amrbassiouny

Just another WordPress.com site

دليل استراتيجى للمظاهرات العنيفة — أساسيات الدفاع

كثير من الناس هم إما جدد  أو عديمي الخبرة نسبيا في الاحتجاجات العنيفة ، و نظرا لما يحدث في هذه الأيام ، قد ترغب في الاطلاع عن قرب ورؤية ما يحدث أو ربما حتى تنضم للاشتباكات بنفسك. قبل القيام بذلك، فإنه من الضروري أن تعرف كيف تفعل ذلك بشكل صحيح. إذا كنت تتعامل مع الموقف  باستخفاف ، قد ينتهي بك المطاف بجروح خطيرة، أو بعجز أو حتى ميتا لا سمح الله.

 في هذا المساهمة سوف اشرح بالتفصيل  الاستعدادات وكيفية حماية نفسك من الهجمات التي تشنّها قوات الأمن المركزي والقوات العسكرية، ويستخدم كل منهما أسلحة و استراتيجيات مختلفة

  إعدادات ما قبل المظاهرة

 قبل الدخول في أي احتجاج أو معركة تحتاج إلى الأشياء التالية :

- الضروريات

  – وشاح (على غرار الفلسطينيين ) — لحماية العنق، وتغطية وجهك إذا لزم الأمر.

  – الهاتف مشحون بالكامل — توقع الأسوأ

  – الهوية — في حال كنت مصاب أو ميت، يمكن للناس التعرف عليك

  – الجينز / السراويل الثقيلة — لحماية ساقيك / و لاموأخزة المناطق الحساسة

  – سترة سميكة /كنزة — لحماية الجزء العلوي من جسمك

  – شيء لتغطية رأسك مثل قميص أو قبعة صغيرة — للوقاية من العصي والحجارة أو الرصاص المطاطي

  – الأحذية الرياضية — للركض

  – قناع غاز للحماية من الآثار المميتة للغاز المسيل للدموع / العصبية.نوصي باستخدام القناع الكامل ! أو إضافة نظارات السباحة لحماية العينين من الاحجار والغاز والرصاص المطاطي

  – المناديل الصحية

  – قفاز واحد — لامساك و رمي قنابل الغاز على الشرطة مرة أخرى دون حرق يدك

  – زجاجة ماء صغيرة

- أشياء إضافية

  – رذاذ الطلاء — لرش الزجاج الأمامي للشرطة / سيارات عسكرية أو حتى في مواجهة أحد المهاجمين

  – كوكاكولا / بيبسي / محلول قلوي آخر — لتحييد آثار حرق الغاز المسيل للدموع

 

قبل خوض المعركة

 وضع خطة الهروب — ابحث عن طرق للخروج بحيث يكون من السهل سلوكها حيث يمكنك الركض بحرية من دون أن تعلق.

وضع خطة خطواتك — ابحث حولك عن مناطق حيث يمكنك أن تأخذ الغطاء او تختبئ، وحيث تتلقى الناس الضربات بحيث تتجنب الانتهاء في نفس المكان

العثور على اتجاه الرياح ، وهذا سيكون مفيدا للغاية عندما تسقط قنابل الغاز المسيل للدموع بالقرب منك

ضع قناع الغاز، وامّن الوشاح والملابس و اتجه للأمام

تكتيكات الخصم

 الأسلحة التي سوف تواجهها

 قوات الأمن المركزي تستخدم بشكل أساسي  الهراوات الطويلة / العصي والغاز المسيل للدموع / العصبية والبنادق (سواء الحية والرصاص المطاطي). كما أنهم عادة ما يرمون الحجارة

العسكر بشكل أساسي يستخدمون الهراوات طويلة / العصي والهراوات الكهربائية وبنادق هجومية.

 

 تكتيكات الغاز المسيل للدموع

ليس من الصعب تجنب الغاز المسيل للدموع ما دام هناك بعض الرياح أو نسمات الهواء. أما إذا كانت الرياح راكدة،  حاول البقاء بعيدا عن الأزقة الضيقة وان تتواجد في المناطق المفتوحة.

 عند إطلاق العبوة في اتجاهك، قف! ، لا تتحرك . حاول أن تتابعها وان تعرف اين ستحط، تحرك فقط إذا كانت سوف تصل إليك. بمجرد أن تصل القنبلة الأرض و يبدأ الغاز بالخروج, أنظر في أي اتجاه تخرج الغازات.

 في هذه اللحظة معظم الناس سيحاولون الهرب لتفادي الغاز، ولكن كل ما عليك القيام به هو السير عكس اتجاه الريح، أو إذا كنت بحاجة إلى الهرب ، بسرعة اركض حول الغاز قبل أن ينتشر لتغطية خروجك الخاص

 عند الركض، حاول أن تكتم تنفسك و تغمض عينيك لتجنب استنشاق الغاز عن طريق الصدفة. إذا كنت مضطرا للركض عبر الغاز ، حاول أن تقوم بذلك سريعا و لا تتنفس نهائيا أثناء ذلك. في حال علقت في مكان معين دون أن تستطيع الخروج منه، لا تخفض نفسك إلى أسفل، و حاول أن تحافظ على رأسك عاليا حيث أن الغاز أثقل من الهواء. و حاول التنفس ببطء اكثر هدوء ممكن ، و تحرك ببطء  لتجنب زيادة معدل التنفس ، و حاول أن لا تذعر و حاول أن تشدد قناع الغاز بقدر ما تستطيع باستخدام  يدك.

 أهم شيء هنا هو عدم الركض حتى تشاهد العبوة تسقط، و أن تعرف اتجاه الغاز مع الرياح. هذا هو الشيء الأساسي لكي لا تعلق في غمامة من الغاز.

 إذا قررت أن تبعد العبوة, يمكنك ركلها أو رميها. قبل الركل ، انظر الاتجاه اللذي تسير فيه الرياح, حاول ان تأتي العبوة من نفس اتجاه الريح وتركلها و تعيدها إلى قوات الأمن المركزي. إذا كنت رميها، يجب أن تفعل الشيء نفسه مع الريح ولكن احذر الوقوف و العبوة في يدك. سوف تحتاج إلى أن تركض وان ترمي في نفس الوقت، لأن توقفك في مكانك الغاز يعني انتشار الغاز حولك وعلى جسدك. و حتى لو رميتها بشكل سريع جدا، تحتاج إلى الابتعاد عن المكان بشكل سريع جدا بعد ذلك

تكتيكات ضرب النار

عندما تكون في معركة يتم فيها إطلاق النار.

