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Tahrir Documents: The Revolution Will Be Translated
March 28, 2011 12:20 AM   Subscribe

Tahrir Documents is an ongoing effort to archive, translate, and make available printed matter from the 2011 Egyptian Revolution and its aftermath. We are not affiliated with the papers’ authors nor with any political organization, Egyptian or otherwise.

Example: PDF | Translation (sample below)
How To Revolt by Chanting

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Important Information and Tactics

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Egypt.



PAGE 2

The Demands of the People of Egypt

1. The fall of the Mubarak regime and its ministers

2. The nullification of Emergency Law

3. Freedom

4. Justice

5. The formation of a new non-military government, whose heart is with the Egyptian people

6. Sound management of all Egyptian resources



PAGE 3

TACTICAL GOALS OF CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE

1. Seizure of key government buildings

2. Attempt to incorporate police and military officers into the ranks people

3. The protection of our revolutionary brothers and sisters
posted by jng (6 comments total) 7 users marked this as a favorite

 
Here's one dated March 10, 2011 from "The Egyptian Committee for the Struggle Against Colonialism and Zionism."

They keep using this word "Revolution." Can you have a real revolution if you are not overthrowing capitalism? It seems so. Even socialists appear to have given up on socialism in this part of the world.

Really odd (for me a child of the 60s) to see that there is no "left" in any of these equations. Generally I would say this is a good thing, except that something must hold its place if you are to have a revolution. Anti-colonialism seems to be the only hold-over from the revolutions of the 50s and 60s and that is more mirage than reality.

The anti-Zionism thing though... that one could have legs.
posted by three blind mice at 2:54 AM on March 28, 2011


Anti-Zionism is the socialism of fools.
posted by Joe in Australia at 3:55 AM on March 28, 2011


Anti-Zionism is the socialism of fools.

Whatever that means.

My point is that opposition to, say Mubarak, has been something for "the opposition" (which I guess just means people opposed to Mubarak) to rally around, but upon his departure what fills the void?

My idea of a revolution is that it comes with something to replace that which is overthrown. Lenin and socialism overthrew the tsars, Mao and his communism overthrew the nationals, Castro and his socialism overthrew Batista, etc. In this case, we seem to have neither leader nor replacement social order. Looking through these documents the only theme I see is opposition to the status quo. There is no clear leader, and no clear cause, nothing to achieve past overthrow.

It seems like the committee to which I refer had difficulty in coming up with a name for itself. Maybe it "committee for the struggle against colonialism and zionism" is lyrical in Arabic, but calling opposition to Mubarak anti-colonialism is a stretch of the imagination. Especially as Egypt knows what well colonialism is having endured both French and British colonial masters. Mubarak might have been friendly to the United States and Britain, but he was no viceroy.

As such this "revolution" (or these revolutions) seem/s very much to lack that essential feature of a revolution. If it is to keep its momentum, or achieve anything beyond the replacement of one despot with another, something and someone in each country has to rise to the surface.

Anti-Zionism is certainly a face card and it remains to be seen what other cards are in the deck. It seems pretty clear that left leaning politics does not amount to a pair of twos in this part of the world.
posted by three blind mice at 5:04 AM on March 28, 2011


My idea of a revolution is that it comes with something to replace that which is overthrown. Lenin and socialism overthrew the tsars, Mao and his communism overthrew the nationals, Castro and his socialism overthrew Batista, etc. In this case, we seem to have neither leader nor replacement social order. Looking through these documents the only theme I see is opposition to the status quo. There is no clear leader, and no clear cause, nothing to achieve past overthrow.

Isn't it the case that most revolutions happen in two phases though? First the existing order is overthrown, followed by a period of turmoil, then a new group seizes power and imposes its vision. Many people who rioted against the Tsar were not Bolsheviks and many anti-Shah demonstrators were Marxists or liberal democrats.
posted by atrazine at 5:35 AM on March 28, 2011


I am outraged by this massive violation of copyright!
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 6:08 AM on March 28, 2011


The phrase "antisemitism is the socialism of fools" refers to the use of antisemitism to gain political support from the working class, e.g. That is, economic theory is too abstract for a political platform, so socialist parties ought to win votes by blaming poverty on the Jews.

You're proposing that anti-Zionism be used for the same reason - not because it's right, or because it makes sense, or even because Zionism has the least bit to do with Egypt's problems; you support it because it would be a unifying platform.
posted by Joe in Australia at 4:42 PM on March 28, 2011


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