Croatia’s Nazi Orientation Still Continues

July 25, 2013

A piece of news in BalkanInsight produced a déja vu impression on me. A quote:

A memorial plaque honouring World War II concentration camp victims who died on the Croatian island of Pag has been vandalised again…The attack came just weeks after the plaque was replaced at a commemoration in late June for the victims of the WWII concentration camp complex which included Slana and Metajna on Pag and Jadovno on the nearby Croatian mainland…It was run by the Ustasha authorities who ruled part of the former Yugoslavia during WWII in alliance with Mussolini’s Italy and Hitler’s Nazi Germany. The plaque was installed by Coordination of Jewish Municipalities, the Jadovno 1941 Association, the League of Anti- Fascist Veterans and the Serb National Council in Croatia.

Croatian Nazi Camp Slano on the island of Pag was established for Serbian men and Metajna for Serbian women and children. According to Italian documents and survivors’ testimonies a very large number of Serbian people have been murdered and thrown into the sea. According to the research conducted so far on the complex of Ustasha camps “Jadovno – Gospić 1941”, which also include the island of Pag, no fewer than 40,123 victims were murdered, 38,010 Serbs, 1999 Jews and the rest were ideological opponents of the Independent State of Croatia.

OK – this is only one demolized memorial, similar hooliganism hapens everywhere? Unfortunatelly however in my opinion alarming is that this last event is not an isolated act. I would compare it to the funeral given to Dinko Sakic on Summer 2008. As Sakic was a head of a WWII Jasenovac concentration camp in Zagreb, this ceremony insulted the memory of those killed in the camp run by Croatia’s Nazi-allied Ustasha regime. The Jasenovac commander and murderer was dressed in an Ustasha uniform, the priest who served at the funeral said that Sakic was a model for all Croats. (More about this in my article “Nazi’s funeral shadows Croatia’s past” ).

Memorial Masses for WWII Croatian Mass Murderer Ante Pavelić – the original Butcher of the Balkans – in Zagreb and Split was one act describing very alarming trend to (over)emphasizing Croatia’s Nazi past. Pavelić as the Fascist Head of state of the Nazi puppet government of the “Independent State of Croatia” (NDH) bears direct responsibility for the mass murder of hundreds of thousands of Serbs, tens of thousands of Jews, and numerous Roma. The German Nazis and the Italian Fascist regimes created a puppet State run by the local fascist movement, the Ustashe, headed by Pavelic. He died in Franco’s Spain in 1959 having fled Croatia through the Vatican “rat lines” at the end of the war. To say it politely the ceremonies might indicate that residents in Croatia are still more interested in establishing their national identity than in looking towards Europe. Unfortunately from my point of view the question is more serious.

While Ante Pavelic is being officially rehabilitated in Croatia also streets and public buildings are being named after the architects of the Holocaust.. In addition it should be no surprise that for years the best seller in Croatia has been new edition of “Mein Kampf”- faithful reproduction of the original text by that great European leader, benefactor of Croatian nationalism and leader of the Third Reich, Adolf Hitler. The other bestsellers have been the anti-Semitic classic, “The Protocols of the Elders of Zion” and memories of Pavelic. Proving the existence of a ready audience for fascist thought in Croatia, Mein Kampf was published and sold in the year of 1999 – in the number more than 600 copies in hardback within days at the remarkable price of 500 kuna (75 dollars each) – roughly equivalent to a week’s average salary there.

Srbosjek (knife) used in Croatia by the Ustaše for the quick slaughter of inmates, notably in the Jasenovac concentration camp

Public monuments honoring Ustashe regime while numerous monuments erected in honour of the Partisans as well those erected in honour of civilian victims of war have been damaged or destroyed throughout the country. A square in the central part of Zagreb had been named the “Square of the victims of fascism” because during World War II, over sixteen thousand people had been deported via the square to concentration camps. In the early 1990s, this square was renamed to “Square of great Croats”. This decision was later reverted.

Croatia has no laws against historical revisionism and holocaust denial, nor does it regard denazification as a major priority. Unlike Germany and Austria, Croatia places no restrictions on the exhibition of Nazi and Ustaše symbols. In 2003, an attempt was made to amend the Croatian penal code by adding articles prohibiting the public display of Nazi symbols, the propagation of Nazi ideology, historical revisionism and holocaust denial, but this attempt was prevented by the Croatian constitutional court.

