News / Africa

Protesters Say Egypt’s Revolution Far From Finished

Egyptians chant slogans against the government and military rulers after Friday prayers, 230 kilometers north of Cairo, in Alexandria, Egypt, July 15, 2011
Egyptians chant slogans against the government and military rulers after Friday prayers, 230 kilometers north of Cairo, in Alexandria, Egypt, July 15, 2011

Multimedia

Al Pessin

Millions of Egyptian protesters throughout the country succeeded in ousting President Hosni Mubarak in February. As dramatic as that change was, however, for many Egyptians it was only the beginning. They say the reforms have not gone far enough.

Tens of thousands of Egyptians have returned to Cairo’s Tahrir Square and other rally points in recent weeks, demanding reform of the police force, the prosecution of top former officials, and faster trials of those responsible for the deaths of protesters who helped oust long-time president Hosni Mubarek in February.

And the interim government has responded. The interior ministry announced that more than 600 senior police officers would be fired.

But many of those who come out to Tahrir Square said there has not been enough change quickly enough.

"I am here today because I have not felt any change," said one woman. "The military council has corrupted political life in Egypt."

“We need to finish what we are doing since beginning 25th of January, you know. And when we came on the 25th of January, we need to change all of the things," said a man on the street.

“It’s just a change of the faces," said another man who was interviewed. "I mean there’s no real change that could satisfy me and my people.”

At the English-language newspaper Daily News Egypt, chief editor Rania Al Malky said the renewed protests point to a fundamental crisis of confidence.

“The minister of the interior had made statements meeting these demands, but people stopped listening because they feel that everything is being done too little, too late,” said Al Malky.

That is all too evident on Tahrir Square, where the main complaint is that police officers accused of killing protesters.

“We didn’t achieve anything yet," said this young man. "Many people, like 300, die for nothing. There is no one [who] killed them.”

To the outside world, it looks like weekly protests every Friday. But for these people, it’s an everyday thing. They’ve promised to stay here, as a sit-in, to live in these tents, until they get justice for the people who were killed during the revolution.

For long-time Mubarak opponent, Professor Saad Eddin Ibrahim, the Egyptian revolution was a lifelong dream. He said his limp is the result of daily torture when he spent three years in a Mubarak prison. Ibrahim said the renewed protests are a good thing.

“Egyptians now broke the fear barrier and if things do not unfold to their liking, they will take up to the square, not just Tahrir Square, but all the public squares in all major cities of Egypt,” said Ibrahim.

Indeed, protesters have already done that, including this demonstration in the city of Alexandria.

But one veteran Egyptian journalist worries that after decades of repression, many people here are too quick to return to the streets because they don’t know how to pursue their goals through a political process. Journalist Hisham Kassem spoke in the building he is renovating for his new media venture.

“You have a mindset which is what I call the prolonged opposition trauma," said Kassem. "And even people like myself can suffer from that because it’s not natural to be in the opposition for 20 years. Now, in some cases, there are political activists who failed to make the switch. They need something to oppose. To them, that’s politics. They’ve never practiced politics properly.”

Proper or not, this is the way thousands of Egyptians are continuing to practice politics, in an effort to ensure that the dramatic change they achieved in January results in the real reforms they want.

Follow our Middle East reports on Twitter
and discuss them on our Facebook page.

You May Like

Photogallery Americans Celebrate Thanksgiving With Feasts, Festivities

Holiday traditions include turkey dinners, 'turkey trots,' American-style football and New York parade with giant balloons More

Video For Obama, Ferguson Violence is a Personal Issue

With two years left in term, analysts say, president has less to lose by taking conversation on race further More

Video Italian Espresso Expands Into Space

When Italian astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti headed for the ISS, her countrymen worried how she would survive six months drinking only instant coffee More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
South Africa Sees Male Circumcision as Way to Reduce HIV Infectionsi
X
November 28, 2014 3:31 PM
South Africa remains plagued by AIDS despite massive government and NGO efforts on prevention and life-sustaining Anti-Retro-Viral programs. But the country has opened up another front to reduce new HIV infections: promoting circumcision. Emilie Iob reports for VOA News from a pioneering circumcision center in Orange Farm, Johannesburg.
Video

