Organizing Strategy Special: The 2011 Egyptian Revolution

program: 
Labor Radio
program date: 
Mon, 02/14/2011


Eyptian Portlander Ahmad Raslan lays out the crescendo of events that brought eight million people into the streets and toppled the Mubarak regime last week:

"The working-class people in many many cities, for the last three days, they started going on strikes.  There was a threat of civil disobedience across the entire Egypt.  And I think that's what made the military at the end tell the president 'We can't afford this.  If working-class people start getting into this from a strike perspective and from a civil disobedience perspective, then we have to end it.' And they ended it."

Stanford Professor of Middle East History Joel Beinin, author of Justice For All: The Struggle for Worker Rights in Egypt, traces the remarkable wave strikes and sit-ins in which two million Egyptian workers have taken part over the last ten years:

"So people learned that you can struggle and you can win and it might be worthwhile.  And once that barrier of fear is broken, then anything is possible, in an authoritarian regime, because it's the fear that the regime depends on for maintaining its power."

Plus, new songs for the revolution from Ramy Essam and Mohamed Mounir.

Photo: Telecommunication workers on strike, February 9, 2011, Hossam el-Hamalawy, http://www.flickr.com/photos/elhamalawy/5431909481/

 

 

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