A word we may need to re-define–REVOLution

Posted: March 29, 2011 in Thinking aloud
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This is my reasoning on why I feel what happened in Egypt over the course of 18 days of protests was not a Revolution. Let us start with a dictionary definition: “a total or radical change as in revolution in one’s circumstances or way of living,…a fundamental change in political organization,or in a government or constitution, the overthrow or renunciation of one government, and the substitution of another by the governed”.
A look at the formal/eurocentric definition the actions taken by Egypt’s citizens falls short. I however have my own under-established definition: “a radical shift in the concept and act of governance, it will not come without bloodshed and will not see the establishment of leadership emerging from the master’s police force or army by the governed, the revolutionary effort will be planned and may persist for a long haul”.

You see where I am going with this?!
Sometimes I worry for this current generation which is so enthralled with immediacy that they believe they are making history per seconds, soundbites and tweets and feel that change-making has a speedy turnover.

A lot of factors played out in the Egyptian scenario, what is at first admirable is that a mass discontent was transformed into mass sustained protest, their intention and will appears to have successfully got the longstanding leader (Hosni Mubarak) who believed in leadership by succession and inheritance, to step down. There was clear social instability and frustration across citizen groups.  What is however now resulting as the dust settles is; a)leadership from the army, who I hasten to point out speaks for and upholds the ideologies of the state and its leadership…b) rules being enacted to prevent public protest or deter it through ascribing criminal charges, after all in a dictatorship there is no need for protest rules since no one dares complain…c)beatings and arrests of those deemed to have been the ones too vocal in the so-called 18 day revolution.

Do we now begin to re-define REVOLution? or do we speak truth.  What happened in Egypt and I dare say what is happening in Syria and other parts of the Middle East and North Africa amount to unrest, descent even but not REVOLutions.  In my realm REVOLutions must be planned with outcomes in mind, involves going the long haul and being prepared to go it alone, must in the end, after combined bloodshed and martyrdom, achieve the freedoms identified in the predetermined “peoplefesto”, cannot leave change making to the protectors of the same state which is the very bane of the peoples’ existence, it must be radical and not just socially motivated and the REVOLution will not be Televised!!! (with those strategically placed placards written in English while the native tongue is suppressed)…it will not be ‘Facebooked’ or ‘Tweeted’ where the chief participants and annoying pundits dwell outside of the country involved in revolting…yes in my realm the REVOLution is old school not needing approval or intervention but filled with spirit, passion and resolve, has no time for tweets or interviews nor does its participants have time to read this opinion!!


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