by unjust foreign governments. 

I just want to be able to express my opinions without fearing arrest or military trials.

I want to take to the streets if I didn't like something knowing that I will not get shot by a soldier, run over by a military tank or attacked by a government paid thug. 

I no longer want to be worried about my forgotten friends who are in military jails for trivial charges. 

I'm afraid it is not gonna change over night through any elections of any kind though. That's why I boycotted. But I don't have an alternative, an answer or a solution. I'm still figuring that out myself. 

***************
There is no escape
And do not dream of a world full of happiness
For after every Caesar that dies
Is born another Caesar
And behind every rebel that dies
Is pointless sadness and wasted tears

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

this is more than great

Qur'an said...

I strongly agree with your point, we have seen many times that the state or country brought revolution in name of Islam in fact have some political agenda behind it. If they really bring it then world will see that Islam is not a religion of war or terror. Islam is religion of peace and brotherhood.