During the past few days (third week of November) the protestors in Tahrir Square have clashed with the Egyptian security forces, which have led to the deaths of more than 30 people and the injuries of more than 650 people. It is regrettable to say that the Egyptian Higher Military council is still using some of the security tactics that used to be followed by the previous regime.
Also, it is unfortunate to say that the Egyptian army, which has supported the 25th of January Revolution that forced Hosni Mubarak to surrender his authority, also led to the investigation and arrest of less than a dozen people from the previous regime.
The Egyptian public began to suspect the sincerity of the Egyptian Higher Military council and their commitment to support the revolution. So far, the Military Council has failed to fulfill the demands of the protestors, which has led to the uprising.
In a previous post, I raised the following question: was the 25th of January uprising was a revolution or did it turn out to be a military coup? In my judgment, the members of the military council were part of the previous regime. Furthermore, the military force has been the ultimate authority in Egypt since 1952 and they are not going to surrender that power to an elected civilian authority. The purpose of the protest movement, which has been taking place for the last eight months, is to send a message to the military council of demands that have not been implemented. For example, some of the demands that the protestors have made clear are: first, the trials of many of the members of the previous regime, including Mubarak, need to be expedited. Second, the judicial system needs to be cleansed of people who were appointed by the previous regime. Third, the emergency law must be removed and suspects must be tried by civilian courts instead of military ones. Fourth, a civilian cabinet must be established that will be responsible for conduction and managing the society business during the transitional period until an elected parliament is completed. Furthermore, the transitional government should be independent and not under the thumb of the military council as has been the case with the cabinet of Isam Sharaf.
The Military Higher Council’s basic responsibility is to secure the borders of Egypt and to support the security police force in maintaining security and orders for the Egyptian population. On this count, the military has failed to perform that task.
The turn of events during the past few days reflects similar scenes of what used to take place between January 25th and Feb. 11th, 2011. For that reason and others, the protestors have been calling on the Military Higher council to surrender their authority to a civilian one.
It is also a surprise to hear the military council issuing an official statement that was aired in the Egyptian mass media in which they have expressed their condolences to the families who have lost loved ones. Also, they have asked the Higher Judicial council to form a committee to investigate what happened in Tahrir Square and those who were responsible for the deaths that took place and to be held responsible for the crimes committed.
Such an official statement by the Military Higher council is nothing but a public relations gesture. The Egyptian people have overthrown the blanket of fear that prevailed during the past six decades. The demands for freedom and a democratic government is the main goal of the protestors and the sooner the Higher Military council reckons with this fact, the better the end result will be for all.