Egypt – perspectives on Feb. 21, 2011

Information to augment the LSW Egypt page.

From an article in the Norwegian Klassekampen by Peter M. Johansen, several interesting observations regarding the situation in Egypt.

  • Strikes in the public sector, after Tahrir was cleared, spread panic among the new rulers. The new prime minister and former boss of the air force, Ahmed shafiq, warned that salary demands could recatastrophe for the economy.
  • Economic growth was not accompanied by salary growth. Seven percent growth in the years 2006 – 2008 a result of privatising, which went into the pockets of the clique around Mubarak.Even the government’s figures show a growth in poverty from 20% in 2008 to 23.4% in 2009.
  • While EU capital has acheived secure footing in Tunisia, Morocco, and Egypt, export has declined from these countries to the EU. Nonetheless, Fort Europe has closed its doors to ypung North Africans looking for means to support their families.
  • The steering military council has made some smart moves:
  • the military won’t have a presidential candidate
  • Authorities have arrested the former interior minister Habib el-Adly and two other former ministers who are under investigation
  • An election is promised and a new political party, Wasat, was granted legal approval

Johansen wonders where the big canons behind Murbarak are to be found and remembers Lord Palmerston’s statement that that there are no permanent allianses, only temporary interests.

And concludes, noting the Philippine military dictator Marcos was succeeded by Aquino and likewise Suharto in Indonesia was succeeded by Bacharuddin. In both cases change arose but there were many more things which remaind, not the least of which were U.S.A. interests

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