As I sit here today, February 11th 2011, the day of the victory of the Egyptian Revolution, placing my words onto paper, I am filled with a euphoria that is at once both exhilarating and ghastly. Exhilarating because of the unprecedented conquering which the people of Egypt have portrayed in the face of massive suffering and adversity; exhilarating because of the hope it suggests and the death of fear it begets, and ghastly because of the leering mountains of challenge facing the people still, like unleashed demons loitering in each protestors’ peanut gallery. The weight of every emotion associated with the first taste of an organic fight for Freedom rests on my mind, and it swirls me around in a delirium I have not felt throughout my entire life.
I am at this moment, the moment of the fall of Husni Mubarak’s regime, one with the people of the Arab world, and they are one with themselves, all races, all nationalities, ages, generations, sects, classes and histories; they are one in the sweet pride of victory, in the affirmation that we are not slugs stuck in the schism of oriental dialogue superimposed across TV screens and academic studies.
We are today, a collective victory. When I speak or think or feel, I am cautious because I know that all of the people’s plights have rested on this moment and its symbolism, and my words are merely a whisper in the face of the magnanimity of the gusts of change this moment implicates and promises. This is truly a historic moment because it speaks to the heart of every Arab – every man and woman, child and mother, father and sister, lover and fighter, artist and martyr – every being who has known what it means to suffocate under the pressure of the void of freedom we have all felt in one shape or form throughout most, if not all, of our lives. I can now speak in a We which I have longed for, for so, so long. The emancipation of Egypt has given me, an average young Palestinian-Egyptian woman living in the UAE, this sentiment and gift. It has given me the gift to believe again, and to hope that change and improvement are our destiny. Most of all, it has reinstated, or perhaps given birth to a sense of dignity that simply feels so damn good; and it’s been a long time coming. Imagine what this moment has given the millions celebrating today in Tahrir Square. The people of Egypt, lead by the youth, have proven that they can choose and force out of power a dictator, a legacy, and a way of thinking which has very often been comparable to that of an abused child. They have proven that it is possible to not bow down to layers of bureaucracy and colonialism, and to act together in unity. Egypt, as a cultural and political cornerstone in the history of the Arab world, has now released itself of the shackles binding the nation’s future to the NDP’s lucrative plans. The People Have Won, and this is their moment to breathe. Let us hope that this movement and revolution can bring true change, and lighten the burden of tyranny, as opposed to transfer it – as Shaw said. I have never witnessed anything like this in my life. Here is to hope that euphoria gives way to calm, that calm gives way to endurance for growth, and that growth becomes the peace that colors the building of the people of Egypt’s future. I hope their building process continues to inspire the rest of the region to march ahead in brave strides of change.
In the following post, I will attempt to track the mechanics and players of these historic times. Please bear with me as my analysis is a work in progress given the developing and changeable events of these moments. I will source various media outlets, but primarily Al Jazeera, Counterpunch and Wikipedia.
– Love in a Box