أولا: يجب عليك التأكد من أن هناك شخص ما أو شيئ ما بينك وبين من يطلق النار. لو كنت تمشي، امشي وراء رجل آخر ولو كنت واقف خذ ساتر سواء شخص أو شيئ

لو رأيت الشخص الذي أمامك سقط من الضرب عليه بالنار، عليك أن تجد ساترا بسرعة.

عندما تأتي الفرصة للجري، اجري كما في حالة الزج زاج، لأنها تصعب تحديد مرمي القناص.

الرصاصات المطاطية لن تثقب / تخترق جلدك إذ لم تكن قريب جدا من مصوب النار (القناص) ويمكن إيقاف تأثيرها من خلال الماسكات أو الملابس إذ كنت بعيدا عن الهدف.

الطلقات الحية أسوا من الطلقات المطاطي لو كانت على مستوى قريب.

 تكتيكات هجوم البندقية

ليس هناك الكثير لتفعله سوا الإحتام (خذ ساترا)، الإختباء، الجري بشكل متقطع (الزج زاج)… المهم إنك لا تكون في مرمي البندقية أو مطلق النار. وأيضا الإختباء وراء شخص آخر يفيد.

 تكتيكات رمي الحجر

الوقوف وراء شخص ما في هذه الحالة لن يفيد وأيضا الوقوف لتجنب حجرة معينة لن يفيد لإن االأحجار كثيرة ولن تستطيع تفاديها جميعا. هناك إختياران، أولا: إنك تتراجع بمسافة جيدة بحيث أن الإحجار لا تتصوب عايك. ثانيا: إنك تجد ساتر.

ودائما غطي رأسك وذراعيك بشبئ وابعد نظرك عن الأحجار حتى لا تؤذي عينيك.

بعض النتظاهرين من الممكن أن يصابوا من أحجار تم رميها من متظاهرين آخرين نتيجة عدم حساب مسافة الرمي. لذلك عندما ترى حجر يٌرمي أولا تأكد من أن المتظاهريت يرمون من بعيد وامنعهم إذ كانوا يرمون على متظاهرين أخرين، وحاول أن تبقى بعيدا عن الصف الأول للضرب.

 تكتيكات العٌصي الكهربية والهراوات

هناك طريقتان لفعل هذا. الطريقة الآمنة والطريقة الخطرة. ابعد عن الطريق بمسافة جيدة وارمي أحجار أو مولوتوف بحيث تكون بمأمن وتكون بعيد. بالنسبة للعٌصي الكهربائية ابعد عن الطريق بقدر المستطاع وإن لم تستطع فالعصا الكهربائية ارحم من الهراوة.

 —–

أخيرا ، حاول أن تبقى دائما آمنا. اتخذ الاحتياطات اللازمة بشكل جيد، لا تذعر، وتفكير دائما بسرعة قبل الانتقال. إذا لم تذعر، وتوقفت لحظة لتقييم الوضع يمكنك تصفية ذهنك، والتفكير بشكل جيد وسريع و بالتالي أن تحقق الأمان و السلامة أسرع من البقية.

عرض كيفية استخدام الاستراتيجيات فى الامر الواقع

  صورت هذا الفيديو الليلة الماضية في شارع الفلكى خلال معركة مع قوات الأمن المركزي، عندما كانوا يطلقون علينا غاز مسيلة الدموع  وغاز أعصاب وكذلك عن رصاص مطاطي وطلقات حية.

 كما ترون، كنت واقفا بجوار مدخل مبنى على اليمين وكنت بأخذ ساتر من إطلاق النار من حين لآخر.

   الساعة ٢:٢٤ تقريباً تم إطلاق قنبلتان المسيلة للدموع ورائي، التي من شأنها عرقلة نقطة دخولي الوحيدة . وبما إن

 الهواء كان سيبعده عني بعد الانتذار فكان من الاسلم عدم الهروب والبقاء قريباً عن القتال. ثم ركضت بسرعة نحو العلبة لأبعد عن إطلاق النار بقدر الإمكان، وفي ذات الوقت بقيت قبلهما مباشرةً  لتفادي الغاز .وبقيت على هذا الوضع الجيد حتى شعرت ان التقدم عاد أمنا مرة اخره وتستطيع ان ترى في الفيديو كيف من استخدم ستراتيجية سيئة ذهبوا مباشرة في الغاز.

 إذا كنت تبحث عن كثب في هذا الفيديو وغيرها، وسوف نرى كيف أن هذه النصائحيمكن أن تكون مفيدة جدا.

لا تتردد في طرح أي أسئلة أو إبداء أي تعليقات

لمتابعة عمرو بسيونى على  تويتر: @amrbassiouny

Violent Protest Tactical Guide – Defence Essentials

Many people are either new or relatively inexperienced to violent protests, and considering what is happening these days, you might want to get close to the action and see what is happening or maybe even join the fighting yourself.  Before doing so, it’s essential to know how to do it right.  If you take it lightly, you could end up seriously injured, incapacitated or even dead.

In this post I will go through how to prepare and protect yourself from attacks by the Central Security Forces (CSF) and the Military forces, as each uses different weapons and strategies.

Pre-Protest Preparation

Before entering a protest or battle you need to have the following things:

  • Essentials
    • Scarf (palestinian-style) – To protect your neck and to coveryour face if needed.
    • Fully charged phone – Expect the worst
    • ID – In case you are injured or dead, people can identify you
    • Jeans/heavy pants – Protection for your legs/crotch
    • A thick jacket/top – Protection for your upper body
    • Something to cover your head such as a hooded shirt or beanie – Protection from rocks, batons or rubber bullets
    • Running shoes – You will run
    • Gas mask -Protection from deadly effects of tear/nerve gass.  Full mask recommended or add swimming goggles to protect the eyes from gas, rocks and rubber bullets
    • Tissues
    • 1 glove – To hold and throw gas canisters back at police without burning your hand
    • Small water bottle
  • Additional items
    • Spray paint – To spray the windshield of police/military cars or even in the face of any attackers
    • Coke/pepsi/other alkaline solution  – To neutralize burning effects of tear gas
  • What not to do
    • Don’t wear contact lenses, make-up, moisturizers or vegetable/mineral oil-based cream, it will bind the CS on skin and can boost up the skin irritation.

