Tag Archives: Jan25

Elections under play

17 Jun

Elections Under SCAF

When I would get ready to attend a protest before the revolution, my father would tell me, “nothing will ever change, Mubarak and his regime will stay the same forever, you are just wasting your energy and risking your life for nothing.” I would respond, “every little demonstration is a stepping stone in a long-term process called a revolution that will end this regime.” I still believe that every mobilization is an essential piece of the puzzle to topple the regime.  The revolution started and without one single group leading it, we managed to kick it off. What will take to achieve the revolution’s goals is another important question that we must start answering. We, revolutionaries, spent a year and half boiling our energy in reaction, in mobilizing to achieve the goals we set out on 25 January 201, yet only few things have been achieved. One sure gain is that Mubarak is out, put on trial, and now in Tora prison facing a life sentence. Even though nothing less than death to the dictator would have satisfied my anger, I can’t say that I am not happy to see him suffer his last days in a prison hospital.  As for the rest of the murderers who are free, their day shall come when they will suffer just like they tortured many Egyptians.

Elections are finally finishing up with major expected disappointments and setbacks on the political road to “democracy.” I never expected any elections under military rule to achieve any results satisfying the revolution. Elections engineered and constructed by SCAF (Supreme Council for Armed Forces) can never produce revolutionary or even reformist accomplishments, only will result outcomes that would suit counter-revolution and its allies. History tells us too soon of elections are always used to bury revolutions. We are not the first by any means. Whether Romania, Chile, Portugal, or Bolivia, we can draw parallel where military junta institutionalized militarization and strengthened counter-revolution. We can go back and assess where “we went wrong” or where we could have done better, but one thing is clear, elections were inevitable since the regime is still in place since 1952.  Sooner or later elections would have happened, conducted by the same old regime, benefiting the organized groups sufficient enough to run and win elections. In the case of Egypt; the Muslim Brotherhood and the National Democratic Party (the regime’s political arm).

The truth is the revolution has no machine, no organized group, no political party sufficient enough to adopt the revolution’s goals and capable of fighting the two most organized and biggest threatening machines to the revolution, the NDP & MB and SCAF. This is partially our fault yet partially out of our control for the many decades we were politically silenced under Mubarak. Many of the revolutionaries got politicized with the revolution or slightly prior to the revolution giving a major lead to the organized groups already existing under the repressive regime.  This explains the great success of Islamists in parliamentary elections and in the first round of presidential elections despite their decreasing popularity on Egyptian streets due to their reactionary and opportunistic agenda that clearly contradicts with revolutionary goals.

What is to be done? We organize. Aside from fighting for civil liberties, constitution that reflects revolution principles, and for ending military authority in daily life, we must build our alternative power, our machine that will and can topple this regime once and for all.  As a revolutionary socialist, I believe that the only group of society that has the power to topple this dictatorship is the workers.  We must organize the working class. For this revolution, it is a matter of success or defeat. When I am talking about the working class, I am not only referring to the traditional blue collar worker at a factory, but I am referencing anyone who sells his or her hours to earn a wage. This includes doctors, teachers, public and private employees, those who have the power to put the country at a halt like the last 3 days of the 18 days in the revolution. The workers were the final bullet in Mubarak’s chest, and are the only ones who can finish off SCAF.

Revolution Continues – ارفع كل رايات النصر

26 Jan

 

Revolution Continues - ارفع كل رايات النصر

 

On the first anniversary of the revolution, hundreds of thousands of Egyptians take to the streets echoing the same chants and demands from last year as if nothing have changed because nothing have changed. The only difference is that today was a record breaking numbers of protesters on the streets demanding end of military rule. More people took to the streets today all over Egypt than even Feb 11. The message was clear; we demand change, we demand the downfall of regime, we are continuing revolution until victory

 

