Monday, June 18, 2012

Lessons Learned ?

We all knew that it will be an up-hill battle, a learning opportunity. We have all experience and witnessed learning curves before. We usually bear the consequences of the mistakes  made along the road to enlightenment and we often get to enjoy the fruits of the experience. However, when an entire nation is leaning how to engage into politics and survive within a democratic environment, the stakes are much higher. Again, we are all learning and we have no one to show us the way. Unfortunately it will be our children who will bear the results of our forte into democracy. 

Before I venture further I would like to iterate my position. I have never supported this so called revolution. I believe that the events were instigated to simply ouster the old regime and introduce anarchy. The true objective was to replace Aldo be Shahin, to have a specific party/individual in power. Yet the aim of this post is not to explain my point of view on the revolution. I simply wished to reiterate what I have been saying all long, as I did not want to be accused of flip-flopping. Whether I supported the revolution or not is besides the point. At the end we are all Egyptians, we should work together for the betterment of the country and of society. This is why I choose to participate - as much as I can - in this political awakening. I must admit that now, 18 months after all hell broke loose, I am able to have a more objective point of view. Maybe because I no longer leave in Egypt - so my livelihood is not contingent on what happens within the country, or simply because I have come to terms with the death of My Egypt. We all have to acknowledge that the Egypt we know, The Egypt we grew up with is long gone and it is not coming back. We must move forward, towards the future. Although the journey ahead is full of turmoil and it'll change course as much as the stairs at Hogwarts, we must preserve and keep course. 

In my attempt to move ahead, I will summarize the lessons learned (or are they?) during the past year and half. This is from my perspective, similarly I encourage everyone to do the same. Together - as one nation - we must learn to face our failures before we celebrate our victories. Most importantly, WE must LEARN from our mistakes.
  1. Lets take a moment to get our heads out of our assess and confess that we know shit about shit ! I apologize for the profanity, but I think it is called for. Enough is enough. If we want to be vocal about politics, economics, religion, history . . etc, we have to first possess some knowledge (any knowledge) about these topics. If not, then at least lets agree that we are operating on an uneducated bunch or point of view, and not facts.
  2. Every right comes with responsibilities. If we want democracy (as our basic right) then we have the responsibility to participate in the democratic process. If we want changes, then we have the responsibility to start with our selves. If we choose to passively stand on the sidelines, then we forfeit the right to complain, comment, or protest.
  3. Fel Et-had Kowa is not just a mantra or slogan, it has to become a way of life. In order to unit segregated entities we need clear objectives and goals. If we examine the 25 Jan Revolution, the only thing uniting the people in Tahrir square at the time was the objective of getting rid of Mubarak. Unfortunately, if this was a true revolution, getting rid of Mubarak should have been a mean and not a cause. Once that ultimate objective was met, the people in the square started to move into different groups, disagreeing on almost everything. Some pseudo-leaders emerged, such as Hamdeen El Sahaby. Yet they were not able to rally enough support to guarantee a spot in the 2nd round of presidential elections. I personally believe that if Abu El Fotouh, El Sabahy, El Aow, and Khaled Aly formed a united coalition, they would have created a powerful unit strong enough to overtake the Muslim Brotherhood in the 2nd round. ma3lesh 7'era fe 3'erha, hopefully the lesson is learned (or not?) and we can rectify this mistake in the upcoming parliamentary and presidential elections.
  4. Furthermore, objectives don't only unit people but they also provide a cause, a purpose, a reason to be patient and withstand the hardship and keep the course. Objectives renew people's hope when all seems gone. Enough with empty slogans, kefaya she3arat. It is easy to point fingers at the old regime and governments, blaming them for everything. We should demand from the newly elected President, who is backed by a political party, and people's assembly,to set forth concise road-maps, objectives, and measures for achieving their promises. It will be our responsibility to hold them accountable for these results.
  5. Last but not least, we must acknowledge that this is only the beginning and it is going to get much worse before it gets better.