Before you enter the fight

  1. Plan your escape – Look for easy exit routes where you can run freely without getting stuck.
  2. Plan your steps – Look around for areas where you can take cover and where people are getting hit to avoid ending up in the same place
  3. Find the direction of the wind, this will be extremely useful when tear gas lands near you
  4. Put your gas mask on, secure your scarf and clothes and go ahead

Opponent Tactics

Weapons You Will Face

CSF mainly use long batons/sticks, tear/nerve gas and shotguns (both live and rubber bullets).  They also commonly throw rocks.

Military mainly use long batons/sticks, electric batons and assault rifles.

Tear Gas Tactics

Tear gas is not hard to avoid as long as there is a breeze or some wind.  If the wind is stale, try to stay away from tight alleyways and be in open areas.

When a canister is shot in your direction, STOP, do not run.  Look up, watch where it will land, and only move if it will hit you.  Once it goes down and the gas starts coming out, look at which direction it is going.

By this point most people in the crowd will be running away like crazy to avoid the gas, but many of them will get stuck in it.  All you need to do is walk the direction opposite of the wind, or if you need to escape, quickly sprint around the gas before it spreads to cover your exit.

When you run, try to hold your breath and tighten your eyes to avoid inhaling any gas by accident.  If you are forced to run through the gas, then do it extremely fast and DO NOT BREATH.  In case of being stuck without anywhere to go, do not go down, keep your head high since the gas is heavier than air.  Breath as slowly and calmly as possible and move as slowly as possible to avoid increasing your breathing rate, and do not panic.  Also, tighten your gas mask as much as you can with your hand.

The most important thing here is to not start running until you see where the canister lands and where the wind is taking the gas.  This is the key to not getting stuck in a cloud.

If you decide you want to move the canister, then you can either kick or throw it.  Before you kick, look at where the wind is going, come from the same direction as the wind and then kick it back to the CSF.  If you want to hold it, do the same thing with the wind but NEVER stand still with the canister in your hand.  You will need to both sprint and throw at the same time, since if you stop in your place the gas will be all over you.  Even if you throw it very quickly, you need to move away from your spot very fast right after.

Shotgun tactics

Whenever you are in a fight that includes guns being shot, first thing to do is ALWAYS make sure that there is another person or object between you and the shooters.  If you are walking, walk behind another person, and if standing, try to take cover.  If you see the person infront of you going down, then you need to find cover fast.  I have personally been in at least two battles where this rule saved my life.  It’s a dirty trick, but it works.

When it comes to running away, always run in zig-zags.  It makes it much harder to aim at you.

Rubber bullets will normally not puncture your skin if you are not very close, though will sting and can be stopped by your goggles/mask or clothes if you are far enough.  Live shotgun shells will be much worse and especially at close range.

Assault Rifle Tactics

I have been in several battles with the military where they were freely shooting their AK-47s at us.  There isn’t much you can do really…duck, take cover, hide, run in zig-zags…just get out of their line of sight.  Also, having another person between you and the bullet helps a lot as experience has taught me.

Stone-throwing tactics

Standing behind another person won’t necessarily help you in this case, and standing to look where the stone will land is also quite useless since there will be too many and you won’t see them well.  This leaves two options, either you sprint back and stay a safe distance away from the stones, or you find cover.  There’s not much you can do here.

Always cover your head with your arm and look away from the stones so they don’t land in your eye.

It is also common for protesters to hit and injure other protesters with their own stones by accident.  Not everybody can aim well or they may overestimate their throwing distance.  So whenever there is stone throwing, first check if people are throwing from far behind and stop them if they are hittin gothers, and try to stay away from the front line because that’s where a lot of the stones land from behind.

Batons, Sticks and Electric Baton Tactics

There’s two ways to do this…the safe way, and the dangerous way.  Either you act like Rambo and grab somebody and beat the crap out of him, or you get out of the way.  I would suggest the latter, get out of the way, create distance, then throw rocks/molotov cocktails from further away where you can be safe.  Rambo normally doesn’t make it out in one piece.

When it comes to electric batons though, just get out of the way.  You’re much more likely to be incapacitated immediately by the electricity than you would by a stick.

————————————

Finally, always stay safe.  Take your precautions well, never panick, always think quick before you move.  If you don’t panick and take a moment to assess the situation so you can clear your mind, think fast and well and get to safety faster than everybody else.

Real Video Example/Demonstration

I took this video last night in Falaki street during a battle with CSF.  They were shooting heavy tear/nerve gas at us and rubber bullets/shotgun shells.

As you can see, I was standing with a building entrance to my right where I would regularly take cover from gunfire.

Around 2:24 two tear gas canisters are shot behind me, which would block my only entrance.  Since the air was going to blow it away from me, I would be safest not running away and staying closer to the fight.  Then I quickly ran towards the canister to be as far away as possible from the gunfire, while staying right before it to avoid the gas actually being blown my way.  This kept me in a good position until I felt it was safe to move foward again.  You can see how all the other people who used bad strategy panicked and ran straight into the gas.

Whenever there were shots, everybody ducks down and takes cover.  I also always made sure there was another person standing infront of me whenever i went out in the open.  Around 2:53, the man standing infront of me was shot by a rubber bullet (that would have hit me if he wasn’t there) and you can see him holding his side in pain around 3:01 walking away.  This saved me from taking the bullet myself instead.

If you look closely in this and in other videos, you will see how these tips can be very helpful.

Feel free to ask any questions or make any comments/additions for me to add.

Good luck to you all!

For more of the above, follow @amrbassiouny on Twitter.

ARABIC VERSION: http://wp.me/p1ejui-22

http://abassiouny.wordpress.com/2011/11/23/%d8%af%d9%84%d9%8a%d9%84-%d8%a7%d8%b3%d8%aa%d8%b1%d8%a7%d8%aa%d9%8a%d8%ac%d9%89-%d9%84%d9%84%d9%85%d8%b8%d8%a7%d9%87%d8%b1%d8%a7%d8%aa-%d8%a7%d9%84%d8%b9%d9%86%d9%8a%d9%81%d8%a9-%d8%a3%d8%b3%d8%a7/

A Call for Action

In my last blog entry I talked about how we, the revolutionaries, had been pushed in an extremely weak position due to our bad tactics.  I finally recommended that we lay low for a few months, and wait for the Supreme Council for the Armed Forces (SCAF) to make a fatal mistake, then jump on it as if there were no tomorrow and finish the fight when we are in a stronger position.