2011: The Year of Heroes

31 Dec

It would be an understatement if one says 2011 was the year of change. The year of revolutions, the year of power of the people, the year of realizing yes we do have the power to overcome and triumph. What has not happened in 2011? Families battles, world disasters, Arab revolutions, global movements, personal struggles & successes, and of course love, all took place in 2011, and sometimes all at once. I saw death, I lived in Tahrir, I witnessed miracles, I went to places never thought were possible, I sprayed graffiti of Khaled Said on the gates of interior ministry, I lived. There are no words that can describe my pride and honor of having been part of the roots of the Egyptian revolution and still fighting for its victory. The days when we protested in tens in a cordon surrounded by thousands of riot police in front of the press syndicate or on the sidewalk somewhere, now seem now only like a small picture in an album book on an old shelf somewhere. From the start of 2011, Alexandria church bombing 20 minutes into the year, this small picture forever changed. People poured into the streets fighting sectarian strife and showing Egyptian unity. Soon enough along came the step-down of Ben Ali, ex-dictator of Tunisia, 10 days later we were in Tahrir demanding the removal of regime, and 18 days further Mubarak, the dictator who terrorized us for decades finally stepped down. The sweetest moment of victory ever short-lived, knowing what we experienced for months after and until now by the extension of Mubarak’s dictatorship under SCAF. So many people around me are disappointed and discouraged with how things are turning out since Mubarak stepped down, but being part of how things were before the revolution makes me so much more hopeful now. I always like to have the big-picture perspective on most events even in my personal life, and what I see now for Egypt is nothing less than greatness and unprecedented achievements in 2011 despite all the massacres and SCAF’s iron fist on Egypt.

Pictures speak louder than words so instead of telling you all the events that made the Egyptian revolutionaries my heroes of 2011. Below is the year of the revolution in pictures highlighting the most powerful images I chose for 2011. This is why there is hope, as long as we are breathing, we will fight for our freedom, social equality, and dignity. We die for freedom, but we live on hope & resistance. May 2012 be the year of freedom. Revolution until victory.

NO MORE FEAR! – Jan28
Nasr City مدينة نصر

NDP ON FIRE (for 3 days) – Jan29
Cairo Burns

The Bastard IS OUT – Feb11
Celebrations in Tahrir Square - February 11, 2011

WE RAIDED STATE SECURITY – March5
وثائق دمرها أمن الدولة

WE WON’T FORGET OUR MARTYRS – May6
Martyrs الشهداء

THE BLOOD OF ATTEF YEHYIA – May15
Egyptian Blood

KHALED SAID GRAFFITI ON MOI – Jun6
MOI Graffiti

BATTLE FOR MARTYRS – June28
DSC_4896

Police cracks down on martyrs' families in Tahrir الداخلية تضرب عائلات الشهداء بقنابل الغاز وخراطيش الرش والرصاص المطاطي

WE ARE BACK IN TAHRIR, WON’T GIVE UP! – July8 sit-in
Faces from Tahrir

ARMY RAID ON TAHRIR – Aug1: Ramadan 1st
Tahrir attack

FLAGMAN – Aug21
"Ahmed El-Shahat" The man who removed the Israeli flag from Israel Embassy in Egypt - #FlagMan

ONE DAY REV – Sept9

Independent Judiciary March

Ultras Ahly  التراس الاهلي

rain of tear gas bombs at protesters at Nahdet Masr Square | وابل من قنابل الغاز على المتظاهرين في ميدان نهضة مصر

MASPERO MASSACRE – Oct9

IMG_6308

مسيرة للتنديد بمذبحة ماسبيرو

NOVEMBER UPRISING – Nov19

Tear Gas قنابل الغاز

DSC_4857

OCCUPY CABINET – Dec16

Army Soldier with a dirty gesture

Protest like Egyptians

Army Officer points a gun at a fallen protester

Army Raids in Tahrir

Revolutionary in Qasr el Einy

The two walls in Tahrir

There so much more ..but one video says it all. SCAF MUST BE EXECUTED IN 2012!!!

