I am totally addicted to Al Jazeera now. I must have watched 25 or 30 hours of live feed from Cairo and Alexandria since I found the live link Friday. How can you not want to watch? It's like watching a baby being born. It's beautiful and wonderful and mysterious and magical. It is all those things and more. It is a people rising up spontaneously and taking to the streets and saying to a despot, "We refuse to be ill-used and neglected any longer. You have cheated us and lied to us and taken what was not rightfully yours from us. You have imprisoned us without due process. You have tortured. No more. You will go away now."
They have stood up to the secret police and the riot squad and the jack-booted thugs fled.
I missed Tunisia but now it has begun in Egypt and the under-class is winning and how wonderful it is! The old men in power turned off the telephones and the internet and imposed curfews and still more took to the streets. Now it has spread to Algeria and to Lebanon, and to Yemen and to Jordan.
The people have risen up because the rich run the government.
The people have risen up because emergency powers that were invoked 30 years ago are still in force.
The people have risen up because the men in power have done nothing about rising unemployment and prices.
The people have risen up because the President keeps promising change but change never comes.
If you listen to the leaders here and in Europe talking about a "peaceful transition" you can tell they are afraid. They are afraid because the guns and the tear gas that are turned on the crowd were made in the USA. They are afraid most of all that their own people will notice that all too many of the sins of President Mubarak are to a lesser degree their own as well. If it spreads to Italy or to France people might remember 1968 in America and in Europe.
In 1968 there were riots in hundreds of cities all over the world.
One hundred and twenty-five in just one week in America.
All that is necessary is to give people hope...and then make them angry.
I will be posting regularly as this phenomenon progresses.
Be seeing you