Egypten som forbillede og inspiration

Tahrir Sq.
Hvis man ikke selv er araber, kan det være svært at forstå, hvad Egypten egentlig betyder for folk i den arabiske verden, skriver Black Iris of Jordan under overskriften “How Egypt Inspired a Generation of Young Arabs“. Opstanden i Egypten, dens fredelige, men bestemte natur og det enestående mod, almindelige mennesker pludselig fandt i sig selv i disse 18 dage, vil altid og uanset, hvordan det hele ender, stå som et forbillede for unge mennesker i andre arabiske lande:

My generation of 20-something year olds grew up in the shadow of our fathers’ heroes, predominantly the architect of Pan Arab nationalism, Egypt’s Nasser. It is still, after all these years, often considered a sin bordering on social suicide to insult the memory of Nasser, whether you live in Jordan or Iraq. And we accepted it for a long time. Because there were no heroes. We have been searching in the darkness for the light switch, for the appearance of a leader. We have even conjured up ancient heroes, romanticizing their very existence. Turning history in to legend. Because we have been waiting and no one has appeared.

We assumed that if one day an uprising emerged, it would be at the hands of a bold leader. Another strongman to replace the ones we didn’t like. Never, in our wildest imaginations, did we think this uprising would come from the people. Never did we believe that Egypt, a country that had most convinced only a few weeks before January 25th, that this was a country destined for doom; a country that would collapse under the rubble of poverty and corruption and become the very metaphor of a crumbling Arab world. And with it, place the final nail in the coffin of Nasser’s dream. Never did we think our generation, a generation we ourselves have often labeled as apathetic and alienated – never did we think this would be the generation to lead the uprising. That it would be a leader-less uprising. A secular and ideological-free revolution. A genuine uprising of the people, for the people.

Never did we imagine it would happen peacefully. Never did we imagine millions and millions gathering around a city center. Never did we imagine them refusing to leave; of finishing a journey that has so often been abandoned. Never did we imagine they would write for us a new history. For this has been the failure of the orientalist view – the failure to recognize the relationship of one Arab to another, and of all Arabs to Egypt. The failure to recognize that what happens in Egypt does not stay in Egypt, and what Egyptians did for themselves, they did for the entire Arab world. Every Arab citizen glued to a television screen these past few weeks has been thinking the same thing. They have felt it under their skin, and deep in their bones.

The Egyptian youth have demonstrated for us possibilities we never imagined unfolding within the confines of our region. They showed strength and resolve where we have grown up knowing nothing but weakness and acquiescence. They showed us peace when we have only experienced war. They showed us civility where we have been taught to pursue chaos. They persisted where we have learned to yield.

We will wait to see what future Egyptians build for themselves, and its subsequent affect on us living outside its borders but close enough to feel the heat of the fire they began. We will wait to see if Egypt’s next chapter will be as sound and as peaceful as the one it has just finished writing. We will wait to see what happens, but whatever happens, this 18-day history is something no one can take away from them, or from us. It has been embedded in our memories, replacing all others.

Læs endelig det hele.

Christine Makhamra skriver på den ligeledes jordanske 7iber om, hvordan den egyptiske ungdom har vist alle arabere, hvad der forekommer at være en styrke og en vej ud af håbløsheden, som de aldrig har kendt før. Hun forestiller sig, hvad den egyptiske kollega mon vil sige til sine kolleger, når han eller hun vender tilbage fra et par ugers ferie i Cairo: “I toppled a tyrant. What did you do?“:

Our generation of Arabs learned to be jaded very early on. We yielded to the fact that we live under dictatorships, where our opinions do not count. We got used to being called disrespectful and apathetic because of the Lady Gaga we listen to and the gel we wear in our hair. We were accustomed to being told to shut up when we wanted to speak out about the injustices that we see everyday in our own countries. Many of us lost the sense of belonging to our countries. The sense of pride we were told that we should have by our history textbooks was just a figment of the author’s imagination. How could the land that gave birth to our parents who keep putting us down whenever we want to speak up, how could it have given birth to the heroes we incessantly hear about?

We got our answer on Friday when the “Facebook Generation” achieved what our parents’ generation never even came close to achieving; what our parents were scared to even imagine. To call what happened on 11 February 2011 a revolution is an outrageous understatement; because to anyone who is familiar with the experience of today’s Arab youth, this is a paradigm shift to say the least. After being witnesses to our parents’ impotence over the years and knowing that looking up to them will bring us no answers, we decided to take matters in our own hands. We knew that what our parents lacked in courage and imagination, we make up for with passion and Facebook applications.  We knew that we did not want our children to one day look at us and wonder why their parents did not stand up for their right; why their parents did not fight for them; why their parents let tyrants get rich while they and their children are left starving. No, our children will now look at their parents with pride. They will know that the heroes they read about in their history textbooks are the same people who read their bedtime stories. They will know that their parents were willing to die just so that their children would not have to. On Friday, our generation has finally tasted what victory feels like. 80 million Salaheddins were born and none of them are pretend-superheroes that you only find in books. Today, we are all Egyptians.

Og eftersom omverdenen og især USA brugte stort set samtlige 18 dage på at fumle og lede efter sine egne ben i hele affæren, er det egyptiske gennembrud absolut ikke noget, egypterne skylder nogen. Man kunne have ønsket for den vestlige verdens egen skyld, at den havde kendt sin besøgstid, men for egypterne og araberne er det næsten bedre på den måde. Hvad de end har opnået, har de opnået selv. Men igen, læs endelig det hele.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.