Free Markets, Free People


In Egypt, “Arab Spring” begins to turn into winter

For those of us actually somewhat tuned into the region, the dynamics of the power structure there, grounded in reality and, well, basic human nature, what is now happening in Egypt comes as no surprise:

Demonstrators burned cars and barricaded themselves with barbed wire inside a central Cairo square demanding the resignation of the military’s head after troops violently dispersed an overnight protest killing one and injuring 71.

Hundreds of soldiers beat protesters with clubs and fired into the air in the pre-dawn raid on Cairo’s central Tahrir Square in a sign of the rising tensions between Egypt’s ruling military and protesters.

Armed with sticks and other makeshift weapons, the protesters vowed not to leave until the defense minister, the titular head of state, has resigned.

Meet the new boss, same as the old boss.  And the boss is now starting to exert control.

The troops dragged an unknown number of protesters away, throwing them into police trucks, eyewitnesses said.

The military issued a statement afterward blaming "outlaws" for rioting and violating the country’s 2 a.m. to 5 a.m. curfew, and asserted that no one was harmed or arrested.

"The armed forces stress that they will not tolerate any acts of rioting or any act that harms the interest of the country and the people," it said.

Sounds pretty, oh I don’t know, 2010 in Egypt to me.  The point, of course, is the military, who has essentially been in control of Egypt for the past 60 years was willing to trade Hosni Mubarak to retain control over the government.  It took a neutral stance during the riots, threw Mubarak under the bus, put itself in charge of the “interim government” and now is exerting control.

“Arab spring” has sprung and it is now turning into the usual totalitarian winter but this time with elections!  Well, at least one.

~McQ

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11 Responses to In Egypt, “Arab Spring” begins to turn into winter

  • No, no. It’s the anti-tea-party. Demographics and stagnancy drive it. It’s overdue. You’re just threatened by those noble brown savages and their peaceful but different religion, which only has a tiny, tiny percentage of extremists. I decree it. Stop asking for links to support that assertion. I decree it, I tell you.

    You’re either ignorant or blindly partisan. Obama is awesome. He thinks like me.

    And I’m going to keep repeating these things in front of my class, in the faculty lounge, and on every political blog that won’t ban me, until we establish the prevailing narrative this particular multiple truth becomes established as the consensus. So there.

    We should oppose dictators, by standing on our principles. Saddam doesn’t count. It was not principled to stand up against that particular dictator – it was the worst foreign policy mistake in history. Only dictators that wise Europeans and UN bureaucrats don’t like should be strongly opposed. Otherwise it’s just imperialist American Republicans fighting wars for oil.

    Let’s see, have I recapitulated most of my major points about foreign policy over the last several years? I think so. Isn’t it wonderful that you have a foreign policy expert like me willing to take time on top of my sixty hour work week to explain these things to you dense, inbred, sterile righties? You’re so lucky I have an advanced deg [***SHORT CIRCUIT IN CREDENTIAL DESCRIPTION LOGIC TO BYPASS INFINITE LOOP BUG ON ACADEMIC DEGREES. COULD SOMEONE PLEASE DEBUG THE EMOTIONLESS ROBOTIC BLOVIATOR V6 CODE TO FIX THIS BUG THAT CAUSES INCESSANT REFERENCE TO A POINTLESS DEGREE?***]

  • Demonstrators burned cars and barricaded themselves with barbed wire inside a central Cairo square demanding the resignation of the military’s head after troops violently dispersed an overnight protest killing one and injuring 71.

    Who were the first group of protesters?  What did they want?  Were these idealistic youths, fired by the passionate, charismatic rhetoric of a certain jug-eared American and organized by Twitter to demand democracy, human rights, and unicorns, or were these islamist Muslim Brotherhood-types who are demanding a bigger piece of the government (i.e. all of it)?

    Either way, why is anybody surprised that the government in Egypt would react violently to any challenges to its authority?  As McQ says, welcome to reality and human nature.

  • Like the Boxers in China, the rebels in Egypt believed arcane magical moves, like tweeting, blogging, and status updates, could protect them from bullets and batons.

  • That’s exactly what I was concerned about. The Egyptian people want to choose freely their own direction and the new composition of their government but in such a difficult situation a number of unintended consequences may arise. Just think back to the situation in Iraq after the Gulf War in the 1990s when all power was put in the hands of the Iraqi people and this only helped Saddam Hussein regain his position of a cruel dictator.

  • Don’t forget about the deal the army struck with the Muslim Brotherhood.

    That’s probably the lost facebookers who are being routed from Tahrir Square.

    I’m waiting for Erb to stop by with the old “in order to make an omelet you have to break some eggs” line.

  • Yeah. That speech that Pres**ent Obama made in Cairo really helped …

    The fourth issue that I will address is democracy.  I know there has been controversy about the promotion of democracy in recent years, and much of this controversy is connected to the war in Iraq. So let me be clear: no system of government can or should be imposed upon one nation by any other.

    … the military heard it loud and clear.  The idealistic ‘useful idiots” only heard what they wanted to hear.

    • So let me be clear: no system of government can or should be imposed upon one nation by any other.”

      Unless of course it’s Libya.

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