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O Mubarak, where art thou?

Monday, January 14, 2013 12:17 PM 
Saif Eldin Hamdan - Aswat Masriya's Editor in Chief
Any views expressed in this piece are those of the author and not of Aswat Masriya.

Saif Eldin Hamdan

In light of the current events and political scene in Egypt, a colleague has gotten used to teasing me every morning by jokingly greeting me saying, "O Mubarak, where art thou!" where I respond by threatening to report or hit him.

While him and I are only joking, serious voices longing for Hosni Mubarak are on the rise in Egypt's streets, citing the struggling economy, lack of security and looming chaos.

The truth is, under the toppled president, there was more order, and the economy was more stable (in one way or another); everything was controlled by semi-fixed regulations where the powerful police apparatus was so ingrained in every corner and thus alive and active in every detail.

The truth is, Mubarak's grip on the country was a lot tighter than the grip that the current regime has.

The truth is, outrageous calls to demolish ancient monuments like the Pyramids and the Sphinx have erupted, among others that call for forbidding the illiterate from voting.  

It is also true that a political monster, that should not be described as "political" at all, has come along to spread ugliness and exploit the naivety of the people to lead them to ill fates.

The ousting of Mubarak revealed grave defects in Egyptian politics, reminding one of how the toppled president used to warn Western leaders that if he were to step down, chaos would be the only alternative.

Yes, chaos... the chaos that he knows quite well, for it is a result of his regime.

Mubarak’s regime did not allow healthy democratic conditions as not to threaten its survival.

That is the real crime that was committed against the Egyptian people and that he should be persecuted for. It is a political crime, not the criminal one that I could not believe my ears when I heard it being announced as the only crime the former autocrat committed. Especially when the accusation is that he was "indirectly responsible" for failing to halt the shedding of blood during the uprising that toppled him.

During his 30 years of rule, Mubarak did not allow Egyptians to live under democratic governance; he did not establish the foundation that Egypt desperately needed.

Mubarak did not strive to eradicate illiteracy or raise awareness of rights. He only built institutions to serve him and his aides, paving the way for profiteering and corrupt investment.

Mubarak embezzled Egypt's future to his benefit, so that the Middle East's largest country either remains "Mubarak's Egypt" or sinks into chaos and political unrest with forces, who were not raised in a democratic environment, fighting.

Mubarak deliberately kept a distance between him and Egypt, shaping policies that only prolonged the reign that he treated as a personal possession of his aides and himself.

Prosecutors who are currently trying Mubarak on criminal charges must know that they will not find evidence of his violations; Mubarak was the law.

He did not need to violate the law because he was it, in the same sense Louis XIV once said "L'État, c'est moi" or "I am the state".

The upheaval that erupted following Mubrak's ouster was plotted by him and his regime and is being orchestrated by them.

The scene must change to let the Egyptians rule themselves; give power to the people.

As for the impatient and short-sighted who are longing for Mubarak's days,

Shame on you... shame on you... shame on you.

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