Tuesday, 31 January 2012

Powerful Protest

Campaigners are taking to the streets of Egypt to spread revolutionary messages while standing in silence. I came across this campaign on Salah Salem street in Heliopolis, on the 28th of January 2012.
The people want prompt just trials

We don't want compensation for their souls. We want punishment for their killing.
We don't want compensation for their souls. We want punishment for their killing.
You started and we will continue the journey.
Your life in retaliation.
A martyr is not simply a number in the news.
No constitution under military rule.
Egyptian blood is of high value
"They may torture me, break my bones, even kill me. Then they will have my dead body, but not my obedience."
Mahatma Ghandi
Presidential elections = Stability.
Punishment to who killed my brother with a bullet.
A martyr is not simply a number in the news.
Someone lost his life for a free life.
Martyrs' blood is the revolution's fuel.
The people want prompt just trials
The people want urgent just trials. Martyr's blood is the revolution's fuel.

Sunday, 29 January 2012

Hello Grandpa...

Photo / Design by Yasmin Salem. Photo taken on 27 Jan 2012 in Tahrir

Children sing song of Freedom in Maspeero

Children sing a song of freedom outside Maspeero (where the national television building is based) on Jan 28, 2012

Translation of Song:

Supreme Council respond to us
You say truth
And kill us
Our imprisoned brothers and sisters
Oppressed in your prisons

Freedom, Freedom, Freedom

Saturday, 28 January 2012

Egypt is open to Tourism

Photo taken in Tahrir on 28 January 2012
The "Man of the Moment" on this photo explained to me that the pyramid he was carrying on his head represented tourism and its significance to Egypt.

Translation of slogans on pyramid: 
Egypt above all
Egypt is free
I love Egypt

Translation of words on the miniature obelisks:
Mars Allam

Wednesday, 25 January 2012

Marching to Tahrir on 25 Jan 2012


Friday, 13 January 2012

"Float like a butterfly. Sting like a bee."

Artist Unknown, Heliopolis, Merghani Street, 28 August 2011

Artist Unknown, Heliopolis, Merghani Street, 28 August 2011

Muhammed Ali's, "Float like a butterfly. Sting like a bee," came to my mind as a good timely framework connecting the images back to (post) revolutionary Egypt. Revolutionary and counter-revolutionary forces seem to be engaged in a long boxing match.

I discovered these reincarnations of Panda under a bridge in Heliopolis. I'm not sure if they're by the same artist. 

Sunday, 8 January 2012

What would you do if you were President of Egypt?

A friend asked me yesterday what I'd do if I were in charge of the country. I've always found questions that begin with "what if?"exciting. What if you won the lottery? What if you could live for a thousand years? What if you were president of Egypt?

My reply was, if I was in charge, "The people would be the red line." It's a sentiment I've often heard people chant during marches in Tahrir, reflecting people's desire to see Egypt's citizens treated with respect and dignity. 

My policies would put people at the heart of all its programmes ensuring the main pillars of the revolution were developed. I'd also ensure that the government, democratically elected every term, served the country and not the other way around. To see that happen, I'd start off with a constitution that stated on its cover in bold "الشعب خط احمر" that "The people are the red line." The constitution would be sealed in gold with the aim of always upholding "Freedom, Dignity and Social Justice."

My Egyptian utopia would be overseen democratically by three departments charged with fulfilling the revolution continuously. I'd hire ministers tasked with heading up these departments.

Freedom: A minister of human rights would ensure people's freedoms were safeguarded. We'd see an Egypt where citizens were treated equally no matter what their gender, ethnic, religious or sexual background. All Egyptians would be equal in front of the law. Egyptians would no longer have to live in fear of retribution for expressing their views. Police brutality would no longer be tolerated. Police officers would receive a respectable place in society again thanks to their citizen respecting philosophies. The law would encourage mutual respect.

Dignity: A minister of anti-corruption would be tasked to clean up politics, media, business and the justice system. It would ensure the abuse of power was no longer feasible. The main foundation for that would have to be a fair independent justice system. The clean up would ensure corruption was no longer tolerated offering people equal opportunities and a dignified status as citizens of Egypt.

Social Justice: A minister of development would implement policies and programmes promoting a modern 21st century economy, where jobs, education, healthcare, farming, technology, tourism and the environment were advanced with social justice at the core.

Finally, Tahrir would always serve as a place for reflection and protest ensuring those in power are held accountable.

Sunday, 1 January 2012

Best New Year's Eve in Tahrir 2011

Minutes to the countdown as Muslims and Christians celebrated the New Year's Eve in Tahrir in solidarity, sharing love and singing the national anthem, and finally the words: "Bread, Freedom, Social Justice" and "Down with SCAF" as we headed into 2012. As we entered the new year, balloons bearing the colours of Egypt's flag rose into the air as we heard: "Happy new year Tahrir!"