With all the painful images above, I am not depressed nor worried. I have seen the strength, courage, and bravery of the Egyptian revolutionaries. We never stop fighting, we never give up, we will continue until victory and I have no doubt that we will EXECUTE SCAF.

Police Corporals Take Tahrir to MOI

28 Oct


Police corporals
have taken Tahrir to their work place not only demanding the unfulfilled 200% raise, but most importantly calling for the restructure of the ministry out of the corruption & the management belonging to the ousted & imprisoned ex-minister Habib El Adly. The videos show some low-rank officers during the sit-in in front of MOI speaking about their demands, against military trials, and against Habib El Adly, who recently undergone eye surgery at the Police Hospital even though he is a prisoner. My brief talk with them gave me the final conclusion that low-rank police officers are the bottom of the police business pyramid, so they are exploited the most and now they are speaking, organizing, and acting as workers not as policemen who harass us everyday. Our solidarity is needed because any striking worker is the backbone of this revolution.

The Families of Martyrs Speak – اهالي الشهداء يطالبون بالقصاص

5 Jul

The families of martyrs started a sit-in in front of Maspero on Friday June 24th demanding the prosecution of police officers engaged in the killing of their sons and daughters during the 18 days of the up-rise since Jan25. The sit-in lasted 5 days. After the Balloon Theater clashes with police, the families decided to end the sit-in empty handed with no media attention whatsoever in the 5 days of the sit-in. I went to the sit-in everyday, and spoke with many of the families there, who come from different cities all over Cairo, and Egypt including Sinai & upper Egypt. The families of martyrs have been under a lot of pressure from police (directly & indirectly) to change their testimonies in return of money, but every single person I spoke with said, “not with all of the world’s money, would I sell my son’s blood.” These families have lost their sons & daughters and all they demand is justice to be served; for every killer to be prosecuted transparently and sufficiently.

Families of Martyrs

What surprised me the most is that without this, what many called “insignificant” sit-in, the now on-going Tahrir sit-in would not have happened this way and the central security forces confrontation in Tahrir the night of June28th would not have happened, which is exactly what’s bringing back the revolution’s momentum. There were many divisions within opposition on what to focus on in this period. Many are focused on writing the constitution first, others favoring parliamentary elections first, and my favorite group, who is focusing on “rebuilding Egypt” by painting the pavement 60 times over. The truth is, there will be no meaningful popular constitution, no real parliament that represents the revolution, and definitely no success in the revolution, IF we, “shabab 25,” don’t focus and win those battles that will make or break this revolution like this one. The families of martyrs battle, in my opinion, is one of many under-supported causes that not only have almost no disagreement on, but most importantly, it directly links all of the demands of the revolution that haven’t been met yet.

The families of martyrs are demanding the cleansing of the judicial branch through the efficient & transparent prosecution of murderers, the cleansing of the state police through holding the corrupted accountable for murder and torture, and the cleansing of media, which is not only ignoring their demands, but also tarnishing the reputation of protesters and jan25 martyrs. We are going back to Tahrir and all squares in Egypt with full force on July 8th, I urge you to join for the revolution, for the martyrs, for Egypt!

Sit-In Until Victory
Power of the people.

June28: The Second Coming of Rage!

29 Jun

Around 6:00 pm I was at the families of martyrs sit-in at Maspero, I found the place somewhat unusually emapty, when I asked, I learned that a group of them together with supporters had left in a march to the honorary celebration of the martyrs at El Balon Theater in Agoza. I wasn’t able to figure out for sure who organized this “celebration” nor why have the families decided to go and leave the sit-in. Soon enough, a group came back from Agoza telling the story and showing me the footage of police attacking the supporters from Maspero after the families & supporters were denied entry into the theater.

The families from Maspero along with supporters went to get into the theater, and they were denied entry by security saying that they are not the families of martyrs, so four supporters jumped the fence, and that’s when the clashes started. Immediately, the police showed up and started firing tear gas and attacking supporters & families of martyrs from Maspero with electric shocks shown in the video above.

