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The Middle East has traditionally been important for the world economy. The Middle East situation today has an impact on all aspects of life in America and much of the world.

Only by understanding the motivations of the various factions in the Middle East can we hope to understand how to promote peace and national security for Middle Eastern nations, Europe, and the United States.

Jan 23, 2012

The Ongoing Egyptian Revolution

The Egyptian Revolution of Jan.25th , 2011, which has led to the removal of its most corrupt authoritarian regime through peaceful uprising has been recognized worldwide as an ideal model that ought to be recorded in history books.
Within few hours the Egyptian people will celebrate the first anniversary of the Revolution.
It is regrettable to say that the demands the younger generation have set as their main objectives, have not been completely fulfilled.
One should stress the fact that important changes will not be achieved over night . It requires planning, clear direction, and defined strategies
One should also recognize that the Egyptian people have experienced free and democratic elections for the first time. However, due to the absence of direction during the parliamentary elections, some groups were marginalized.
First the younger generation who took the risk to lead the uprising and were the vanguard of the revolution, have been ignored by the Egyptian higher military council, by the old political parties as well as by many of it s members who have been associated with the previous corrupt regime.
The young people did not designate political leaders to represent them , and neither had the time or financial resources to enable them to compete with the established political groups. It is also unfortunate that these political parties have intentionally marginalized the younger generation and were ready to collect the rewards of the revolution.
The second group , who also played an equal part in the revolution are Egyptian women who constitute half of the total population. They have obtained 1.8 % only of the parliament seats.
The third group who also did not get a fair share of seats in parliament are the Egyptian Copts. The Copts constitute 10% of the total population.
One of the negative behavior which was used during the campaign is the use of religious slogans which was in violation of the election rules.
While writing this post it was reported that marshal H. Tantawi has appointed 10 new members to the newly elected parliament which is presently meeting January 23rd 2012
There is no doubt that through history revolutions do not always meet the hoped objectives.
However, some of such negative incidents that took place during the past year could have been avoided .
After all we were last year eyewitnesses to the revolution
The leading Egyptian newspapers report on a broad ranges of security violations, that took place all over Egypt. These could have been stopped if the High Military Council policy has been clear and firm.
For example the interference to stop the national transportation system carrying tourists by baltageya (hoodlooms) is a national crime.
Those who were involved in such acts should receive the utmost penalties. Other acts of interrupting transportation was the blocking of main roads. Those who are involved in such type of violations are trying to send message of protests to the government regarding issues that are relevant to them and needs official attentions. Further more I was sadly disappointed to read that the designated Egyptian nuclear site “Al Daba” has been vandalized by some of the natives who claim that more than 30 years ago the government confiscated their property with minimal compensation. Those who attacked the site have destroyed all of the facilities which have been built by the government at a cost of more than 1 billion Egyptian pounds. They have been threatening to destroy the site during the past few months but the government has ignored their warning.
Such an unfortunate events could have been prevented. If those in charge of the Egyptian national defense had strengthened the security in light of the threats made by the people in that area.
Rumors were spread that foreign agents are behind the destructions by the small group. There is some truth behind it.
Many people who have been suppressed and were ignored by previous regimes for more than 4 decades, suddenly began to breath freely and expect changes overnight. This is not going to happen that fast. There are some people who are against the new changes which took place since Feb.11th, 2011, and attempt in many ways to sabotage the revolution for the benefit of those who have lost their privileges.
There are groups who have no loyalty to their own country and are willing to cooperate with foreign agents as long as they get paid for their activities. For example, the destruction of the “Al-Daba” nuclear site, which is an important part of Egypt's future national security must have been part of a foreign sabotage act. Despite the fact that those who did the destruction were compensated for the property. Their claim is false, because the site is a public property and not a private one.
Many of these people are simple and illiterate and are easily manipulated by foreign agents, specially if they get paid to do certain tasks.
The Israeli strategy regarding the field of nuclear technology is well known. During the past 5 decades the Israeli government conducted a series of international violation. Such as killing Arab nuclear scientists, bombing the Iraqi nuclear reactor in 1987, as well as the suspected Syrian nuclear site in 2007. Further more it recently objected the proposed Jordanian nuclear reactor project to be used to generate power to desalinate sea water in order to meet the severe fresh water shortages in the country.
Israel is the only nuclear power in the middle east region. According to a CIA report, Israel possess between 200-300 nuclear bombs. For that and other reasons Israel has been conducting an international campaign to prevent any country in the middle east from acquiring advanced nuclear technology.
As a matter of fact, CNN has recently reported (1.22.2012) that the Atlanta Jewish Times advocated the killing of the US president Barack Obama for not being supportive of bombing Iran nuclear reactors.
Let me conclude by stating that those who expect immediate solutions for their problems in Egypt, they will be disappointed. Changes are not going to happen overnight. Furthermore, there are many people who have legitimate complaints and have the right to express their views, but should not act in violation of Egyptian laws.
The Egyptian revolution which took place a year ago will lead into a bright future for Egypt. Changes that require the reconstruction of political, economic, and social institutions needs planning, effective strategy, commitment and above all, time.
Last year my wife and I witnessed the revolution. We made it point to be in Egypt for this year anniversary of this unique event.

Before leaving the US to travel back to Egypt to attend the celebration, some of our friends raised the common question. Is it safe to go back now? Yes it is.

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