The Architects Of The Egyptian Revolution By Saba Mehmood Feb 2011 Article Review

Published: 2021-06-22 00:29:08
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If there has been a recent event that has affected the world greatly after the tragic events of 2001, it has been the Egyptian revolution. Unpredictable, inconceivable and simply unbelievable, the month of February 2011 that marked the uprising of Egyptians for freedom from a seemingly eternity-long tyrannical rule of Hossein Mubarak was a historical moment. How did the Egyptians manage to walk out on streets and display unanimity in opposing to the dictatorship of Mubarak circulated as the million dollar question. It is still a heated debate topic among various political analysts who are still struggling to comprehend this wave of revolution that has been advancing in the Middle East for a year now.
Saba Mehmood, like all other columnists and analysts, explored this question during its active phase. In the Magazine, The Nation, she has attempted to look into the reasons that triggered a massive revolution. The title of her article is ‘The Architects of the Egyptian revolution’ which was written on 14th February 2011 when the country was actively experiencing the turmoil and was undergoing the metamorphosis. The author was an eye-witness to the events that had unfolded in her country. Thus, she attempted to amalgamate all the issues and factors that she has known about Egypt all along and using her political skills, she tried to explain the Egypt revolution and what factors, other than the alighting of the blogger, caused it. She has even tried to take a step away from the typical techno-centric view that has been primarily used to explain the protest marches and outburst of anger.
The article takes a critical look at the Egypt revolution. It endeavors to explain the numerous other factors that have played a role in uniting the country and fighting to defeat Mubarak. She explains the political and religious scenario and takes the reader down memory lane, pointing at the historical events where the government of Egypt and the institution of police has been unreasonably brutal and cruel. The events that sparked this uprising are not merely the beating brutally and burning alive of the blogger Khalid. They have far more deeper reasons. The political structure that had been forming itself for the past few decades points to a number or contribution factors.
She is taking a look at the political condition and the state of the citizens in Egypt and then compares the situation in her native country with that of other third-world countries like India and Pakistan. She asserts that neither Pakistan nor India has seen such a serious uprising even though the two countries are also ruled by the worst of governments that are negligent about public welfare but these two countries have never had any stable government that is ruling them for decades. Mubarak’s reign lasted over a period of three decades. This is why the Egyptians were engulfed in outrage and they were only searching for a trigger which actually came in the form of the blogger related incident. The tragic incident that affected Khalid’s life spread all over Facebook within a few minutes and out came the world of Egypt, protesting and marching peacefully on the streets.
The other basic point that she has highlighted in her analysis is the events of 2009 and 2010 where the harshness and brutality was seen at its peak. Furthermore, she mentions one surprising factor which was the recent killing of Christians that was hosted by Muslims. She points out the religious differences and sectarian strife that had enwrapped the country. While only recently all Muslims and Christians had been occupied with religious differences, this uprising united them under the slogan of ‘Leave, Leave! O Mubarak’.
This is the major point of her argument which breaks all the impositions placed by those who have favored the social media and how it played the crucial role in the revolt. It is termed as the ‘Facebook revolution’ by most analysts. This is because the events that stirred up were consequently due to the fast spread of information from YouTube and Facebook.
The article looks into this revolution from a different spectacle. I was initially identifying with this revolution as largely a matter of fast travel of information and the ability to unite through the influence of social media. However, the historical arguments that Saba Mehmood has provided are undeniably strong and definitely lead one to examine them and consider them as the possible triggers.
It has helped me picture the political situation of Egypt in the last few years and provided a better picture of the hold that Mubarak had in his reign and how his reign cannot be compared to other countries which are experiencing tyranny but still have far more freedom of expression than Egypt during Mubarak’s time.
The conclusion that can be drawn from this argument about the building up of an uprising is the multi-faceted nature of events that caused these people to react firmly to the torture they had been living under for the past three decades. It was not simply a matter of one incident. The anger, hatred, detests and outrage had been piling up for years and years. The dire urge to crush the brutality engulfed them completely. This is why they reacted to the one incident which marked the end of their patience and the beginning of change in the political outlook of Egypt.
Mehmood, S. 2011. About Us: The Nation. Retrieved June 23, 2012, from The Nation website:

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