I answer to me this question: can militarism in general support a story of democracy in a Country? At the moment the leader in Cairo is a a chief of the Intelligence Army…

M.B.

Reflections on the current situation in Egypt

February 11, 2011
by Allyn and Holly Dhynes, West Hills Friends

A teeming Cairo with all its traffic, commotion, and dusty air has long been considered a place of refuge for my wife and I during our work in the Middle East. But for the majority of its residents its harsh, degrading, and deprived conditions have taken its toll.

The unanticipated massive protest against the government in Egypt was fundamentally caused by economics—the mounting poverty and growing desperation of the masses. This disillusionment is a common thread throughout the Middle East as autocratic regimes have produced little in the way of democratic reform or improved economic realities. There has simply been no voice and no venue for change…until now.

This historic moment—and it is certainly momentous—is as significant as our own American struggle for independence, or the fight to end slavery or the civil rights movement. It’s a defining moment for the Middle East that is currently plagued by oppression and suppression. Decidedly, the people of Egypt have courageously shown us that we too can have a voice to say “enough.”

It is easy for the world to have apprehension about this new and rather delicate reality in Egypt. But, as Quakers, I wonder if we can take a position of confidence and faith. Do we not trust that where the spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty from fear and oppression? William Penn, like these protesters, was courageously persistent in order to achieve his vision of liberty for all. Sadly, it’s a path not well trod and needs a great deal of light. Let us hold these people in the Light:

•Those who are crying out for change—and those who condemn and batter them.
•The poorest of the poor in Egypt who endure such degradation as living in garbage dumps.
•The rest of the Middle East where similar discontent is present.
•All who are disillusioned and see no hope—may their Light be kindled.
•Those who suppress others for fear of what they will lose.
•The leaders of nations—for wisdom and humility.
Every day in Tahrir Square is a new day of possibilities. May the resilient optimism of freedom win out!

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