Wishing the world Revolution Mubarak
Protestors, first, in victorious Tunisia and, now weary but determined, in Egypt have sounded a hitherto unheard of warning to despotism at any level – family, community, institution, and nation. The era of digital revolution, a brand new global form of expression of people's power, garnered through blogging and text messages, has begun.
A civil or social upheaval in another country was in the past taken as just that – a civil or social upheaval in another country; too far away or too different to have consequence on another country. But the flurry of events unfolding in particularly the land of the pharaohs since 25 January have made every monarch from Monaco to the Arch of Titus, every Musharraf from Mushin to Rafah, every elected democratic leader from Leadville to Arkhadia to sit up and click open the 'you have a message' icon. The people of the world have risen together. The fruits of globalisation were just ripe.
For too long, very long, have the common person been deprived by words of their leaders, not necessarily elected by them; more often thrust upon them by a combination of local and international conspiracies hatched by leaders of all shades, national and international, to quench their thirst for power, lust for wealth, hatred for their opponents.
Although not many leaders believe in, less practise, the oft unashamedly flaunted maxim that the people are the source of all power, in truth they are. Unfortunately, when the likes of Hosni realise that indeed the power generator lies in city squares such as the Tahrir, it is usually too late. They then try to buy time.
In 1971, the universally abhorred Pakistan military general (he is not the last) Yahya Khan brought out the same rabbit from the hat, then held pleadingly by Zulfikar Ali Bhutto. In a nation-wide speech, more likened to the slur of a drunken (not necessarily in power and politics) man, in refusing to hand over power to Bangla's undisputed leader Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, he begged for time to sort out the nation's problems. He did not realise there were already then two nations. One of them is known as Bangladesh.
That is precisely what Egypt lacks at this critical time in their nation's history. They lack a leader of the stature of Bangabandhu, someone who can unite the people against the tyranny of nearly 30 years. We were facing 24 years of misrule by the military junta and politicians of West Pakistan, who had the underside of their feet licked by Bangla-speaking lickers.
With the appointment of a first-ever Vice President, a mini cabinet, and a committee to look into promised wide constitutional changes, the stage is being set by HM (not His Majesty) to bring in his son for another three decades, unless the people can glue their bottom to the pavement of the square, and reinforce by millions every week, if not day.
It is such rise of the people in different countries every now and then that reminds us of the great leadership acumen of the Father of the Nation, Bangabandhu. In protest against tyranny and demand for freedom, people have come out on the streets in many societies and countries, but not many have returned home victorious. Sheikh Mujib made it look so easy as he multi-tasked his way to snatching victory for the people: he puffed on his cigar, he debated with his adversary, he befriended the open-minded, he mesmerised the international community with his charismatic leadership, he let out a stream of oration that was not far from poetry.
Before the people of Egypt can go home as the victors in a Mubarak-free land, a leader shall have to arise. They have given ad-hoc appointment to the International Atomic Energy chief Mohamed El Baradei, but he clearly lacks the magnetism to multiply followers by the hour.
The danger of not having a leader is that a country and its people can delve into an abyss of chaos triggering a frightful law and order situation that may cause more harm than good to a well-intended movement triggered by information technology.
It is the assurance of sustained right of the people to information across the globe, the Wikileaks was just a starter, that gives Mother Earth hope of a new form of governance by which 20 percent shall not rule and/or exploit the other 80 percent. Pareto's Principle is about to be reversed.
Tunisia and Egypt, subject to proper leadership, shall launch a tsunami of people's power that may sweep across several continents, many countries, most vulnerable happily remain the Arab and African nations, several of which are under self-appointed kingdoms and royalties, the term Islam badly abused. The time is nearing for people to wish each other Revolt Mubarak, for the time appears now for hatred for oppressors to transform into unity towards people's liberation.
(R) thedailystar.net 2010