Sunday, February 13, 2011

Mubarak is Gone

Mubarak has resigned, and the army has taken over. Now we see what happens next. The problem is not simply Mubarak, but an oppressive system, that benefits a tiny part of the population, while the rest have far too little.

This is from a 2009 article in The Guardian:
"The proportion of Egyptians living in absolute poverty has risen despite relatively rapid economic growth this decade," Reuters reported in 2007.

Thus the neoliberal economic reforms led by Gamal (Mubarak) and his aides have harmed ordinary Egyptians and benefited well-connected entrepreneurs – 20% of Egyptians own 80% of the country's wealth, according to the United Nations human development report.

The opposition attributes poverty to the corruption of some of Gamal's aides. And they warn that the gap is widening between the two worlds of Gamal and elitists allied to him, and the millions of marginalised Egyptians.

The isolation of Gamal's circle was signified by a recent controversial statement by (steel tycoon Ahmed) Ezz – that the increasing numbers of cars and cell phones in the country indicate that Egyptians are living in luxury. He failed to mention the 43% of Egyptians are living on under $2 a day.

This figure was revealed in the 2009 Arab Human Development Report, along with other shocking facts – such as a 28.6% illiteracy rate. This discredits Gamal's economic vision and undermines the assumption that his succession to Hosni Mubarak can improve Egyptians' quality of life...

Egyptians' dismay is growing: 73% view the economic situation as bad, and 41% think it will worsen, according to a 2009 Pew report. The past few years have witnessed clear signs of popular anger, such as the labour strikes now frequently held. And the regime's crackdown on opposition continues unabated...

This was Egypt prior to January 25, 2011. So what happens next? Free elections? Free labor unions? Jobs? Education? A better distribution of the nation's wealth?


Blogger El Gato Negro said...

I think it depends on the egiptian people. They have to join to control the army goverment and to form a new coalition oriented in a new democratic path. It could be really revolutionary if they can do it, and if they´re left alone to do it. The worse case scenary will be an international intervention to "help". We know how that ends.

9:17 AM  

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