Friday, 27 January 2012

January 25 & Tahrir Square; Egypt, Going strong

Tahrir Square, during those 18 days it took to topple Mubarak, turned into an existential 'republican' of its own

It was a day in history when Cairo reclaimed its name as the "victorious" city. But what was launched on that momentous day at Tahrir Square was more than a revolution for liberty and dignity. It was an act of designing an immaterial republic, a state of mind and psyche.
It was a day of judgment. Egyptians in spectacular unison set out to dismantle a dysfunctional and decayed republic and for 18 days, creatively founded the "republic of Tahrir Square", changing the course of an entire region.

Agency was displayed in multiple colours, prayers, words, shapes, cries, songs, dances and slogans. Perhaps, nothing equals the beauty of such creativity than Egyptians taking over the public square to make it their own and taking charge of time. That is when 31 years of dictatorial urban planning and of regimented timing ceased to have an effect.

Tunisia once again connects with Egypt. Just as the Fatimids left Mahdia to go and flourish and prosper in Egypt, founding Cairo, so did the revolution sparked by Bouazizi. No where in the Arab Middle East was Tunisia's revolution received more warmly and passionately than in Egypt. The embrace of the flags said it all, and the slogan read: "You first, we next"

Rebellion was integral to tahrir to the moment when the world stopped to watch Egypt reinvent itself. Rebelling is good. Every myth, every ethic and every policy in Egypt and the rest of the Arab world was always geared towards oppressing even the thought of rebellion much less playing it out so openly, defiantly and collectively in the hub of the Pharaoh's city, close to his mugamma and in full view of his uniformed and un-uniformed guardians. The 'ghalabah' (down-trodden) complex so entrenched in Egypt was smashed with every song, dance, amongst other endless carnivalesque techniques for overthrowing tyranny. The Egyptians did this on their terms, through re-ordered time and space

But lest we forget, Egypt is still falling. The behaviour of the SCAF (Egyptian Army, or so they call themselves that) is appaling. Regardless, the Egyptains never gave up, the Arab support from the other 22 countries  waved Egyptian flags. In Spain, a country rich of Arab culture protested in support of Egypts revolution. Egypt is not alone, but I fear that the Arab world is, to an extent.

Will the Muslim Brotherhood cause a religious conflict in Egypt?
Lack of Speech?
Will the SCAF let go of their power?
Will another revolutions spark from this?

There are still many questions that need to be answered, but unfortunately, we have to wait. Time is not on our sides.

Intelligent protest: That is the answer to what kind of protest Egyptians staged in the square. Egyptians dismissed the state when they shifted the focus of protest, attention and creative protest to a central square. It escaped the attention of security planners. More or less, the goal posts were changed, and with it the terrain on which Egyptians did draw the lines of battlefield with Mubarak and co. That was partly how they triumphed.

Republic will live on - always lurking to bring the Egyptians back to a square of no particular dimensions to resist, if need be. The other republic materially being today designed and populated with parliamentarians, officialdom and state offices matters. But it matters even more if the republic that was Tahrir Square on January 25 for 18 days remains a beacon of inspiration and hope

There may be differences since the Arab Revolutions started in December 2010, but they are still on going, some countries are evident, while others are not. Tunisia , Libya & Egypts revolutions have not stopped nor will they for a long time. The freedom of Arabs is what we long for. And that is what we will get

Thank you for reading

Follow me on twitter; @OhSweetArabia

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