Unfortunately, protesters continued protesting well into the first week or two of Ramadan only to be crushed by SCAF, almost bringing our revolution to a complete halt.  The only reason, in my humble opinion, that our struggle did not die completely was due to the smart tactics used by the No Military Trials Campaign.  They were that pulse that kept the revolution alive within each one of us, as well as in the media and on the streets.   They were that lifeline that kept us going until we could get out of the coma we put ourselves in after banging our head against the wall too many times.

"No Military Trials" has been doing this for the past few months

Once our protesting and occupying of Tahrir Square ended by the start of Ramadan, the spotlight then went to SCAF, and it stayed there.  Then came the peaceful Coptic march to Maspiro on the 8th of October, and the spotlight was still on SCAF, because nobody expects a group of unhappy Coptic Christians to stop the Wheel of Production again.  Then SCAF fucked up, big time.  I was expecting them to royally bring an end to their joy ride soon simply because SCAF is run by a group of old farts that lack a great deal of intelligence and also happen to wear JIL tighty whities under their cheap uniforms.

Tantawi's Underwear

Tantawi even did some modelling for JIL when he was 17

And this is it, this is what I was waiting for to come back out of the hole I dug myself into and get back into the fight.  Around 9pm on the 9th of October all of a sudden my feelings changed and I got off my couch and went to Maspiro, knowing it was our time again.    I went as a photographer, not a protester as I usually would, because I knew that pictures and videos would be my most valuable weapons in the coming days and months.  I felt great sadness as I saw what was happening, but I also felt the glimmer of hope I was waiting for, I was witnessing the moment SCAF would shoot itself in the foot.

Tantawi actually saw this same exact photo, but fortunately never read the warning below it

How can we know that SCAF is now in its weakest position? For starters, several people who once stood by their side suddenly said “I have nothing to do with this” and walked off  (or at least said they would).  That includes their puppet Prime Minister Essam Sharaf and his deputy and Finance Minister Hazem El Biblawy (who couldn’t find the pair of Cahones he grew a few hours after the first time he said it, and ended up changing his mind the next day).  Same goes for several people working in state TV, they cleaned their hands of the dirty job their stations did that night.

Another point is that they declared Egyptian blogger Maikel Nabil’s case a mistrial, a significant step back for them, almost an admission of guilt.   Moreover, the fact that they had to hold a proper press conference to explain themselves instead of just updating their facebook status as usual means that they are on the defensive.  They know they are in a weak position, and they are backing down and will eventually bend over if you push them hard enough.

Dear Revolutionaries,

NOW is our time.  Carpe Diem.  Your time has come.  You are now in the strongest position you will be in for a long, long time.  SCAF is now weak and bleeding, and the a large portion of the country has turned against them (most importantly, the media).  Raise your voices, share your videos, start your FB pages, speak to people all over again.  Take them down while you can.  Volunteer to help with initiatives that are starting, such as the conference being organized for tomorrow to counter the blatant and disgusting lies told by SCAF in its press conference earlier today, and maybe even start one of your own wherever you live.

Most importantly, learn from your mistakes.  Do not protest if you will be over-run by thugs and give SCAF  a good excuse to attack you.  Work through politics and media, it is your best bet now.  Once you have your front lines solid like rock, then you go to the streets in force, and your demands will be met.

This is a call for action. Raise your flags men and women, our time has come.  If we don’t beat them now, we never will.  And most importantly, if we don’t somehow find a leader and a spokesperson, we will surely fail.

Follow me on Twitter for more of where the above came from @amrbassiouny

Remedies for a Bad Strategy

These days, whenever I’m asked the usual question of “we eh akhbar il thawra?” (What’s happening with the revolution?). I tend to respond with: Not doing so well.  The Supreme Council of Armed Forces (SCAF), in my opinion, has succeeded in controlling the minds of the population and are having their way with things.

Reforms are for show, not for change, and while some are pressing on, the majority of people just want to get by with life and get it over with.

Above all that, almost everybody — except those stranded in the square– are hating the revolutionaries at the moment.  It’s just not going in the right direction, in fact, things seem to be taking a nasty turn and it’s only getting worse.

The harsh truth: Everybody hates us

No matter where I go or who I speak to, almost all are against what the revolutionaries are doing today, not only in Tahrir but in all of Egypt’s squares.

I even went around four different cities last weekend hanging out with taxi drivers, mechanics, lorry drivers, gas station employees, military officers, Bedouins, business owners and just about anybody else I could sit with.  My Conclusion? They all hate our guts and think we’re fucking everything up.

Even the young military officers and soldiers I spoke with have now turned against us and are on the SCAF’s line of thought/brainwashing.

Why is this significant? Because what we need to understand is that we are at war and the Egyptian people are our foot soldiers (metaphorically of course).

What we have now is, in military terms, is a mutiny within our ranks. It reached the point that the residents of Abasseya put themselves in harm’s way to go out on the streets and fight against the protesters coming from Tahrir to stop them from reaching SCAF’s headquarters.  The residents were even on standby the weekend after, ready with all their weapons, just in case the protesters thought of going back again.

Now of course, I’m very aware that some say that the residents were pressured / paid / brainwashed / scared into doing what they did. Some even go further and say most attackers were mere “thugs” and not residents. But whether we like it or not, that’s the long and short of it: Residents DID attack, and they would again if they heard of another march going to SCAF’s headquarters.

If we use the war/military analogy, what just happened is that you sent two divisions to fight a battle with the enemy, then one of your divisions sided with the enemy and trapped your loyal troops and attacked them.  Our enemy has had a great success in spoiling the image of activists and the struggle in Tahrir with just about everything they could throw at us.  Now, Tahrir is associated with Islamists, “Filool,” (remnants of the old regime), foreign agents, baltageya (thugs), unemployed people with nothing better to do, etc.

The objective is to fight a battle and win it, but as it stands, your own troops are against you. If you go to the battle field now you’ll be wiped out (as you have many times before).

The moral of this story and all these analogies is the following: Without the moral support of the people (the silent majority, if you will), we will all fail.

