Remember the Old Egypt?
I'm trying so hard to remember the ten days between the day Tunisians brought down Ben Ali and the day our revolution has been born. I've blacked out most of the incidents that happened at that time, I only remember very few things. But just a few days earlier, with the first hour of this year, I remember the church bombing, how innocent souls were killed. Christians were sure that this bombing was done by Muslims, nevertheless, there were no words against Muslims at all, they knew they were terrorists, speaking falsely in the name of Islam and Muslims, they knew that Muslims were against what happened and were mourning the death of innocent Egyptians as much as they were.
Seven days later, we celebrated Christmas together, Muslims and Christians, we united on one thing and celebrated Christmas. We proved, to ourselves rather than to anyone else, that we can be united, that we care for each other, that we both want a better Egypt, a safe Egypt for everyone, the Egypt we can all be proud of. We proved that we do love each other, that our differences in religion are nothing to us. That we all believe in one thing. Later, we understood that this was done by the state security, and I have to thank them for being stupid enough, they showed us that we can be united and fight for our rights together.
Seven days later, Tunisians brought down Ben Ali, and showed us that there's hope if there's belief. In 23 days, they were able to bring down a dictator of 23 years, just because a university graduate who couldn't even work as a grocer set himself on fire when he lost hope in life. They believed that they've waited for too long and that it's time to be free, and they set themselves free, in 23 days.
In that same day, there was a call for an Egyptian revolution ten days later, inspired from the Tunisian one. Egyptians celebrated the Tunisian revolution because they were happy for them, but also because it has given them hope that we can do it too, that we can set ourselves free too, that we can revolt too. And so there was the call for the Egyptian revolution.
Next day at work, I had two students at my office and one told the other:
شفت الثورة بتاعتنا يوم 25
آه يا عم سمعت
أنا: إيه أنتم بتقوله باستهزاء كده ليه؟ مش مش مصدقين؟
لأ مش مصدقين طبعا بس ممكن تبقى مظاهرة كبيرة
أنا: آه ممكن بس يا رب تبقى ثورة فعلا
أكيد كلنا نفسنا
And then the setting yourself on fire series started, as if this is the password to the revolution, one by one Egyptians started to set themselves on fire. They forgot that we had Khaled Saeed months earlier to make us angry enough. They forgot that if we're going to revolt, then Egypt needs each and every one of us. These people had hoped so much for a revolution, but didn't believe in us.
A few days later, a friend wrote this on Facebook: "revolution, could it be?" I commented saying that yes it could, if we believe in it, but I wrote these words with more hope than belief. I wanted this to happen so much, but my belief wasn't strong enough. I didn't believe in us, Egyptians, enough, I was wrong.
My mother goes to the supermarket five days before January 25 and buys us food and life essentials enough to keep us going for more than a month. But she also did that without believing, we always talked about it, we always said we hope it would really turn into a revolution, but none of us believed.
The the number of attendees on the Facebook event increased, and with it my hope has increased. But who would have thought? Who would have thought it would be a revolution, just a few of us with strong faith did. On January 24th, I was at work and overheard the security guard talking with the office boy. The office boy said the following:
يا عم مظاهرة إيه؟ أنا هاقعد في بيتنا هو حد في البلد دي بيعمل حاجة؟
And then came the day, and the turn out was more than anyone would have thought. But still, on that day, a friend tells me, these protests are just funny, I can't stop laughing! But hope got us through. It all started with hope, then hope turned into belief and we made a revolution. We believed in our power and we turned our one dream into reality. We overthrew a dictator and his regime, in 18 days, while smiling. We did, what we thought was, the impossible.
Now after more than a hundred days have passed, we still have every reason to believe in our power. We've seen with our own eyes what we can do. We also have every reason to have hope, we're done with the hard part, we just need to clean up the rest, and we know we can do it, we can't give up, we can't stop now, when we're almost done. See how much negativity there was in the ten days before the revolution? And we did mover forward, can we give up now? After all this has happened? Can we give up now? NO, we have to finish what we've started, we have to save our revolution.....