The futility of comparing Egypt’s revolutions
By Saied al-Shahat

Amid the futile controversy comparing and contrasting the Egyptian revolutions of January 25, 2011 and June 30, 2013 in a bid to triumph one over the other, allow me to share the following contemplations:

Following the revolution of January 25, we were startled with a futile controversy comparing and contrasting it with that of July 1952. Youth groups who have been naming themselves as leaderships of the January revolution across media channels insisted that the true revolution is that of January the 25th, while that of July 1952 was a mere movement made by the army. One of them even called to abolish celebrating the July Revolution, and replace it with January the 25th. In one TV interview on “Dream TV” channel, prominent history professor Assem al-Desouky was outraged by the insistence of these groups to mock the July revolution who said “We are the true creators of the revolution … no custody is made on it.” Al-Desouky’s response was, “A revolution fastens its prominence when it comes to rule and achieve its goals.” The youthful leader sarcastically laughed as if to say, “no matter what you blablabla.. I won’t listen to you.”

This weird controversy embodied a true crisis of generations also embodies the proud status posed by a sector of youth who were unable to see what they do not want, even if it contradicts correct information. Moreover it reflected severe ignorance about Egyptian history, whereby whoever claimed themselves to be youth leaders of the revolution were unable to realize that the Egyptian national movement is a series of unbreakable rings, each leading to the other. Accordingly, it is impossible to separate any of the pivotal events in Egyptian history since the reign of Mohammed Ali Pacha, or the revolution of 1919, nor the revolution of 1952 or any other national strife made by patriotic icons such as Oraby or Mustafa Kamel.

Amid this controversy, we saw groups who came to take their revenge from former regimes such as  the Muslim Brotherhood, who wanted to take their revenge from the revolution of 1952 and its leader Gamal Abdul Nasser together with other childish groups of the leftists. These attempts came despite the strong presence of Nasser’s photos at Tahrir Square during the 18 days of the January revolution. Amid this turmoil, youth leaders forgot that what makes a revolution is not the introductory scene of the story but the contribution and sincere work to achieve the revolution’s goals.

Standing on this ground, we perceive the ongoing controversy that what happened on the 30th of June was “The Revolution” and that whatever happened in the 25th of January was not,  as a futile controversy leading us to the same big zero point. Both revolutions are episodes of the Egyptians’ strife for their country, because the 30th of June came as a revolutionary wave to correct the path of the 25th of January.

Meanwhile, the fact that Muslim Brotherhood’s contribution in the 25th of January revolution came late does not mean we deny its input. Similarly, the fact that the 30th of June was waved against the rule of Morsi & his Brotherhood in power does not mean we should lightly deal with the MB’s view as a military coup being a clear form  of harassment that belittles the massive will of the people which forced itself in these two master scenes of the Egyptian  history. What we have left, is to achieve the goals called by the people in both revolutions to finally determine their definition.

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