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Monthly Archives: October 2011

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