Sunday, February 13, 2011

Mabrouk, not Mubarak

For the last thirty years, Egypt has been defined by the name of its leader, Mubarak. Now, three days after the ousting of this man and its streets still full of victorious protestors, it's defined by the Arabic word for congratulations, mabrouk.

Mabrouk, Egypt. After three decades of corruption and state terror, you came out on top. We're all praying that you stick to the path you're on, and become the first (or second, after Tunisia) real Arab democracy.

I think the best way to highlight this special moment is to share the experiences of an Egyptian friend who celebrated the fall of Mubarak with her fellow citizens at Tahrir Square.

Here is a note Yasmin Nouh wrote on her Facebook profile earlier today. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

If you want democracy, you will find it in Maydan Tahrir

First, May God reward the Egyptians with a smooth transition into democracy and a just leadership. Second, this post is a little overdue.

--- Parts from a day in Tahrir -- Wednesday, February 9, 2010

Although the entrance was lined with tanks and gun-clad soldiers, I felt like I was entering a sanctuary. A group of young men welcomed us with cheery chants, rhythmic drumbeats and warm smiles.

If you want democracy, you will find it in Maydan Tahrir – free, open and safe. I had entered a realm that did justice to one of the revolution's slogans: 2eed wahid. One hand. I found myself among artists, poets, doctors, engineers, farmers, the rich, the poor, families, children, Christians, Muslims, youth activists and those who were previously indifferent, the secular and the religious, all united against injustice.

As one poster in the square put it, "May God forgive you Mubarak. You made us Egyptians all love one another."

The people entering the square were divided into two areas – one where the men searched men and the other where the women searched women.

I was searched at three different checkpoints, one after the other upon entering the square. I was searched not by the army, but by the protesters. My broken Arabic made the first two women smile.

“I forgot my ID at my house,” I said.

The lady at the last checkpoint laughed at me, and said the same thing as the first two women.

“It’s fine. It’s fine. Not a problem. Just bring it next time, okay?” After a pat down, I was let through and entered a world completely different from the Cairo I had been living in. Clean, vibrant, and for the first time, I saw smiles emanating a fight for hope instead of a sorry acceptance of loss.

--------

Inside Tahrir, you will find a makeshift medical clinic near the entrance. It wasn’t located in the center of the square, because the fights between the pro-democracy protesters and the pro-Mubarak thugs took place near the entrance.

You will find multiple memorials honoring the 300+ revolutionary martyrs who died during the clashes.

You will find a large poster of the youngest martyr – a boy of nine – hung up behind the main stage area, along with many other signs with revolutionary chants written on them.

Outside Maydan Tahrir, in the rest of the city, you will find enormous piles of trash on the streets and their corners. Inside, you will find young men and women picking up newspaper remnants, garbage and plastic bottles, separating wastes from recyclables. They will ask you whether you have any trash, substituting the word trash for Mubarak.

“Do you have any Mubarak you would like to throw away?”

No. I had nothing on me, not even a small scrap. I looked at the ground to find a piece of newspaper, anything to throw away the regime, but there was nothing.

You will find men and women in sleeping bags nestled at the foot of a few army tanks.

"So they don't move," they explained to passerbys. And the tanks did not move - neither them nor the people camped underneath.

And when the time for prayer came, thousands formed into straight rows. And around them, others locked arms to protect those who prayed from the overwhelming crowd of people. Chainsmokers locked arms with Muslim scholars, and businessmen with villagers. Christians, even though they weren’t praying with the Muslims, would repeat the Imam’s takbeerat*, because it was so noisy, to help the Muslims in the back rows follow the prayer.

Inside Tahrir, you will find children on their fathers’ shoulders, waving shiny Egyptian flags, leading chants among the protesters. I saw one boy, maybe no more than 10 years old, with a bright face, but an aged voice.

“Ya Mubarak Ya Khasees, dem al-Masri mish rakhees.” (Oh Mubarak, You betrayer, the blood of an Egyptian is not cheap).

You will find women in niqab yelling at the top of their lungs, “Mish hanimshee, huwa yimshee.” (We’re not going away. He is going away). They broke stereotypes imposed on them (by the West and East alike) in minutes. They were not quiet nor meek and the only thing that had been oppressing them was their government, not the veils wrapped across their faces.

You will find women walking in business suits, some were foreign journalists and others were Egyptian workingwomen.

You will find vendors selling bread and traditional Egyptian desserts.

“Want Kentucky?” Some of them would jokingly ask.

