Monday, 28 March 2011

Meanwhile in Egypt

You remember the Egyptian Revolution? I have to ask, due to the goldfish memory syndrome which seems to affect the collective consciousness. A quick recap: the oppressive government of Hosni Mubarak was toppled by protestors, promising to usher in a new era of peace and liberalism. Not that that is likely, but you can't expect the MSM to keep up the interest, especially with the firework display up the coast in Libya going on. But in reality, the ouster of Mubarak is unlikely to bring positive change in itself, especially if his place is taken by one of his chief lieutenants.

Now, you can do your own research, but here's a starter, with the headline; 'Salifis, secularists clash in Alexandria' (Salafis meaning fundamentalists):

“This is the first time to witness physical clashes between protesters. We were here during the revolution. We were united. Now the Salafi movement wants to impose their way of thinking against us,” said Metwaly, referring to the conservative Islamist movement.

Salafi activists called for a parallel demonstration in front of the same mosque to oust Deputy Prime Minister Yehia al-Gamal because of his “secular” views.

The Salafi movement is similar to that of the Wahabi in Saudi Arabia in its adherence to a more extremist version of Islam.

Alexandria is a stronghold for the movement, which had been apolitical under Mubarak’s rule, but now is beginning to engage in the political scene.

Recently, Salafis have organized many public lectures discussing their view on politics, announcing earlier this week that they would form a political party and field candidates in the upcoming parliamentary elections.

Brief verbal and physical scuffles erupted between the Salafis and other demonstrators Friday.

I am of the general opinion that we should keep out of the affairs of other countries, and we should certainly not swallow the MSM version of events. They are not reliable. There are always hidden agendas. I keep to this line partly from a sense of powerlessness. No one's paying attention to my opinion. I'm not on the jury. I also have a measure of world-weary cynicism, which leads me to doubt whether positive change will result in either Egypt or Tunisa. I also believe it is up to the people of those countries to sort themselves out, and foreign intervention will not help this, even if it is for the best intentions, which it rarely is.

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