Tuesday, February 15, 2011
What a difference a month makes. Just revisiting this blog and you would think that everything was on the ledge about to be tipped over for the giant mouth of capitalism to swallow us whole and spit us out through its rear. But... What a difference a month makes.
We had Ben-Ali toppled in Tunisia, something that really just had most mainstream news outlets really oblivious to the events that led to his exile and the eventual revolution that is still taking place in the North African country that really has little to no importance when it comes to its scale in world commerce and trade and even population. But "little Tunisia" did strike at the heart of what subjects in the Middle East and North Africa were all too aware of; that "austerity" measures and free market cronyism and corporate protectionism did little or nothing at all to advance the cause of the working poor and the peasants in the region and in fact it only lead to more money being scoffed down the elite's accounts while the rest of the people languished in detrimental conditions that would lead one brave Tunisian to set himself alight for the sheer desparity of the situation. He set all of these things alight and while it is very misleading and dishonest to limit the roots of such a movement to take down a dictator of 24 years to one such symbolic act, as the labour and the people's organisational skill and determination in the face of brutal oppression and police abuse that really took down Ben-Ali, it definitely lit a fire in people's minds that things are not okay and that they should make a stand.
In tandem with what I wrote about "the Left", it seemed like that I was pretty much on the money as every single opposition party were taken aback at what happened in Tunisia and later in Egypt and that they were merely just piggy-backing the wave so they could stay relevant in the peoples' eyes. And although Ghannouchi and El Baradei did get plenty of play, they remain on the outside and had little to no influence on the movements and attitudes of the people occupying the stronghold of the dictatorships respectively. The organised left didn't see it coming and it was up to common people and the working class to take upon themselves and take action to bring those fuckers down, something that those of us in the West are still stricken from doing and way too divided to even focus on such a premonition.
Now as Egypt also gets into the nitty-gritty of post-dictatorship and into the more pivotal period of consolidation of the revolution against the players of counter-revolution (the US and Israel), and as Tunisia goes from strength to strength to make sure that all of their fighting was for something worthwhile, it seems that both have taken the form of a socialistic revolution that could really challenge the rest of the region into thinking that there really is a better way for the Arabs who have been enslaved by Kings and Emirs and puppets of imperialism. The road ahead for both is a massive uphill battle and as the media looks to more "sexy" topics (they have already stopped reporting on Egypt as a headliner now that Mubarak has resigned, as if a dictactor resigning was the only demand of the people), and as the spectre of US Capital attempts to wring the neck of Egypt's working class from rebuilding the system of exploitation, civil war looms, and it shows in every history of revolution that those upper class douchebags will not give up their privilege without a fight. Rest assured, the workers of Egypt have a stronghold, not only in their country but within this whole world as they are in control of one of the biggest ports of world trade. With Egypt, this powerhouse can be awakened and can use its leverage in capital and military (but the military is STILL under US bribes) to help bolster smaller and weaker movements in other countries such as Saudi Arabia and Jordan and even Syria. Just the easy symbolism of having the biggest Arab country to give support to working class struggles in the region can only lead to better things, as we see these dickweeds attempting cosmetic "reforms" so they can stay in power without pissing off the wrong people but it won't work. As the Angry Arab stated, the fear of authority has been broken and it can never go back.
Let's not get ahead of ourselves. Alot can happen and as of right now, nothing can happen and Egypt can remain like it was just like what happened with Marcos in the Philippines where the military just removed the head of the turkey and the body (the military) kept moving along without any changes except for a prettier head (Aquino was voted in and now we have democracy in the Philippines without any question of the free market politics which ravages Filipinos). Egypt can have a "nice reform" man up top while the military pulls all the strings. (You just want to weep at all the press naysaying all those African revolutions where the military rules.) But the workers seem steadfast and they know what's on the line and they are organising more strikes until they are satisfied (and anything less than a retooling of the system is unsatisfactory). Yemen is getting hotter and hotter; Bahrain is seeing more and more people getting arrested; Syria is even seeing some solidarity; Jordan can only get bigger and Algeria seems to be close to being a full-fledged uprising (but the repression will only be harder as everyone wants to avoid Mubarak's fate). Keep in mind that every country, no matter how big or small, is different from the other, but the people have the most in common with the others as they all suffer deeply from the inequality and destitution and repression of these monarchies, oligarchies and plutocracies.
So keep yourself glued to this space... As the revolution is coming...