As difficult as it has been for our government to respond to what is going on in Egypt, we the people of the United States have to be in their corner because we have been there. How can we forget that we are born from revolution ourselves? We overthrew a pompous ruler who treated us unfairly, and now the Egyptians have done the same thing. Way to go Egypt, right? Then why does everyone here not seem to be so enthusiastic about it?
President Obama definitely came down on the side of the protesters well before Hosni Mubarak resigned, and that not doubt hastened the winds of change that the dictator must have seen as inevitable. Just as the writing was on the Berlin Wall, so too was it etched on the pyramids of Giza. The power of the people overcame the power and might of a strongman.
We have seen it before throughout history, but perhaps because this is the Middle East people are more worried about where this is ultimately going. People are thinking of the Iranian revolution which brought in something just as bad as it replaced, or perhaps the dismal prospects for democracy in war-ravaged Iraq and Afghanistan. Should we use these places as guides or should we not think that a different direction is in order?
Imagine how the Founding Fathers would see this revolution: would they not support their brethren freedom seekers? If Patrick Henry could say, “Give me liberty or give me death,” should not the Egyptian people seek the same thing? Thanks to the immediacy of the Internet and the spirit and resolve of the Egyptian people, it did not take them years to overthrow their King George: they only needed seventeen days.
None of us can be sure where this is going, and people everywhere from Jerusalem to Islamabad to New York are no doubt thinking the worst, but I have a feeling that they should be thinking the best. An amazing thing has happened in Cairo that we should be applauding vigorously. We can’t not believe in freedom for some and not for all: the Egyptians have just as much right to throw off the yoke of oppression as did the French, Germans, Russians, Iranians, and Americans.
The next steps will be tenuous, but the world should show its support in a myriad of ways to Egyptians. For now they have won the battle, but the goal for them has to be to win the war and avoid falling into chaos. If they can truly embrace democracy, can find a way to create a constitution and a government of and for the people, then they will be on their way and other Middle Eastern dictators and despots should shake in their boots because the dominoes will start to fall.