Batel (swearing-in) protest

in «Politics & Human Rights» by mostafa

Warning! This post is very old and may contain information or opinions that are no longer valid or embarrassing.

I passed in front of the usual police and security personnel to enter and join the crowd. I noticed fewer cameras. Or was the number of journalists dissolved by the number of protesters ? I noticed copies of the "Batel" poster. I started searching for other banners I made while searching for Alaa or Mohammed among the crowd, took me a while to find Alaa. I found Noura, Mohammed, Amr and Ahmed. I was introduced to Sandmonkey and Shamoussa for the first time. I couldn't stop bragging about my posters. I felt I don't need to shout any of the slogan, I shouted already but visually!

I smiled. It felt good. Sweet revenge for my camera ?

Then the drums began. Amr came with the idea. Why do bloggers come with terrific ideas ? It synchronised the chants. Thousands started moving, people were ecstatic. Almost a carnival in the streets, not the usual protests. Lots of Helium balloons and a great number of banners. Although to be fair it was something a bit better than football fans cheering for the Ahly or Zamalek. But I felt it was a great festival. As the crowd marched away from the Talaat Harb square and entered Qasr el Nile street, their voices echoed and were amplified.

At this moment I took out my mobile phone and recorded a voice note. You can listen to it. Sorry for the low qualtiy. It is 2 minutes 22 seconds long (1.5 MB).

I looked at the balconies of buildings to see if people are watching. Well, there were not much people looking as usual. I thought may be all of the people joined the crowds. Wishful thinking ?

The march was huge and the drum beats made me feel it was some form of exorcism (Zar). We were driving out the demons and evil forces of corruption and dictatorship. At a moment everyone stood and pointed at Mohamed Zaki Badr's office (a lawyer and son of former minister of interior) and started shouting and pointing at his office "Here is the thief". Thanks to his ass kissing banner featuring Mubarak's photo. Without it he was not going to be noticed.

Mohammed noticed that there were a lot of new faces. Not like earlier protests were you see the same faces surrounded by the usual huge number of journalists. Most of the crowd were in their twenties, this was also new. The BBC says we were two thousand. I think at one moment when we started moving in Kasr El-Nile street we were more.

The crowd reached Mostafa Kamel Square. I noticed the marble placard underneath the statue of Mostafa Kamel, engraved on it his quote; "Whom who relinquishes his nation rights deserves to live degraded forever."

The march continued till it reached the Journalist's syndicate. This time the proof that there were larger number of protestors was the fact that you couldn't put them all on the stairs of the syndicate. The crowd filled the street as well.

I had to go at this moment.