I took this footage and went to Aljazeera Arabic, uploaded it, and was promised that they would report it, and left. As I was passing through Tahrir, I saw a group of familiar Tahrir activists saying that they are going to the interior of ministry to protest against the police attacks in Agoza. There were 2 trucks with plain clothed people heading there as well. I wanted to pass first by the CairoTweetUp first then head to MOI, I showed the tweeps the video and left to MOI with @3effat & @Sarrahsworld.

When we got to MOI, clashes had already occurred between protesters and CSF officers with an exchange of rocks throwing. I saw there @norashalaby & @Tahrekshalaby along with other familiar faces. As things were dying down, all of the sudden, I saw the CSF officers marching with sticks in the air towards Tahrir on Mohamed Mahmoud St. The protesters followed them not understanding whom are they running after. I kept asking what is going on? People who were there before me, told me that “they are running after thugs who came and threw rocks at the officers in 2 trucks.” Hmmmm these must have been the same trucks I saw in Tahrir earlier, who are these people? unknown.

We, protesters, ran towards Tahrir, and clashes between us and them, pigs, never stopped since until now (noon June29th). Many were injured, including Noor Ayman @NoorNoor1, who was shot with khartosh in the head< but he is fine, just couple of stitches. One reported dead, Amr Osman. The most disgusting part was the cursing and the words that the CSF pigs were yelling at us while shooting us with tear gas and rock. They were saying, “we will kill you! you deserve death ya awsaakh!” I threw rocks for the first time from the front of the line. I was not afraid. I was ready to die because freedom is not without blood. I got soficated with tear gas like many others including @alaa @Lobna @salmasaid . I left Tahrir to upload the footage that I have and the pictures that I took before my phone, camera, laptop, and flip all batteries went dead. You will find my videos from the night here soon.

Watch my interview with the Guardian this morning about the clashes:

Gigi Ibrahim on the clashes in Cairo from matthew weaver on Vimeo.

There is a call to stay in Tahrir, few thousands are there already, and more will join tomorrow. Alexandria, Suez, and Port Said also have mass demonstrations. Power of the people. Revolution until victory!!!

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Families of Martyrs Demand Retribution

27 Jun

Families of martyrs and protesters wait for hours for a trial session that takes about 3 minutes with a verdict of yet another postponement to July 25th. The protesters outside the Tagamooa El Khames court gather and chant aggressively against El Adly calling for “death to the dog Habib El Adly,” the ex-interior minister accused of killings of Jan25 martyrs and being responsible for systematic torture and abuse under the Mubarak regime. The anger towards any police figure was apparent when protesters hurled stones at all the police vans coming out of court and armored police cars carrying the 7 accused in the case. The circus continues with no justice serviced, while families of martyrs continue their sit-in at Maspero demanding 1) The efficient and transparent prosecution of all police involved in killings of martyrs 2) The adequate compensation to all families and those who were injured, 3) For Habib El Adly & Mubarak to be held responsible and tried fast without tampering with the law, and 4) For the policemen who are accused to be put on trial while being off-duty.

To Mubarak, with Love..Fuck You!

27 Jun

Take this “Sons of Mubarak” …Fuck you very much!

iRevolution CNN Documentary

20 Jun

Video of the portion on Egypt of the iRevolution CNN documentary featuring Mona Seif @monasosh, Ramy Raoof @Ramyraoof, and I

Visualizing the Revolution

15 Jun

This video has been one of the most moving and inspiring visuals that I have played over and over, probably every night, prior to the January 25th revolution. Ever since I came across Nasser Nouri‘s powerful images especially from Mahalla, I became totally inspired. The Mahalla up-rise on April 6th 2008 not only inspired youth movements like April 6, but most importantly it visualized the revolution; gave us hope that it is possible. Three years later and this video could’ve been in Tahrir. Thank you Mahalla, thank you brave Egyptian workers, and thank you Nasser Nouri for making many believe that revolution is possible.

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