(Some people claimed on Egyptian state television that the protesters were being paid and receiving free meals from KFC to protest against Mubarak).

You will find young men carrying bags of cheese and meat sandwiches, asking people in the crowds if they had eaten lunch. They would do the same thing later on for dinner.

You will find people selling red, white and black headbands - the colors of the Egyptian flag.

You will find white-bearded men side-by-side with youth chanting underneath a large Egyptian flag “Al-sha3ab yureed isqat al-nitham.” (The people want the order to fall down).

You will find groups of men and women with anger in their eyes, sitting down in the middle of the square and staring out into the crowds. You will find others with their heads down, reading the Egyptian newspapers. And others jogging across the square screaming chants.

You will find an old fala7i (villager), selling his shoes for seventy billion pounds (the same amount that Hosni Mubarak allegedly holds in his assets).

You will find groups of young women, who, for the first time, looked safe, in the place that was once infamously known for incessant cat-calling and hoot-hollering from men who had nothing better to do.

But now those same men had something better to do. They finally had an outlet, a way to express their frustrations in a dignified manner, instead of through self-demeaning cat-calls.

You will find a city of tents, where people of all different classes, ages and colors camped out, and were being served tea and sandwiches. Some looked calm and content; I could hardly see what the past 30 years had done to them. Others looked apprehensive and worried, waiting to revive a strong memory of better days that were too far behind them (Egypt used to be known as the Paris of the Middle East).

At the main stage area, a group of well-known Egyptian academics and leaders from various opposition parties spoke, ending each speech with a revolutionary chant. And although they were prominent and well-respected, it was clear who the real leaders on stage were - twenty and thirty-something year olds directing the stage, announcing updates in between speeches and paying close attention to the crowds' movements.

Right before maghrib prayer, a man from an opposition party said something I can never forget: "They say we can't have a democracy. They say we don't know what democracy is." He paused and pointed at the crowd. "We say, look at Tahrir sqaure. Look at everyone in Tahrir square, and right here is where they'll find the real democracy."

His words were immediately followed by cheers and then the mantra for the day echoed throughout the crowd, "2eed wahid. 2eed wahid." One hand..one hand..

28 comments:

K said...

assalamualaikum! is it ok if i put this post as a note on facebook. i really love it :D

Vivian said...

For everyday tasks to complex projects and programs, Microsoft Project 2010 combines powerful planning capabilities with advanced collaboration tools to help your agency set realistic expectations - and manage time, personnel, and resources to stay on time and budget.Project 2010 download gives individual users an intuitive, easy way to lay out tasks and timelines

smith Green said...

Thanks a lot for great sharing!!
louis vuitton bags

louis vuitton handbags

cheap louis vuitton bags Series of Men

Lin Huang said...

caihuanglin20150513
coach outlet online
michael kors handbag
oakley sunglasses outlet
michael kors outlet online
toms outlet
oakley sunglasses
burberry outlet
kate spade handbags
cheap oakleys
true religion sale
rolex watches
ray ban sunglasses
kate spade bags
hollister clothing
true religion jeans
oakley sunglass
tory burch outlet online
michael kors
christian louboutin outlet
michael kors outlet online
pandora jewelry
mont blanc pens
chanel bags
gucci outlet
abercrombie outlet
pandora outlet
ralph lauren
nike air max
coach outlet store online
cheap oakley sunglasses
tory burch handbags
polo ralph lauren
hollister clothing store
true religion outlet
air max 95
tory burch shoes
gucci outlet online
gucci uk
toms shoes
kate spade outlet online

Junda Xu said...

20150711 junda
ray ban glasses
polo ralph lauren
coach outlet
ed hardy clothing uk
christian louboutin shoes
ralph lauren pas cher
air force pas cher
louboutin pas cher
replica watches for sale
michael kors handbags
jordan shoes uk
soccer jerseys for sale
michael kors handbags
michael kors handbags
gucci sito ufficiale
kate spade handbags
air max uk
ed hardy clothing outlet
soccer shoes
longchamp pliage pas cher
longchamp pliage
kate spade outlet
louis vuitton sacs
michael kors
true religion jeans outlet
cheap oakley sunglasses
ralph lauren homme
beats by dre
michael kors
oakley sunglasses wholesale
kate spade bags
coach factory outlet
burberry outlet
tory burch handbags
louis vuitton
coach outlet store online
cheap oakley sunglasses
oakley outlet
michael kors bags
true religion outlet

Wenhao Guo said...