A simple description of SCAF’s main tactics

The skeleton of SCAF’s tactics is clear:

1.       Allow protesting

2.       Infiltrate with baltageya/amn dawla/il 3afreet il azra2

3.       Have agents attack/provoke troops

4.       Attack protesters and end it.

5.       Use media to highlight the fact that the protesters include baltageya and that there are hidden motives to the protest aimed to create chaos and spread disharmony

6.       Another protest happens against violence or to release those arrested

7.       Protest is infiltrated

8.       Etc.

This is the cycle that feeds itself, with the aim of creating more protests with the exception that each time it happens the protest (along with the protesters) becomes weaker rather than stronger.

The more we continue to protest, the more ammo we give SCAF, i.e. it working against us.  It has become an old method and they have become experts at fighting it — our cause has become the most vulnerable in a protest.

Alright, so what do we do then?

Let’s say you’re doing a crappy job grilling steaks for your friends, to the point that all your friends hate your guts.  Then one person keeps trying to act like a pro and keeps begging to take over and flip them himself, you get sick of it and say “alright, go ahead then! You do it!” Then he does a crappy job too and everybody gets annoyed at that person instead.

That’s what we need to do.

We need to take the MASSIVE (negative) spotlight that is on us right now and put it on SCAF instead. Give them no excuse for fucking up, because when they do (and they will), that’s our opportunity to strike again.

Don’t be in the picture, be on the sidelines. Instead of grilling the steak, sit back and mess up the beef’s marinade (tatbeela). Play dirty.

What must happen is a complete pull-back from protests for at least 1-2 months, and for a well-planned covert media effort to take place to taint the image of SCAF with the people.  This must also be done hand-in-hand with smart political lobbying on all levels.

Once we manage to create general discontent towards SCAF for being the ones who can’t get the wheel of production (that we all love) moving again, we can reclaim our troops and head back to war. This time is when we will need them most, because the period between the parliamentary and presidential elections is by far THE most important time for us to be able to get out there and exert pressure.

Those sitting in in Tahrir are now the first and biggest excuse for SCAF to get their way with things.  Take that excuse away from them and they have lost their most precious weapon, then we turn around and fight them differently.

Change tactics, be unpredictable, strike where the enemy can not see.

For more of the above, follow me on twitter: @AmrBassiouny

If I was the leader of the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces

At times I think to myself…why don’t the SCAF just do ____________ and things would be so much easier and better for everybody? Because, it seems so simple and clear and obvious, that any normal human being with basic brain capacity & clear of bad intentions would be able to see and do these things without outside help.  Though for some reason beyond my capacity to understand, it just never happens.

I’m an extremely naive person by nature of course, and I am 100% convinced that Sir Tantawi & Co. are extremely decent, respectful people who have always been completely in love with our ideas of freedom, liberty, accountability and justice when we started this revolution.  They loved it so much that they decided to take the torch from our hands and keep running with it! Though, it seems they just aren’t doing the right thing 99.9% of the time, of course just because they have too much on their hands and they aren’t experienced and ya 3eeni 3’alaba bas mish 3arfeen yi3milo eh walla eh wil kalam il hayif dah kollo…no bad intentions at all tab3an! (sarcasm meters should be going through the roof now)

I would like to give the SCAF a few tips on how to increase their popularity and avoid Tahrir turning into an “iskat il mosheer” playing field, so here’s the first 15 things I would do if I was the leader of the SCAF:

  1. I would immediately put myself up for voluntary investigation with the DA, and publish all my bank account and asset records for the past 30 years.  I would also set up a 24 hour live webcam feed straight on my office from 5 different angles (which of course can be paused in case of sensitive meetings).  This would be to set an example that even I am not above the law, and that I am a decent man with nothing to fear.  My finances, assets and daily routine are so clean that I don’t mind everybody seeing them and scrutinizing for themselves.  Why would I not do this if I wasn’t 100% clean, eh?
  2. I would invite every single person on the council to volunteer to be put under investigation also, and publish their cash and assets as I did with myself, though they would not be forced to do so.  Either way, whoever doesn’t follow suit will end up looking really bad, so it’s a lose-lose situation for any corrupt people within my ranks.  That would be an awesome way to clean up the military leadership.  Because you’re all awesomely decent and non-corrupt people, don’t you want that too?! I know you do you #Jan25 Lovers!
  3. I would share power by creating a presidential council.  The role of the army is to protect the people, not to play politics.  The army has too many guns to play politics, its involvement in such affairs is extremely dangerous and I should be very aware of that.
  4. I would have soldiers protecting every rally or protest from potential thugs, and give orders to violently interfere and break up any violence that may arise due to thugs that may be planted within any protest.  Arrests will be carried out ONLY to the offending parties, or those who bring weapons along.  I’m sure that’s who the SCAF are referring to in their latest Bayan 56, right?
  5. I wouldn’t shoot at protesters with live fire, no matter what.  Also, I won’t attack them without being provoked, and if/when I am provoked, I won’t attack everybody indiscriminately, but target the few who provoked me.
  6. I would put the commander of whatever unit was in charge of protecting the Imbaba church under investigation, pending trial for being far too slow to respond and allowing the church to burn, letting the country slip into a state of sectarian violence.  I would also make sure it doesn’t happen again, because it’s the second time and that’s just horrible of me.  I’m sure SCAF feel horribly guilty and sad for not trying harder to stop this from happening twice since they took power.
  7. I’d order investigations for ALL and ANY torture or abuse allegations pointed at military soldiers, with swift televised military trials to ensure no other military member will ever torture a fellow Egyptian when he is supposed to be protecting him/her and his/her revolution.
  8. I would allow free speech, and set laws where the media has absolutely no direction, and can say anything about anybody as long as it does not cause sectarian divisions or hate.
  9. I would create a real referendum for a real constitutional change based on a constitution of a country which is a role-model for freedom and prosperity (like Sweden or Switzerland), rather than making one up based on sectarian or religious demands of any specific group in the country.
  10. I would put Hosni Mubarak, & all those who are under investigation today for serious political corruption in prison, rather than in Sharm El Sheikh.  Also, I won’t let them out of prison unless it’s 100% clear that nothing happened.  If any of them are sick, they can go to prison hospital, just like the rest of the criminals that are there.  Why would I ever treat a mass murderer better than all the drug dealers and thieves? Moreover, all related trials would be televised or at least broadcasted online.
  11. I wouldn’t spread false news in the newspapers to test the waters every week.
  12. I wouldn’t go after companies for trying to make a profit.  A company’s job is to make as much profit as possible within the legal framework that the government sets, if the government sets an unfair legal framework and the companies abuse that, it is not the company’s fault, rather the government officials’ fault.  What’s happening now has taken our country’s FDI and consumer spending down to zero, destroyed consumer confidence and will bankrupt the country and its businesses very soon.
  13. I would stop sending gas to Israel until they pay a fair price for the gas, and if worst comes to worst and Israel takes Egypt to court and asks for fines to be paid, I would take the Israeli politicians to court and accuse them of bribery and corruption to set the deal up.  Also, I would threaten to completely open our borders with Gaza and allow all types of non-military supplies through (food, fuel, building materials, etc.) in case that happened.  I’ll show them who’s boss.
  14. I would be extremely fast to implement environmental conservation laws to protect places like Ras Mohammed from fishing.
  15. I would NEVER lie, and apologize when I make a mistake.

