Post-Jan25 in Minya

Since I am currently unemployed and wasting my time following the thousand or so tweets that appear every hour on my twitter account. I decided to spend time with my father getting paperwork related to several court cases done. These cases happen to be in Minya and they are related to few areas of land he refuses to give up.

The first post-Jan25 change noticeable is that in almost all villages you can see murals and graffiti honouring the martyrs and the youth of the revolution. The other thing, are the remains of illegal building on agricultural land, appearing as heap of broken down fresh white bricks in the middle of the green areas.

In the city of Minya, there are more visible signs of the state we are in. Empty hotels, intricate murals in English and Arabic about freedom, the martyrs and Egypt in all colours, army in front of government buildings, paid ads about the revolution asking people to say no to vandalism and one of the main squares in the city renamed from Midan Suzan Mubarak to Midan Shohada2(martyrs) 25 Jan. Probably renamed by the same governor who earlier renamed half of the city to Suzan Mubarak. Minya is the birthplace of the former first lady.

Otherwise, Minya didn't change much and what we've lived through in the past 3 months was mostly watched on TV. Except perhaps on the Jan 28th, I saw an armoured CSF vehicle with hundreds of tiny dents on it's body from stone throwing. Interestingly, the constant threat of thug attacks was very limited or unfelt.

What was more interesting is spending an afternoon discussing politics with people in the village of Rehana. Here is a quick summary in bullet points:

  1. Village men, some illiterate, understand politics more than people in Cairo expect them to be.
  2. Anyone affiliated to NDP and surprisingly the Muslim Brotherhood now have very little popularity.

يعني أيه: ثورة 25 يناير - أنا وأخويا وابن عمي وابن خالتي على الغريب؟

 أنا وأخويا وابن عمي وابن خالتي على الغريب بانر في التحرير بيقول

يعني أيه ثورة 25 يناير: أنا وأخويا وابن عمي وابن خالتي على الغريب؟

هل يعني كل أسره في مصر ضد بعض؟ ولا تحريض ضد الأجانب وأجنداتهم؟ ولا ده بانر ملوش معنى وخلاص؟

Gadafi's mental state

Gadafi in a tuktuk holding an umbrella

Former head of the World Psychiatric Association professor Ahmed Okasha said today on OTV live that he doesn't have an exact diagnosis for Gadafi as he never examined him but says he should be treated involuntarily for being dangerous on others.

Said his last speeches showed thought disturbance, delusions of persecution 'the uprising being a plot by Osama Bin Laden' and other delusions like people of Libya are rats and all of them receive hallucinogens.

قبل توجيه أصابع الاتهام

وقعت حوادث عنف مؤسفة في اليومين أو الثلاثة الماضية ضد قسيس طعن حتى الموت في أسيوط وأضرمت النيران في منزل مملوكا لأسرة بهائية في سوهاج. تفاصيل الحدثين لاتزال غير معروفة، و لكن بدأت الناس في القاء الأتهامات.

هذه المرة اللوم يلقى على أمن الدولة أو مبارك أو المتبقى من رجاله. على الرغم من ان هذه الفرضية مشروعة ويجب أخذها في الأعتبار، فلا زال لا توجد أي أدلة أو حتى خبر مستفيض يوضح ما حدث. السبب أن الناس تعتقد أن أمن الدولة أو مبارك مسؤولان هو الخوف أنه قد تكون محاولة لأستخدام ورقة الطائفية القذرة للتفرقة بين الناس. وجعل من هم أكثر قلقا من الثورة وهم المسيحين الأقباط يتحولون ضدها.

وعلى حد فهمي فهم قلقون من التفاف غالبية السكان المسلم حول الاخوان المسلمين أو جماعات أخرى تؤيد ايديوليجيات إسلامية وإجبارهم علىها في حياتهم. وهو قلق مشروع جدا ويقلقني أنا أيضا.

امرأة مسيحية و أخرى مسلمة في نقاب بينما كان قسم الشرطة المقابل يطلق النار بالذخيرة الحية على المتظاهرين في 28 يناير. تصوير سارة كار.
سيدة مسيحية و أخرى مسلمة في نقاب بينما كان قسم الشرطة المقابل يطلق النار بالذخيرة الحية على المتظاهرين في 28 يناير. تصوير سارة كار.

في الأسابيع القليلة الماضية المصريين من مختلف الأديان أظهروا عروضا لا يمكن تخيلها من التعاطف تجاه بعضهم البعض. وقف المسلمون خارج الكنائس ليحموها خلال عيد الميلاد والمسحيين وقفوا يحمون المسلمين أثناء صلاتهم في ميدان التحرير. الكل كان ضد الارهاب والطغاين.

أحداث العنف تلك تأجج المشاعر.وأنا على يقين من أن كل من الارهاب والطغيان يقفا عاجزان أمام شعب يقف متحد بصلابة. ولكن في كثير من الأحيان يبالغ الاعلام في اظهار تلك الوحدة. وذلك ليتستر على مشاكل إجتماعية حقيقية ومهمة بين المسيحيين والمسلميين. وليست بالضرورة كلها عنف.

Before pointing fingers

Two deplorable acts of violence occurred in the past two or three days against a priest who was stabbed to death in Assiut and a house owned by a Bahaai family was set alight in Sohag. The details of both events are still not known, yet people started to point blame.

Translation of a video testimony of a protester shot by the police on the 28th of January in Cairo

This a very quick translation of this video testimony that was sent to me. I think it is very important and moving.

The video is slightly graphic near the end.

My name is Mohammed el-Faramawy

I joined the marches on the Friday of Anger on the 28th of January. I had a first aid bag on my back, I took it with me to Tahrir square to treat the injured, at around 1 the army entered.

We were near the Shoura council and the army asked us to let a group of anti-riot policemen, they told us the policemen were afraid and we should let them pass so they can join other policemen near the ministry of interior so they can retreat and go back home as a group.

We made a cordon, so they can pass safely. They passed while we greeted them. As soon as they reached the other end, their police officer gave them ammunition and order them to shoot us in the back. They started shooting at everyone.

I ran, I ran with a colleagues and hid in Shoura council. We entered and security told us to hide in there and not to be afraid but from across the other end of the council someone related to the ministry of interior pointed his gun and told us to run away right now and leave or he will start shooting. We told him that they are shooting live ammunition and if we go back we will be shot.

He said I'll kill you and started shooting. We all ran away.
While running a police officer stopped us and told us to raise our arms and give him our backs. He had a shot gun. Suddenly, while giving him our backs I saw the man in front of me with a hole in his back and he dropped down dead in front of. He was martyred.

Afterwards, I tried to run away. A bullet entered my left hip. I fell to the ground and all my fellow protesters fell on top of me, exactly like dominoes or chickens falling on top of each others.