We are all Egyptians now

February 2nd, 2011 by Julian Egelstaff Leave a reply »

Last summer, police in Alexandria tortured and murdered a 28-year-old man named Khaled Said. Afterwards, supporters created a website called We are all Khaled Said. This horrific event was one of many catalysts leading up to the the current revolution to end the brutal dictatorship in Egypt.

Today, we are all Egyptians. The peaceful protesters who had gathered over the past week, have been attacked by armed men. Witnesses say they have seen government officials paying people to join the attackers, and found government IDs on some attackers. I don’t think you need witnesses to know the truth, you just need to put two and two together:

  • A week of peaceful protests telling the dictator to step down (peaceful except when they were attacked by police)
  • A dictator who said last night he’s not going anywhere any time soon, and there would be chaos if people didn’t go home
  • A day later, violent attackers descend on the protesters, complete with tear gas

I mean, come on. This is the same government that shut down the internet, confiscated journalists’ camera equipment, and arrested the journalists! The dictator has no clothes!

You can find out more on Al Jazeera’s English channel, as well as from many Egyptians on the internet, including my friend and colleague from the Drupal community, Khalid Baheyeldin — Khalid’s blogKhalid’s twitter feed.

I do not know what we outside Egypt can do, except exercise our own freedoms in support of theirs. That’s why I am writing this. We can all contact our elected leaders and urge them to articulate our outrage and to pressure the powers that be in Egypt to yield to the will of the people. If you are in Canada, go to the prime minister’s website and send him a message. And as long as you know your postal code, you can get contact info for your local member of parliament and tell them what you’re thinking.

Millions of Egyptians are trying to change their country for the better. What can it mean for our own freedoms, if we do not stand against the egregious oppression they are facing in this struggle? Never send to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee.


1 comment

  1. New York Times has a related piece, written from the front-lines…worth reading:

    We Are All Egyptians, by Nicholas D. Kristof

Leave a Reply