Now the question is: Why hasn’t the SCAF EVER done any of the above, if they are the beautifully decent and kind-hearted revolution lovers that I am 100% sure that they are deep down inside? Why am I unhappy and disappointed that they aren’t doing the right thing, when I know that inside their hearts they want to do it more than anything else in the world? (check sarcasm meter again)

I could list the reasons as to why they haven’t, but then every single one of those could be considered a direct insult to the big boss, so I’ll bite my tongue and let each one of you sit there and list them out yourselves.  It doesn’t take a genius to understand why all the good things mentioned above haven’t happened yet.

والله الموفق

Follow me on Twitter for more of the above @amrbassiouny

3ala Fikra, This is an Anti-Military Blog Post

The purpose of this blog post is to break the barrier of fear that has been subconsciously built after we read the sad and somewhat scary news that came out today: Maikel Nabil has been sentenced to 3 years for “insulting” the military and spreading false news.

If I’m not arrested within the next 3 days for writing this, then you can go ahead and express yourself without worrying again (2ib2o ittamino 3alaya yareet).  If I am arrested though then start preparing “Free Amr Bassiouny!” posters for next Friday, and get the #FreeBassiouny hashtag trending on twitter and all that.  Oh, and I expect no less than 50,000 members on my Facebook page. =D

The following is a completely insult-free expression of my personal opinion, if anybody isn’t happy about it they can go ______ themselves (it wasn’t me!).

Why did we have a revolution bizzapt?!

We all forget to go back and think of the main reasons why we had this revolution, so let me remind you; they were  all political in nature.  This was not a revolution that started for economic reasons, we didn’t go out on the 25th and 28th saying we want cheap bread (because we were all well-off and coming from Dokki and Heliopolis), but we wanted to take the political system down.

Taking the political system down is a big word though, when you get into the nitty gritty it’s mainly the following:

  1. Freedom of speech
  2. Freedom of assembly/expression/protest
  3. Freedom of press
  4. No torture
  5. The ability to choose our leaders
  6. Going after old regime’s corrupt leaders
  7. New constitution
  8. No more lies

Since the military took over, what of the above have we gained ground on? Let’s take them one by one.

1. Freedom of speech

Verdict: Worse than before.

Back in Mubarak’s days, they would have to cook something up on the guy who pissed them off.  For example, in Ayman Nour’s case, they had to cook some bogus fraud charges to give him a few years in jail, they couldn’t just straight up convict him of spreading “false” information about Mubarak’s regime’s corruption and all that.

Maikel got it straight-up though.  Nice and honest.

2. Freedom of assembly/expression/protest

Verdict: Same as before

This is a tricky one.  When Mubarak was around, we couldn’t really protest properly but it was 100% legal provided you liasied with or received a go-ahead from the ministry of interior before hand. Under the emergency law, which is now not in effect, assembly of several people was illegal, and so a “permit to assemble” was required. This didn’t mean of course that if things got out of control, riot police wouldn’t crack on you. They would. Whoever did got a good beating and maybe arrested, beaten and thrown in the middle of the desert to have to find his way back home (permit or not, if they don’t like it the response would be similar).

Under the rule of the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF) though, we can protest bira7itna, but they are treated as if they’re illegal (the law is vague enough to not really mean all protests are illegal, but pretty much any protest can be).  Every once in a while the military will go ahead and brutally attack everybody and arrest many and maybe even kill a few.  Then they will go around telling everybody it was the protesters who shot at them first  and that the protesters were hurt due to stones being thrown from other protesters (it doesn’t have to make sense).  Either way, there’s always a threat of having the law used against you, since it’s illegal to protest.

So in case 1 it’s legal to protest but you can’t, in case 2 it’s illegal to protest but you can.  I can’t make my mind up as to which one I would prefer.

I would say it’s a tie at this point, though I expect it to get worse in the coming future.

3. Freedom of Press

Verdict: Worse than before

Back in Mubarak’s days, there was always a clear line between who was saying the truth and who wasn’t, who was opposing the regime and who was getting orders from it.  Things have changed a little now, it seems that all those who used to oppose Mubarak in the past have now become 100% controlled by the military.

Considering Maikel Nabil only got a total of zero mentions in the newspapers, and zero mentions on TV (until the verdict was passed), I would say that is highly suggestive of a very serious level of control on the media.  Also, considering that Wednesday and Thursday always have the highest concentration of anti-bad guy news to appease the crowds before Friday, I would confidently raise an eyebrow to that.

I could go through tens of other points, but then things like spreading lies about April the 8th and what happened there as well as no mention of the officers that escaped is even more evidence that there are red lines that cannot be crossed.

Finally, some information got through to me from journalists working in liberal and privately-owned media outlets (trying to be very non-specific here) mentioned they had orders not to speak about the military negatively.  This link just came in to confirm this: http://ebfhr.blogspot.com/2011/04/letter-from-army-to-egyptian-newspapers.html

Also, articles written about Mubarak now are harder to get printed than ever, as they hold a high risk of libel considering the threat he issued recently about publishing “false” information about him.

4. No Torture

Verdict: Definitely a step up!

The police now are probably a lot more touchy feely about torturing people, and State Security isn’t half as powerful as they used to be, so torture by police is definitely down.