zd0722nike free 5.0
air max 2015
canada goose sale
hermes belts for men
mulberry handbags
hermes birkin
larry fitzgerald jerseys,kevin kolb jerseys,patrick peterson jersey,andre ellington jersey,larry fitzgerald jersey,calais campbell jersey,deone bucannon jersey,andre ellington elite jersey,darnell dockett jersey,michael floyd jersey,sam acho jersey
cheap soccer jerseys
cheap ugg boots
michael kors bags
gucci outlet online
new york jets jerseys
barcelona jersey
cheap wedding dresses
cartier watches
mulberry uk
louboutin uk
lebron james shoes
hermes outlet store
coach outlet store

Wenhao Guo said...

zd0722nike free 5.0
air max 2015
canada goose sale
hermes belts for men
mulberry handbags
hermes birkin
larry fitzgerald jerseys,kevin kolb jerseys,patrick peterson jersey,andre ellington jersey,larry fitzgerald jersey,calais campbell jersey,deone bucannon jersey,andre ellington elite jersey,darnell dockett jersey,michael floyd jersey,sam acho jersey
cheap soccer jerseys
cheap ugg boots
michael kors bags
gucci outlet online
new york jets jerseys
barcelona jersey
cheap wedding dresses
cartier watches
mulberry uk
louboutin uk
lebron james shoes
hermes outlet store
coach outlet store

mao qiuyun said...

washington redskins jerseys
air jordan shoes
ed hardy clothing
ray ban sunglasses
ray ban
barcelona jersey
new orleans saints jerseys
ray ban sunglasses
pandora jewelry
ray ban sunglasses uk
prada shoes
cartier love bracelet
timberland boots
true religion jeans
christian louboutin outlet
cheap nike shoes
michael kors outlet
nike running shoes
true religion outlet
the north face uk
hollister clothing
moncler coats
converse shoes
babyliss
karen millen uk
air force 1 shoes
tory burch shoes
coach outlet store
thomas sabo
puma shoes
abercrombie and fitch
monster beats
cartier watches
kobe shoes
mont blanc outlet
air force one shoes
michael kors outlet online
michael kors outlet
louis vuitton outlet
tods outlet
0807maoqiuyun

sfsd said...

christian louboutin outlet
christian louboutin shoes
louboutin
christian louboutin shoes
coach factory outlet
coach factory outlet online
coach handbags
coach outlet online
coach outlet store
coach outlet store online
chanel bags
converse
converse shoes
designer handbags
ed hardy
eyeglasses online
eyeglass frames
womens clothing
ferragamo
ferragamo shoes
hair straightener
giuseppe zanotti
gucci handbags
gucci outlet
gucci outlet
gucci shoes
gucci shoes
gucci shoes
gucci
handbags outlet
harrods
hermes
hermes birkin
hermes outlet
hilfiger outlet
hollister
hollister
hollister clothing
hollister clothing store
insanity workout
instyler
iphone cases
jimmy choo
jordan release dates
jordan retro
jordan shoes
juicy couture
juicy couture outlet
kate spade
kate spade
kate spade outlet

sfsd said...


levi's jeans
longchamp
longchamp
longchamp handbags
longchamp outlet
louboutin
louis vuitton
louis vuitton
louis vuitton
louis vuitton
louis vuitton
louis vuitton
louis vuitton outlet
louis vuitton
louis vuitton outlet
louis vuitton
lululemon
lululemon
lululemon outlet
mac cosmetics
marc jacobs
mcm bags
mcm handbags
michael kors
michael kors
michael kors
michael kors
michael kors
michael kors bags sale
michael kors
michael kors handbags
michael kors handbags
michael kors outlet
michael kors outlet
michael kors outlet online
michael kors outlet online
michael kors outlet online
michael kors outlet online sale
michael kors uk
mizuno running
moncler jackets
moncler sale
mont blanc pens
new balance
new balance outlet
new balance shoes
coach purses outlet online
nfl jerseys
air max
air max
nike air max

sfsd said...

nike factory
nike free 5.0
nike free run
nike free run
nike mercurial
nike roshe run
nike canada
nike store
north face
north face outlet
oakley outlet
oakley
oakley sunglasses
oakley sunglasses
oakley
oakley sunglasses cheap
omega watches
p90x workout
pandora charms
pandora charms
pandora jewellery
pandora jewelry
ralph lauren outlet
polo ralph lauren outlet
prada handbags
prada handbags
prada outlet
prada shoes
ralph lauren
ralph lauren
ralph lauren
ralph lauren polo
ralph lauren outlet
ralph lauren outlet
ralph lauren outlet online
ralph lauren outlet online
ralph lauren outlet online
ralph lauren polo
ray ban
ray ban outlet
ray bans
ray ban sunglasses
ray ban sunglasses
ray ban sunglasses
ray ban wayfarer
replica handbags
replica watches
retro jordans
rolex watches
rolex watches
watches

sfsd said...