Video South Africa Sees Male Circumcision as Way to Reduce HIV Infections

South Africa remains plagued by AIDS despite massive government and NGO efforts on prevention and life-sustaining Anti-Retro-Viral programs. But the country has opened up another front to reduce new HIV infections: promoting circumcision. Emilie Iob reports for VOA News from a pioneering circumcision center in Orange Farm, Johannesburg.
Video

Video To Make A Living, Nairobi Street Vendors Face Legal Hurdles, Physical Violence

The Nairobi City Council has been accused of brutality in dealing with hawkers in the Central Business District - in order to stop them from illegally selling their wares on the streets. Lenny Ruvaga has more for VOA News from the Kenyan capital.
Video

Video For Obama, Ferguson Violence is a Personal Issue

Throughout the crisis in Ferguson, Missouri, President Barack Obama has urged calm, restraint and respect for the rule of law. But the events in Ferguson have prompted him to call — more openly than he has before — for profound changes to end the racism and distrust that he believes still exists between whites and blacks in the United States. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Online Magazine Gets Kids Discussing Big Questions

Teen culture in America is often criticized for being superficial. But an online magazine has been encouraging some teenagers to explore deeper issues, and rewarding their efforts. VOA religion reporter Jerome Socolovsky went to this year’s Kidspirit awards ceremony in New York.
Video

Video US Community Kicks Off Thanksgiving With Parade

Thursday is Thanksgiving in the United States, a holiday whose roots go back to the country's earliest days as a British colony. One way Americans celebrate the occasion is with parades. Anush Avetisyan takes us to one such event on the day before Thanksgiving near Washington, where a community's diversity is on display. Joy Wagner narrates
Video

Video Aung San Suu Kyi: Myanmar Opposition to Keep Pushing for Constitutional Change

Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi says she and her supporters will continue pushing to amend a constitutional clause that bars her from running for president next year. VOA's Than Lwin Htun reports from the capital Naypyitaw in this report narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video Mali Attempts to Shut Down Ebola Transmission Chain

Senegal and Nigeria were able to stop small Ebola outbreaks by closely monitoring those who had contact with the sick person and quickly isolating anyone with symptoms. Mali is now scrambling to do the same. VOA’s Anne Look reports from Mali on what the country is doing to shut down the chain of transmission.
Video

Video Ukraine Marks Anniversary of Deadly 1930s Famine

During a commemoration for millions who died of starvation in Ukraine in the early 1930s, President Petro Poroshenko lashed out at Soviet-era totalitarianism for causing the deaths and accused today’s Russian-backed rebels in the east of using similar tactics. VOA’s Daniel Shearf reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video Hong Kong Protests at a Crossroads

New public opinion polls in Hong Kong indicate declining support for pro-democracy demonstrations after weeks of street protests. VOA’s Bill Ide in Guangzhou and Pros Laput in Hong Kong spoke with protesters and observers about whether demonstrators have been too aggressive in pushing for change.
Video

Video US Immigration Relief Imminent for Mixed-Status Families

Tens of thousands of undocumented immigrants in the Washington, D.C., area may benefit from a controversial presidential order announced this week. It's not a path to citizenship, as some activists hoped. But it will allow more immigrants who arrived as children or who have citizen children, to avoid deportation and work legally. VOA's Victoria Macchi talks with one young man who benefited from an earlier presidential order, and whose parents may now benefit after years of living in fear.
Video

Video New Skateboard Defies Gravity

A futuristic dream only a couple of decades ago, the hoverboard – a skateboard that floats above the ground - has finally been made possible. While still not ready for mass production, it promises to become a cool mode of transport... at least over some surfaces. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Falling Gas Prices Impact US Oil Extraction

With the price of oil now less than $80 a barrel, motorists throughout the United States are benefiting from gas prices below $3 a gallon. But as VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the decreasing price of petroleum has a downside for the hydraulic fracturing industry in the United States.

All About America

AppleAndroid