On the other hand, we have a far more posh and reputable torture scene going on these days. Instead of being tortured in an underground dungeon in SS Nasr City by rude SS officers, you get to be tortured by high-quality Egyptian Armed Forces in the historic Egyptian Museum in Tahrir.

Human rights groups and political activists are extremely happy about this improvement, and they have been buying cakes and sending them back and forth throughout the past month in celebration.

5. The ability to choose our leaders

Verdict: Same as before

If the Military didn’t think we should choose between them and a presidential council, then we don’t have a choice.  When we do, I’ll change the verdict to it being better than before.

Also, instead of creating a referendum and rigging it like Mubarak would, they made a referendum and then did whatever they had planned for as if the referendum never even happened.

They should have come out and said “Ba3taaaa!” like we used to do in highschool.  And if you don’t remember what a ba3ta is, it’s when you point to the left and say “An elephant!” and your friend looks to the far left and you say “Ba3taaa!” then point at him and laugh in his face.

6. Going after old regime’s corrupt leaders

Verdict: Same as before

They left Mubarak in his villa in Sharm El Sheikh probably using satellite phones to transfer his money and sell his assets all over the world, while they scapegoated relatively innocent ministers like Rashid Mohammed Rashid and Ahmed El Maghrabi and jumped them from day one.

It seems it was generally a show that they were staging for us, and continues to be.  They arrest specific people during strategic times to look like they’re doing something only when everybody starts getting angry, then nothing happens after.  Just like the good old days.

7. New Constitution

Verdict: Same as before

Do I really need to explain this one?

8. No more lies

Verdict: Same as before

Let’s just say that the SCAF have a very hard time not contradicting themselves several times on the same subject during a press conference. Nothing has changed on this point, the truth is only told if it works in their favor. I can be greedy about this point and go on and on about all the times where they said something and did the exact same opposite of what they were saying, but then I will simply mention three times where the opposite of the truth was told: Torture in museum, virginity tests and everything about April 8th in Tahrir.  That’s more than enough to act as proof for this subject.

Final Verdict:

5 Same as before          (63%)
2 Worse than before     (25%)
1 Better than before     (12%)

Overall, things are pretty much the same, if not worse.  The only thing we have today that is better is that peaceful protesters get to be tortured in an internationally-recognized tourist destination rather than an underground prison cell.

Conclusion

I would like to end this post with an actionable conclusion. Unfortunately though, the only action I regard as helpful is to to ask you all to continue protesting in Tahrir Square, and to my dismay that carries a hefty fine of up to 500,000 EGP or 1 year in prison. So, definitely don’t go protesting, that’s a horrible idea, because personally I don’t have 500,000 LE, which means I’ll end up spending a full 365 days in prison with Ahmed Ezz and Habeeb El Adly getting on my nerves, and that would be an epic #Fail situation.

All I will say is “hint hint” and “nudge nudge”.  Hinting and nudging are legal, right?  I didn’t say anything, I’m just saying …

Finally, I would like to say that none of the above represents my personal opinion in any way, shape or form.  In fact, everything written above is complete crap (just in case, you know).

و الله الموفق

Oh, and follow me on twitter for more on all my other personal opinions that I don’t believe in: @AmrBassiouny

Will The Real Counter-Revolution Please Stand Up?

Will the real counter-revolution please stand up?

I have recently avoided offering my opinion in writing on the matrix of political and conspiracy theories that have been flooding the airwaves, Internet and offline conversations since January 25 — partly due to frustration but also because I found it rather difficult to form of a clear picture what was going on. But right now, a certain sense of clarity has hit me and some pieces of the puzzle are coming together. So I’d like to share with you what I regard as a plausible scenario.

Bear with me, it may be a little complicated and confusing at first, though I’m hoping my point will become clearer as your read your way to the end of this post.

The Plan

The National Democratic Party (NDP) has always kept the sheep in line using fear.  There were only two options for us: either we have a “secular” government that will create stability and safety for us all, or we will have to accept the Muslim Brotherhood (or the “Brother Muslimhood” as our former number one intelligence man Suleiman liked to call them) and live under an Islamic government.

Now that the president is ousted, and people have woken up to more options, more freedom and a desire to create their fate, someone (and his entourage) are not happy. If I were the head of the NDP, and I wanted to prove all those “bastards from Jan25” that broke my back that they were wrong and I was right, what would I do? I’d stick to my word and fulfill the prophesy that I had once predicted.

Prophecy #1: Instability & Insecurity

On January 28, what was the first thing that this government did? Rewind back a few weeks. Remember when club-wielding vigilantes set up cordons on streets, and teary-eyed house wives called in to State TVs wailing about thugs and people breaking into their homes. Remember that horror movie? That was our government fulfilling their promise, and they did; they created widespread chaos, insecurity and instability.

And mind you, this was not a burst of instability, it’s part of a long-term plan that is meant to sustain a level insecurity that can remain for months if not years, and the following events point to that:

  • Before the Military Council came in power (i.e. events left to happen by the NDP)
    • Large number of prisoners released.
    • Looting, widespread crime and terrorizing neighbourhoods.
    • Stolen police and military uniforms and weapons.
    • Destroyed economy (financial/economic security).
    • Chaos within the ranks of the Interior Ministry.
  • After the Military Council came in power (i.e. events that happened as the Military Council watched, possibly with their blessings)
    • Shenanigan of State Security Investigations (Amn El Dawla) immediately after the resignation of Ex-Prime Minister Ahmed Shafik.
    • Sectarian violence (in the presence of the military).
    • The torching of Atfeeh Church by thugs causing the Christians to come out on the streets in protest.
    • Christians attacked by “thugs” immediately after chanting “Allah Akbar!” (warming us up for the Bogey Monster — the Islamists?)
    • Women’s march attacked by thugs.
    • Thugs and military holding a joint operation to attack and arrest protesters in Tahrir and evacuate the square.
    • Military attacking Coptic Christian protesters in Maspiro when their numbers dwindled.

To conclude that point, the NDP said that without them there would be instability and now there is instability (because of them). The military only continued to fulfil this prophesy by working with thugs to instigate the sectarian violence and eliminate legitimate demonstrations.