rolex watches for sale
roshe run
roshe runs
salvatore ferragamo
soccer shoes
softball bats
supra shoes
swarovski
swarovski
swarovski crystal
swarovski jewelry
swarovski
the north face
the north face
the north face
the north face
the north face
the north face
thomas sabo
tiffany
tiffany and co
tiffany
tiffany jewelry
timberland boots
timberland shoes
tommy hilfiger
hilfiger
tommy hilfiger outlet
toms outlet
toms outlet
toms shoes
toms shoes outlet
tory burch outlet
tory burch outlet
tory burch sale
true religion
true religion jeans
true religion outlet
true religion jeans
ugg australia
ugg boots
ugg boots
ugg
ugg boots clearance
ugg
uggs on sale
uggs outlet

sfsd said...

coach outlet store
vans shoes
wedding dresses
wedding dresses
woolrich outlet
yoga pants
yoga pants
coach outlet usa
michael kors
michael kors outlet online
michael kors outlet

小 Gg said...

swarovski outlet
cleveland cavaliers
lululemon outlet
woolrich clothing
tiffany jewelry
ugg outlet store
cheap oakley sunglasses
north face outlet online
black friday
ugg boots
green bay packers
babyliss outlet
prada outlet
lululemon outlet store
moncler jackets
soccer jerseys,soccer jerseys wholesale,soccer jerseys cheap,soccer jerseys for sale,cheap soccer jersey,usa soccer jersey,football jerseys
coach outlet online
ralph lauren polo shirts
michael kors handbags,michael kors outlet,michael kors,kors outlet,michael kors outlet online,michael kors outlet online sale,michael kors handbags clearance,michael kors purses,michaelkors.com,michael kors bags,michael kors shoes,michaelkors,cheap michael kors
replica watches
qqq1023

John said...

abercrombie and fitch
cheap oakleys
pandora
pandora bracelets
tod's shoes
nike elite socks
kate spade handbags
jordan pas cher
rolex replica watches
http://www.uggsoutletssales.com
nike blazer
hollister kids
kate spade outlet
christian louboutin shoes
timberland boots
north face
ray bans
toms outlet
longchamp outlet
http://www.MichaelKorsHand-Bags.com
http://www.CoachOutletOnlineSpick.org
http://www.uggsoutletuk.com
air max
hermes uk
michael kors
retro jordans
north face uk
fitflop uk
mcm outlet
christian louboutin uk
football shoes
20151028yuanyuan

Hua Cai said...

nike trainers
louis vuitton outlet
lacoste polo shirts
michael kors handbags sale
ray ban sunglasses
tommy hilfiger
pandora outlet
michael kors outlet online
michael kors wholesale
true religion outlet
cheap mlb jerseys
ferragamo outlet
converse shoes
nike outlet store
lebron shoes
swarovski outlet
tods outlet
rolex watches
toms outlet
beats by dre
jordan shoes
giuseppe zanotti outlet
mbt shoes outlet
prada outlet
basketball shoes,basketball sneakers,lebron james shoes,sports shoes,kobe bryant shoes,kobe sneakers,nike basketball shoes,running shoes,mens sport shoes,nike shoes
adidas wings
air jordan 11
air max 90
cheap ray ban sunglasses
nike roshe run
hermes outlet store
nike roshe
true religion jeans
fitflop sale
nike air huarache
20160310caihuali

柯云 said...

2016-03-15keyun
canada goose outlet
true religion outlet
true religion jeans sale
cheap nfl jerseys
michael kors outlet
toms shoes
louis vuitton handbags
cheap jerseys
louis vuitton purses
replica watches
ray ban sunglasses
designer handbags
gucci outlet
toms shoes
toms wedges
louis vuitton
cheap nfl jerseys
giuseppe zanotti
michael kors handbags
kobe 10
christian louboutin outlet
coach outlet
beats solo
tory burch handbags
christian louboutin outlet
coach outlet store online
canada gooses outlet
insanity workout
nike sb shoes
oakley sunglasses
ray ban sunglasses
ralph lauren outlet
nike air jordan
coach outlet store online
coach outlet
adidas superstars
hollister outlet
adidas shoes
gucci outlet

Libin Huang said...

