What has happened in Egypt recently has reminded me what used to happen in Spain in the XIXth century, when our revolutions were led by the army with disastrous consequences in the following century. That is what may happen if you get your military used to rule the country: they lose their respect for civil power and, most important, for the people and representative government rules.
These events have shown a western dark face. On one hand, public opinions support the revolution in northern Africa. On the other, western governments are concerned about religious leaders taking power eventually. What we know for a fact is that neither the political motivations nor the leaders are religiously motivated. This movement made efforts in the past to become a secular, more western orientated movement, inspired by events in Iran. Our fears about a religious revolution not only does not help but also promote distrust amongst the Muslim world. For the moment, this coup d'Etat has calmed down our governments but we must never forget that a democracy is more desirable than any “moderate” dictatorship as they are stabler. And we should never forget that coups are not a solution but a bigger problem. Let see what will happen if the military do not give up power or what they will do if their “transition” does not mean to be what they wish.
Strange condition this of many westerners, who are always talking about democracy and human rights (even to conquer countries) when they only mean to like them for themselves as for others is too dangerous. Many journalists think this may be Muslim world's 1989. I am not that optimistic: I think this might be their 1789. Anyway, it is certain that they still have a long way in order to achieve our level of public and, specially, private freedom but if we do not support this first steps it will be even more difficult for them to rid of these both dictatorships and religious power. So that, my best wishes for the revolutionaries. Who knows? Maybe thanks to the Internet these countries will progress sooner than later.
The Guardian, 16th February 2011
The Guardian, 15th February 2011
I apologise for any mistake as English is my second language. Any correction is welcome.