Middle-east Arab News Opinion | Asharq Al-awsat

Egypt: A “half-cooked” revolution | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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If it is true that former US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice introduced and promoted the odd idea that is called “Creative Chaos”, then today we are observing a vengeful and a depressing political scene in Egypt, which we can only call “savage chaos.”

You can see youth demonstrating, throwing stones and flaming projectiles at the Egyptian Cabinet premises all night long, and then you can see them attacking the Egyptian Scientific Institute that contains invaluable literary, scientific and historical manuscripts. Surely these scenes are not being carried out by the same “ideal revolutionaries” who staged the 25 January revolution in Tahrir Square, and who set a perfect example of how to stage a youth-led revolution in a civilized manner!

This is also the case with the army soldiers who recently clashed violently with the people. They did not seem to be members of the same “ideal army” that protected the revolution and the revolutionaries, taking their side against the regime. Today, the army is far more violent and aggressive, as evidenced by the consecutive incidents and the dozens of casualties.

Egypt is now being pulled by different parties in different directions. Today, the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF) is the authority that now represents “political pharaohism” in its classic pyramidal structure, being the highest authority and calling the shots according to its own inherited customs. There are also the youths who alone paid the price and risked everything in order for the country to achieve a genuine revolution, whereby radical changes are made, rather than formalistic or symbolic changes merely represented in the overthrow of the president. In addition to this, there is also the sense of bitterness, betrayal and overwhelming sadness that has befallen these youths, when the results of the recent parliamentary elections resulted in a crushing defeat and a victory for religious parties that played no real role in the revolution. The youths believe the religious parties are reaping the revolution’s fruits “effortlessly”, something which they consider completely unfair.

Of course, there are religious political parties that do not mind watching the revolutionaries and the army confronting and crushing each other until they are both exhausted and fatigued. Then these parties can reap the rewards through the democratic ballot boxes, and the people’s desire to choose their representatives.

There are also countries and corporations that are stimulating the media and providing generous funding and support to certain parties, so that the situation remains in a state of “savage chaos”, and in order to further undermine the country.

Today, Egypt is the product of a ”half-cooked” revolution that is still “not done”, the former regime departed after its president was ousted, his party was dissolved and its symbols were arrested, merely to satisfy the people. Yet, the regime continued to maintain three of its vital and effective institutions: the military, the judicial system and the bureaucracy of the state. However, the former regime has quickly and surprisingly lost control of its wide and complex security apparatus, represented by the Ministry of Interior and the Central Security Forces, which are rapidly losing control for reasons yet to be discovered.

The savage chaos cannot continue forever; it will inevitably come to an end. For this to happen, there are specific prerequisites, namely who will be exhausted first: the army or the revolutionaries?

The talk today in Egypt revolves around the new classifications that are circulating; namely that the army is different to SCAF, and the youths are different to the revolutionaries. Yet the lines are fluid and ambiguous, and there are no clear borders or boundaries, thus the argument and definition of this issue remains subjective, something to be decided by each individual according to their own political preferences and tendencies.

The situation in Egypt today is like that of a tap [of water], it was turned off in an extremely skilful manner at the time of the parliamentary elections, yet when the protests took place and demonstrators attempted to deny Prime Minister Ganzouri access to his office, the tap was turned on once again, but now we are facing an uncontrollable torrent [of water], contrary to the situation prior to the parliamentary elections.

The battle today is for the last bastion of legitimacy: Stability or dignity? Each has a price, criteria, and a frame of reference. Until this is settled, Egypt will remain in a state of tension and disorder that will concern its people and those who care for it, but will definitely please its enemies. The revolution in Egypt is still “half-cooked”, so the question that must be asked here is: who will reap the rewards when the meal is ready?