Sunday, February 06, 2011

The Current turmoil in Egypt and the West

It has become patently obvious that the revolt against the dictatorial regime of Hosni Mubarak in Egypt represents a culmination of thirty years of pent up frustrations. The Egyptian people have endured the corruption, the lack of civil liberties, the oppressive control of opposition groups and profound economic hardship under Mubarak’s leadership for too long. They have lately become of one voice due in no small part to the meteoric rise in social networks. It is of interest to note that one of the first acts of the beleaguered regime was to close down the Internet and Cellular phone communications, for they understand the source of the instability.

Secretary of State Hilary Rodman Clinton speaking at a Munich security conference and commenting on the seemingly inevitable change of government said, “That takes time. There are certain things that have to be done in order to prepare.”

One might enquire as to why this is the business of the United States and the European Union; is this not an internal State issue? The people of Egypt are calling for significant reform. In that case, why is the West engaging in “conversations” with the government currently in power and attempting to forestall what appears to be inevitable? Isn’t Egypt a sovereign State among the community of nations and capable of taking care of its own political and social evolution without interference from outside interests?

These questions can only be answered, if the real underlying relationship between the West and those who have ruled Egypt is examined.

Omar Suleiman, the newly appointed Vice President - January 29, 2011 - previously was Minister without Portfolio and Director of the Egyptian General Intelligence Directorate (EGID), the national intelligence agency, from 1993 to 2011. In this role he was responsible for the systematic implementation of torture of male and female detainees, many of whom were never found guilty of any crimes within the judicial system. It is believed that he often acted in the interests of western intelligence agencies and has been linked to the CIA’s notorious rendition program. It seems that Suleiman will be Mubarak’s most likely successor.

In response to the growing unrest, Mr. Suleiman accused the demonstrators in Tahrir Square of implementing foreign agendas." and claimed that, "certain friendly nations who have television channels, they're not friendly at all, who have intensified the youth against the nation and the state". This does not sound like a leader who holds the interests of the Egyptian people foremost in his thinking. Quite to the contrary, he will more than likely continue the policies of his predecessor if he should come to power.

With these realities in mind, it then becomes clear as to why the United States and the European powers are engaged in discussions with Suleiman and others in the Mubarak government, for they see the implementation of the kinds of significant reforms that the Egyptian people are demanding as a possible threat to Western interests and influence in the region. Old style colonialism is not dead; it has merely taken on a new face.

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