Rally on behalf of the people of Egypt
31Jan2011


where did it take place?
A group of us gathered at the location documented above to express our solidarity with the people of Egypt in the fight to send their dictator packing. Photo by my fellow PhillyIMC person Baba Bob Shipman.

initial gathering
We ultimately got up to about 70 or 80 people. As one can see, it was a pretty cold day out. Very cheerful news from Egypt:

The Egyptian army made clear late Monday afternoon Cairo time that it would not repress peaceful demonstrations. A spokesman read out a statement on television: The military said it was fanning out through the streets to prevent looting and acts of sabotage. It said that the military recognized the legitimacy of the demands of the people and of the demonstrators who are asking for vast political and social adjustments. It said it would “never resort to the use of force against this great people.”

All photos not specifically marked as being Bobs' are mine.

reporters
reporter
another reporter
We got an emailed press release out on the rally a few hours prior to it taking place, so we had a number of reporters show up. In the middle picture, the reporter seems to be saying "Why you taking a picture of me? I'm not part of the story."

From firedoglake:

...today hundreds of thousands if not millions have massed in Cairo’s Tahrir Square for the biggest demonstrations yet against the Mubarak regime. Disparate movements – not just the Muslim Brotherhood but student groups, intellectuals, online activists, and members of the political opposition – have converged to speak with one voice, united against Hosni Mubarak remaining in power.

rowdy
Bob took this photo. The fellow holding the "Stop U.S. Aid" sign and the one reading are both Egyptians who showed up to add their voices to ours. The handsome fellow with the cane is your faithful reporter. Mubarak has done his best to cut Egypt off from communications with the rest of the world. From a young Egyptian woman:

Um, so I wanted to let everyone know in case you don't get any feedback from what's happening tomorrow, and I didn't want anyone to worry about us.

They did this before; the only difference is the last time they did this, I was completely freaked out. I was too scared that they are going to shoot us all and nobody would know about it.

This time, I'm not scared at all. I feel as if, like, I want to ask them 'bring it on!' We are excited. We are happy. We are going to be in Tahrir Square tomorrow.



YouTube video by Bob. [Evening of Feb 1st] Late-breaking news! Hosni Mubarak has offered to "not run again for President." Claims he's too old anyway. Not at all clear if Egyptians consider that sufficient. As to the crowd on the scene:

The reaction in Tahrir Square, where televisions were set up to watch the address, was immediate and dramatic. The chant was “Erhal! Erhal!”, or “Leave! Leave!”

The bottom line is that this will not placate the protesters, who want the Mubarak regime out right now.

another
Another of Bob's pictures. From the Huffington Post:

CAIRO -- More than a quarter-million people flooded Cairo's main square Tuesday in a stunning and jubilant array of young and old, urban poor and middle class professionals, mounting by far the largest protest yet in a week of unrelenting demands for President Hosni Mubarak to leave after nearly 30 years in power.

last
Reporter interviews an Egyptian protester. We know that Al Jazeera has been doing absolutely heroic work in covering the revolution in Egypt. How's the traditional US media been doing? Uh, not good.

It’s kind of funny watching how the media operates- if anything the protests in Egypt are increasing and reaching a critical mass, yet CNN, which had breathless round the clock coverage for the past week, has dropped the story like a prom dress in favor of the imminent MASSIVE ONCE IN A CENTURY SO BAD THEY ARE FREAKING OUT IN CHICAGO snow storm.

*Sigh!* And people wonder why the left blogospher/netroots exist!