Friday, February 11, 2011

So Mubarak goes. But many revolutions lead to more oppression, not less. What happens to Camp David / 1978?

So, Mubarak finally “leaves” when prodded enough times, for lurching around like a millstone. Is this revolution in Egypt one that will “work”?  History teaches that much of the time, the regime that replaces the old is just as repressive, sometimes more, and against different groups, than the corrupt one it replaces.

The last time there was a major revolution in a Muslim country was the late 70s with Iran, and we know what history followed.

So is what just happened in Egypt more like the Berlin Wall, or like Iran?  It is neither, it is something totally different, and still very uncertain.

It’s also a good question as to whether this is a revolution that happened because of social networking technology, despite Mubarak’s attempt to shut it off. 

A month from now, would a controversial American be able to visit the Pyramids and other monuments of one of the world’s grandest civilizations, without the risk of detention?  It’s still unclear.

This does sound like it was “power of the people” – mainly because finally the military did not side with Mubrarak.  How the West and stability with Israel will be affected seems unclear, because this, in sum, seems like a revolution different from all others.  But it does not help that the US had depended on Mubarak’s tactics to maintain “order”, just as that has not helped in even more autocratic places like Saudi Arabia.

I remember one other sequence of history – following the Begin-Sadat talks at Camp David in 1978, under Jimmy Carter, while still living in New York, and following the Yankees’s grand rally that year.  That had been partly through a group I was involved with then called “Understanding”.  I wonder what comes of this?

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