How do you go forward when you know that just like the majority of every generation before ours, the majority of this generation is also going to act like a bunch of stubborn mules holding up the status quo of racism, oppression, and colonialism with their willful ignorance and silence in the face of injustice.
If this generation was born in the 1880s instead of the 1980s, they’d all be sitting on the sidelines while a few “radicals” demanded women have the right to vote. If this generation was born in the 1940s, they’d all be sitting back while “troublemakers” got ketchup and mustard dumped on them at segregated lunch counters.
Bystanders enjoying the fruits of the radicals who came before them.
I’m hearing reports that a French woman, Marie Renee, died at the hands of the fascists at today’s action. Apparently, she succumbed to her injuries at the Cairo Hospital. I’ll try to confirm with one of the organizers tomorrow morning, but many non-mainstream sources are claiming it has been confirmed. I’m speechless.
Never has my restraint and pledge to be non-violent been so tested. You’ll see the cop in the black beret [left] signaling for the cops with barricades behind us to push in even harder. [1:02] They were lifting the barricade and pushing in & down, instead of just in. So don’t tell me they were just “doing their job.” I had an elderly woman and her daughter pinned under me, crying out. A metal barricade with cops pushing down above me with family jewels at fist level. I did pull the pin from my rape alarm several times to the displeasure of many an authority figure, but I would advise against doing that in future. It’s best not to test the limits of “men” with nothing to lose from breaking your arm.
Egyptians live in a fascist state. I’ll upload the video when possible. We started at 10am. There were police everywhere along my walk to the meeting point. Some activists are blocked in at the Lotus Hotel on Tal’aat Harb in Cairo. I walked myself to Tahrir Square, near the Egyptian Museum. Promptly at 10am, we all joined together in the middle of the street where the green dot is. We marched just a ways, to where the red X is, and then sat in the middle of the street. I think the idea was to march to Gaza…we didn’t get far before we were blocked…so we sat. And it was from that red X that we were physically squeezed and dragged to the black dot where we remain camped now. I believe the idea is to ring in 2010 from what we have renamed Gaza Freedom March Square.
On December 28th, 2009, a few hundred of us stayed at the UN demanding that at least the tens of thousands of dollars worth of aid we brought be let into Gaza. I don’t know how productive it was, but I made a few friends from Oregon and got to practice my Arabic with some Egyptian police before their supervisors took them away for being too nice to us. Sadeeqki!
This was the 2nd protest on Dec 27th, 2009. This protest was unique because it was lead by Egyptians. I witnessed them getting beaten, hit in the face, a woman was put in a headlock by one of the non-uniformed “guys” they have around at these things to do the dirty work. They told me that it is because of this accepted brutality that most Egyptians, though they strongly disapprove of the government, do not protest or take to the streets.
When we first arrived, a friend I was with took a photo and the police quickly approached him. He is Egyptian-Palestinian but speaks perfect English. The police made us go through our pictures to make sure photos of them were not taken. If we’d had spoken Arabic, they wouldn’t have been so gracious about going through our memory cards. They simply would’ve smashed the camera. If they had known I was videotaping later on, who knows what would’ve done. But I’m brave!…right?
As we were getting pushed along, we passed a gate with at least 15 men locked up behind a gate. I was told that those were lawyers who were locked in by the police, prohibited from exiting because they were going to protest as well. After Protest #3, we were going to go back to do what we could to get them released…AKA rabble rouse a bit more…but an Egyptian guy we were with called and told us they were just released. Just a few hours, not bad for Egypt I guess.
This was the final action of the evening. We met in front of Mogamma, in Tahrir Square, near the Egyptian Museum. The same police from Protest #2 but so much nicer and non-violent. Interesting how they treat a protest by foreigners [peacefully] and how they violently oppress any dissent from their own people.