12 February 2011

Hail to the Egyptian Revolution – But Keep Your Powder Dry

Mubarak Down and the Army Generals Must Be Next

One can only stand in awe and admiration of the Egyptian masses for achieving the overthrow of the dictator Hosni Mubarak, former leader of the most important US client in the region after Israel. Their bravery and endurance is as remarkable as is their suffering.

A report by Chris McGreal in The Guardian only 2 days ago show the Egyptian army’s hostility to the revolution, even in Tahrir Square, the centre of the protest movement.
There can be no doubt that the Army, which has now taken power, is up to its neck in all manner of human rights abuses and corruption. If the revolution is to triumph it is essential that the armed forces, who until recently buttressed Mubarak, are not allowed to destroy the gains made so far. The revolution must continue until those who defended Mubarak and his agreement with Israel are defeated.

The revolution has succeeded in its aim of overthrowing Mubarak but it hasn’t succeeded yet in overthrowing Mubarakism, the system that he installed. The military is still the primary power in Egypt, albeit now it is in the open.

At the moment we are in a transition from a dictatorship under Mubarak to Martial Law. It is essential that the army is broken from its officers and the support that undoubtedly exists within its ranks for a democratic transformation of society proceeds.

In my article a few days ago on the Egyptian counter-revolution, when police and lumpen elements were sent in to attack the demonstrators, I warned of the dangers of a counter-revolution. That danger is still very real and there is a major possibility of a blood bath and the army turning their fire on civilians and demonstrators. There is a need for a working class party to unify and provide organisation within the protestors' movement, which embraces a number of different classes and class interests, in order to forge ahead for the full democratisation of Egypt and the expulsion of US imperialism.

Tony Greenstein

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