Cairo is under curfew. An eerie silence envelops the city as army personnel patrol the deserted streets. And since Egyptians are not used to being cooped up inside, they are lamenting their inability to enjoy the cooler evening breeze outside their homes. The current joke around Cairo is how an extra million babies will potentially pop out in nine months’ time. But in spite of all this, for once, Egyptians are obeying the law—an unprecedented first. They are staying put happy to be safe and protected.
In the last few days, the Muslim Brotherhood defied the government and army, but in the process defied Egypt, too. As the army evicted the sit-in in Raba Square killing hundreds, the Muslim Brotherhood not only lost its followers but also lost the round and the confidence of Egyptians. In spite of the catastrophe that took place in Rabaa Square, it will be difficult for the MB to regain the trust of Egyptians again, and, consequently, the opportunity to govern Egypt.
Footage of burning churches, of men with rpg’s on their shoulders roaming the streets of Cairo, of the lynching of the officers in Kerdasa Police Station, and of the terror that Egyptians suffered leaves no room for reconciliation, at least for the time being. Egyptians are sure, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that the Muslim Brotherhood is an evil entity.
Let’s go into a few more details here. Why would the Muslim Brotherhood ransack and loot the Malawi Museum? Why torch the Franciscan School; the Faculty of Engineering of Cairo University; Rabaa Mosque; the Arab Contractors’ building, with its three-story blood bank; and 70 churches? Egyptians see all this as vile acts from a group that foregoes Egypt for the sake of power.
The end result of these actions is that the Muslim Brotherhood has burned its bridges. This in itself is a blessing in disguise. Yes, it was horrific while the onslaught was on, but it became living proof of the MB real intentions.
In spite of the mess Egypt seems to be in, Egypt is in a far better state than it has been in the last 13 months. Egypt is in safe hands. And as the Muslim Brotherhood loses steam, Egypt will be getting ready for a better tomorrow.
True, the Muslim Brotherhood will not let go easily, and every now and then, an onslaught on a checkpoint or a church will petrify Egyptians, but they are ready to bear the consequences until the smolder dies down. Terrorist attacks will occur, but Egyptians have lived with such violent occurrences for years. At least now they know where these attacks are coming from and by whom.
But now Egyptians should be ready to ignore all this and get down to work. Today Egypt is at a focal, turning point in its future. This is where it should have been after January 25th. It has an interim government, honest and ready to serve, that has no political aspirations since it is aware that its mandate is a short term—nine months—of hard work. This government is there to serve and put Egypt on the right path.
The sooner Egyptians can turn the page and focus on building Egypt the better the chances of developing their country faster. Egyptians should be aware that it will take a long time to get Egypt back on track; it won’t be easy to build a torn and agonized country from scratch; however, they don’t mind. They are hoping that what comes next will be better. They are awaiting change patiently—not one single demonstration or labour strike has taken place in the last six weeks, other than the political ones led by the Muslim Brotherhood.
The current situation begs all Egyptians, leaders and countrymen, to do their best. This will not be easy; fossilized methods of dealing with crises will take years until the government, the police force, in particular, and the army will be able to handle “incidences” properly and appropriately. Today’s gassing of 38 Muslim Brotherhood detainees will haunt the police force for months on end when the sole responsible person here is an ill-equipped and terrified soldier, one who has not been trained in using tear gas, facing a defiant enemy, or dealing with a mutiny by detained prisoners.
Then the Egyptians themselves must wake up and realize that unless they help themselves no one will be willing to help them. It’s time to work and perform. It’s time to exert every effort possible for them personally and for their country, too.
I have high hopes that this is a new beginning. It’s high time Egyptians enjoy their lives.
Update: An ambush in Sinai today killed 25 unarmed Egyptian officers.