Prophesy #2: The Bogey Monster/ “El Bo3Bo3”

The second thing we were reminded of, in a manner of speaking, through recent event was the so-called political strength and “organizational might” of the Muslim Brotherhood (MB), they were the Bogey Monster, or “El Bo3bo3” if you prefer it in Arabic.  The second part of the prophecy had to be fulfilled; the Islamists would take over just because they were so powerful as the NDP has always warned … or are they?

This is a much more complicated and much less obvious unfolding of events happening at the moment, so let’s collect those dots then connect the dots together.

The dots:

  • Top NDP officials are not targeted. Those who were handed down travel bans, asset freeze, or were put under investigation are almost only businessmen ministers, which by comparison to some big wigs, were probably the least corrupt (if at all) of all those who were involved in government. The most powerful and corrupt (Safwat El Sherif, Fathy Sorour, Mofid Shihab, Zakareya Azmy & the Mubaraks) were excluded.
  • The US officially says that it does not mind having the MB in the political scene (note that the US heavily funds our military).
  • The MB becomes a legal entity and is allowed to run for major elections.
  • One MB member was on the constitutional amendments committee from day 1.
  • The NDP states that it will not disband, and will run in the upcoming elections.
  • Aboud El Zomor is released from prison (one of the main figures in the assassination of our late president, Anwar El Sadat)
  • Note that the following entities/persons are pushing to vote “NO” to the constitutional amendments & want a new constitution:
    • Amr Mousa
    • Ayman Nour
    • Mohamed El Baradei
    • Judge Hisham El Bastawisy
    • Constitutional law professor Dr. Tharwat Badawy
    • The Judges Club
    • The Revolution Youth Coalition
    • El Wafd Party
    • El Ghad Party
    • Your mother
    • Your father
    • Jesus
    • … and Bhudda
  • The following entities are pushing to vote “YES” on the amendments:
    • The NDP
    • The MB
    • The Salafi Movement
  • The MB officially saying they will not run for presidency, but plan on taking 30-40% of the seats in Parliament.
  • If the constitutional changes are passed, then the elected parliament is entrusted in making the new constitution, and the president has no choice but to enforce it.

Add all the givens regarding instability section plus the actions of the military, that only aid the NDP in going forward with their plan.

Connecting the dots

There is a strong connection or shared interest between the military, the NDP and the MB, who seem to be on one side, while the whole moderate and non-religious political spectrum seems to be on the other.  The NDP and MB have the same common goal of voting “Yes” in the referendum (they’re both strong, have deep pockets and can mobilize supporters), and the military is either working with them or pushing them in that direction (in either case, there is “tawato2”).

On the other hand, we must face the fact that the military is helping in creating an environment where the MB have an upper hand through pushing for early parliamentary elections and refusing a presidential council.

From a political perspective, the MB is looking to control the political landscape through the parliament, not through the presidency.  This is almost a disguise so they can appear to be a lesser threat that is not after taking over the country.  But the fact is that it is in the best interest of the MB to have one of its own as the speaker of parliament, as that position will be equally if not more powerful than the upcoming president (in the more probable case of a parliamentary model of government). If the MB hold a relative majority in parliament (as they openly plan to do), that means that they will be entrusted with making a new constitution, giving them unprecedented control.

Also, there is seems to be a sort of acceptance towards the MB, from the US to the Military and NDP (in that order). Perhaps a deal was cut?

The NDP’s ability to control the parliament in the upcoming elections is questionable, although considering their confidence and refusal to disband, they most probably have a plan to stay in the game one way or another.  I don’t want to speculate too much on this point though as it is not yet clear to me how that may happen.

On the other side of the spectrum, the opposition parties and figures are too busy trying to be president because it’s fancy, while forgetting that the next government may very well be parliamentary in nature and thus the power will lie with the entity that can control the parliament, not the president’s office. This is a major political blunder that they seem to be oblivious to at this point.

The Military: What gives?

The question remains: what does the military have to gain from this? I can argue that it’s clear and obvious. Field Marshall Mohammed Tantawy has been Mubarak’s man for decades, and there’s no reason why he should not continue to be so.  If anything, he is the only reason why Mubarak can lead a quiet life in the red sea resort of Sharm El Sheikh now while we all swim in the turmoil that he has thrust us into.

The fact of the situation is that the Military is clearly not working in the favor of this revolution, and they are not listening to us so intently and responding to our demands as some have claimed. They have shown that they will torture innocent protesters (including artists) inside the Egyptian Museum, and that can’t be good, let alone those that they falsely label arrested protesters as “thugs,” and are currently facing the threat of execution alongside murderers and highway robbers.

So, if the Military isn’t working with us, does that mean they’re actively working against us? Are they perhaps working with either the MB or the NDP?  Which one it is? I personally don’t have the answer … I doubt anyone does. There remains as a big question mark.

Conclusion/Speculation

Following the previous train of thought, it is rather plausible that the MB are being pushed into controlling our next government, possibly in conjunction with the NDP — with the backing of the highest ranking political officer in the military, if our fears and doubts are true.

From there, the NDP (or whoever is representing their interests at that point) can come out and tell us “we told you so” about the MB taking over, and “we are your only saviour.”  We will then be expected to bow down to their command once again in order to rid ourselves from the Islamic government that we revolted and fell into. Iran, anyone?

When that happens (and the people will be fed up by then) the thugs will come back out to the ballots and the rigging will happen all over again in favor of the NDP. But this time, the people will accept it, in fact they will probably welcome it, because they have seen what the country might turn into after Mubarak and his entourage were removed, putting us straight back into the hands of the one political gang that we revolted to rid ourselves of.

Now, this is what a true counter-revolution looks like in a country like Egypt is corrupt down to the bone. We the people are on our own against all odds, against all forces working against us. Against a counter-revolution that is powerful and that is strong, manipulative and with many faces. Though the one thing that they do not understand yet, is that they cannot stand against the will of a nation.

The only way to foil this plot is to vote “NO” to the constitutional amendments.  Even if the argument is not clear to you or you cannot explain the intricate details of the amendments, you can put it in this simple argument:

Dear Sir,

Here are the people who are for the amendments: the NDP, the MBs, and Salafis … and here are those who are against it: Everybody who’s for freedom and who has the country’s interests in mind.  Which side do you want to be on here?

Thank you and have a good day.

Stay posted for more commentary and analysis through my Twitter account: @AmrBassiouny

Edited by Pakinam Amer

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.