20160321libinprada outlet
reebok trainers
christian louboutin uk
cheap nhl jerseys
nhl jerseys
rolex uk
tiffany outlet
timberland boots
kobe bryants shoes
michael kors handbags clearance
michael kors outlet
michael kors handbags
iphone cases
soccer jerseys
soccer jerseys wholesale
michael kors handbags
calvin klein outlet
louis vuitton bags cheap
nike air max 90
michael kors outlet online
louis vuitton handbags outlet
fitflop sale
christian louboutin outlet
michael kors handbags clearance
adidas wings shoes
michael kors handbags
longchamp solde
ray ban sunglasses
beats headphones
louis vuitton handbags outlet
cheap jordan shoes
cheap football shirts
asics
michael kors canada
louis vuitton outlet

Gege Dai said...

ugg australia
ugg boots
the north face jacket
cheap nike shoes
michael kors outlet
nike roshe run
ugg boots sale
rolex watches
coach outlet online
nike free 5
ugg outlet uk
true religion jeans
true religion outlet
prada sunglasses for women
ferragamo shoes
ugg outlet
new balance outlet
longchamp handbags
fitflops clearance
calvin klein underwear
marc jacobs outlet
hollister clothing store
cheap nba jerseys
michael kors outlet
hollister uk
michael kors outlet
abercrombie and fitch
abercrombie and fitch
supra shoes
ray-ban sunglasses
louis vuitton handbags
fitflops sale
air max 90
michael kors outlet clearance
omega outlet
chanyuan0808

dong dong23 said...

rolex submariner
polo shirts
canada goose coats
louis vuitton handbags
ray-ban sunglasses
seattle seahawks jerseys
uggs outlet
kate spade
michael kors outlet
longchamp handbags
mbt shoes
louis vuitton outlet stores
ugg uk
louis vuitton outlet
coach factory outlet
louis vuitton bags
polo ralph lauren
the north face
jordan femme pas cher
nike roshe run
michael kors outlet
louis vuitton handbags
adidas ultra boost
louis vuitton outlet
kobe bryant shoes
giuseppe zanotti
michael kors handbags
uggs on sale
true religion jeans
louis vuitton uk
kevin durant shoes
kobe bryant shoes
ugg boots
lebron james shoes 12
curry 3
nike air max
coach outlet
ray ban sunglasses outlet
louis vuitton handbags
20168.22wengdongdong

xumeiqing said...

20160924meiqing
christian louboutin
adidas stan smith
rolex daytona
adidas outlet
ugg australia
louis vuitton bags
michael kors outlet
mont blanc pens
michael kors outlet
chaussures louboutin

chenlina said...

washington wizards jerseys
pittsburgh steelers jerseys
gucci uk
coach outlet store online
michael kors outlet
scarpe hogan
louis vuitton paris
adidas outlet
louis vuitton outlet
ugg boots
chenlina20161014

Unknown said...

soccer jerseys
cartier watches
coach outlet online
nike foamposite
longchamp bag
giuseppe zanotti outlet
true religion uk
cheap uggs
louis vuitton pas cher
beats by dre
chanyuan10.18

Gege Dai said...

ralph lauren polo
louis vuitton outlet
gucci outlet online
swarovski outlet
ugg outlet
louis vuitton handbags
iphone case
moncler jackets
michael kors handbags
tory burch outlet
20170109lck

Unknown said...

cheap ray ban sunglasses
louis vuitton outlet
michael kors outlet clearance
coach outlet online
ray-ban sunglasses
michael kors outlet
swarovski outlet
gucci outlet
burberry canada
cheap ray ban sunglasses
chanyuan2017.03.18

caiyan said...

hermes outlet online
rolex replica watches for sale
yankees jerseys
adidas nmd r1
adidas yeezy boost
fitflops sale
cheap nike sneakers
yeezy shoes
adidas superstars
celine handbags
0408shizhong

shengda xu said...

christian louboutin shoes
coach factory outlet online
cheap nfl jerseys
coach outlet online
air jordan retro
kd 8 shoes
parker pen
pandora bracelet
air max outlet
gucci outlet online
xushengda0718

shengda xu said...

christian louboutin shoes
coach factory outlet online
cheap nfl jerseys
coach outlet online
air jordan retro
kd 8 shoes
parker pen
pandora bracelet
air max outlet
gucci outlet online
xushengda0718