Friday, February 11, 2011

Emergency Must be lifted in Egypt

February 9, 2011

Upright Opinion

By Saeed Qureshi

The first step towards democratization and opening up the Egyptian society is to lift the sordid emergency imposed in Egypt since 1967. Short of that, any measure to respond to the momentous uprising would be meaningless.

For two weeks the Egyptian people are going through the most traumatic phase marked by grievous sufferings, sacrificing their lives and mundane comforts. The old and young, the children and adults, the women and men and in fact a diverse cross section of society all have come out against a notorious outfit.

The beleaguered clique that has been in power for thirty years, is not prepared to lift the state of emergency, rewrite the constitution, send Hosni Mubarak home and hold elections. The vice president, notorious for his inhuman and brutal expertise in torture and repression has assumed the role of the front man for a person who is shorn of even an iota of self respect.

Gen. Omar Suleiman, the hastily appointed vice president is sheltering a person who is still audaciously keeping himself in the highest position in complete disregard and indeed disdain of what was happening all over Egypt against his reprehensible rule.
Since 1981, the Mubarak dynasty has let loose a reign of terror on Egyptian nation through a merciless intelligence network, wicked secret service, fiendish police and iron fisted army. That a head of state never thought even for a moment that his government was entirely totalitarian and the people of Egypt were being ruled like helpless subjects, speaks for the apathy and indifference of the former towards the latter.

Despite this dacoity, he has a desire to perpetuate in his unpardonable monstrosities without realizing that the Egyptian nation was up in revolt against him and that a grass root revolution was in the offing.

The superficial and perfunctory announcements that emanate from the echelons of power are mere cosmetic window dressing, absolutely rejected by the Egyptian nation, yearning and striving for a civil society and for a government that should be of the people, by the people and for the people. What legitimacy Hosni Mubarak and his bunch of accursed cohorts are left with to be still sitting in the power citadels and turn the whole country into a torture cell and an enslaved enclave, cut off from the civilized world.

If Hosni Mubarak had the slightest impulse of self -respect, he should have taken a lesson from the Tunisian dictator Zine El Abidine Ben Ali and left his country with remorseful apologies. Is he still under the illusion that he can hang on to power by crushing the will of the Egyptian people by using brute force and employing the, repressive, insidious and dirty machinations?

Is he still banking upon the unqualified support from his overseas abettors and mentors that would still help him in his maloevlent and tottering grip over the country? Is it not still enough for him and his mendacious and rapacious coterie to have milked this magnificent country, enriching themselves at the cost his poor and impoverished countrymen? Does this diabolic cabal of self seekers want to keep the people under their ruthless dictatorship forever?

The United States must shed its ambivalence and stop taking consolation and shelter behind deceptive statements of the Egyptian vice president and his farcical overreach to the leaders of the people’s uprising. Immediately after meeting the revolution leaders, he discarded the principal demands of lifting the state of emergency and announcing elections. Under no circumstances should this group of hardened thugs be allowed to beguile America and the world at large for remaining in power.

The rulers in Egypt are the rejected felons and highway robbers of civil, human and fundamental rights, the culture of democracy, the openness and freedom. It would be an historic betrayal towards the people of Egypt waging an epic struggle for their dignity, if United States and the free world do not firmly and unequivocally demand of the disgraced ruler to quit.

The revolution now underway in Egypt is going to fructify and there are irrefutable indications that the people in Tahrir Square would not retreat until the villainous gang of kleptomaniacs and oligarchs are forced to run. The struggle of the Egyptian masses would go down in history as a monument and epitome of a nation that finally awakened from its docility and captivity and fought for their emancipation and for the right to live with dignity, freedom, liberty, equality and openness. The civilized world must support their urge for a democratic, humane and civil society.

The writer is a Dallas-based journalist and a former diplomat. Email: qureshisa2003@
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