The late Croatian pro-Ustashe Nazi and Hitler-loving, Holocaust-denying antisemitic president, Franjo Tudjman, wrote in his 1988 Croatian version of Hitler’s Mein Kampf, entitled: “Wastelands of Historical Truth” the following:

Genocidal violence is a natural phenomenon in harmony with the societal and mythologically Divine nature. Genocide is not only permitted it is also recommended, even commanded by the Word of the Almighty, whenever it is useful for the survival or the restoration of the earthly kingdom of the chosen nation, or for the preservation and spreading of its one and only correct faith”.

Also in Croatia, August 4 is celebrated as a Victory Day and state authorities as well private citizens are celebrating the military operation carried out by forces from Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina to retake Krajina with operation ”Storm”, which might be the biggest ethnic cleansing act during Balkan Wars. Alice Mahon the Labour MP visited former Serb villages in the Krajina in 1999 and said: “I can only conclude that the Croatian government is aiming for an ethnically pure state. The international community is tolerating these openly racist policies.” (More in Krajina – Victory with Ethnic Cleansing  and Operation Storm – forgotten pogrom  )

Serbia and the former Yugoslavia, in an exact reprise of the fascist 1940s, have been systematically attacked and dismembered by Germany and Austria since the 1980s. Germany joined the Vatican in illegally recognising Croatia in 1991 which led to that State effectively declaring war on Yugoslavia and on Serbs in Croatia. In this the Croats had the full support of Germany and the Vatican – whose funds, liberally deployed among American PR firms helped to spread pro-Croatia propaganda. Todayrock concerts with neo-nazi symbols etc are indicating wide popular acceptance to display racism, anti-Semitism, anti-Serbian acts and xenophobia in Croatia. Neo-Nazism has still good cooperation with church and e.g Wiesenthal Center has called for immediate dismissal of Director of Croatian Episcopal Archives who denies holocaust crimes at Jasenovac. (More Jasenovac in Jasenovac – Holocaust promoted by Vatican )

What’s striking in Croatia that Church and far right neo-Nazi political groups have succeeded in engaging large crowds of fairly young people, most of whom were born at least forty years after the end of the Second World War. They come out dressed in uniforms with flags and crests of the quisling state which claimed at least half a million lives in less than five years of it’s existence. (See more e.g at Propagandistmag )

Constituent elements of the Croatian extreme right are an emphasis on the Ustasha movement during the Second World War, the creation of a strong state with an authoritarian character, territorial expansion of Croatia to its ethnic borders, especially vis-à-vis the Serbs, and a messianic mission of the Croatian nation as a bulwark of catholic Christianity.Radicalization of the public sphere is most readily visible among the younger generation, particularly in the context of football hooliganism. (Read more: Vedran OBUCINA| Right-Wing Extremism In Croatia, the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung,2012)

This happening in a country now in EU unfortunately something about todays EU itself where far-right views, neo-Nazism and xenophobia have been gaining ground during last decade. One should not forget old war crimes and especially they should not be honoured in the way like now in Croatia.

“The gigantic campaign to brainwash America by our media against the Serbian people is just incredible, with its daily dose of one-sided information and outright lies…What is today’s reality? The murderers of Jews, Serbs and Gypsies are back (in Croatia) from the US, Canada, Argentina where they fled after World War II. The Serbs fought the Nazis, and paid a terrible price for standing at the side of the allies against Hitler. Humanity owes them a debt of gratitude.” And how have the Serbs been repaid? What was their reward for their loyalty? Seventy-eight days of unmerciful US-led NATO bombing and continued vilification by the US media. (John Ranz, Chairman of Survivors of Buchenwald Concentration Camp, USA)

*   *   *

P.S: Btw from 23 Jul 2013 Nazi-hunters are to launch a renewed campaign to track down former death camp guards and others involved in the Holocaust before the last remaining perpetrators of Second World War crimes die. 



Resumption Of Israeli-Palestinian Peace Talks

July 21, 2013

<img source="http://t1.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSLHPjqrrmKitfMzTIeUfoIZkim6sHG2DWE2cCzuaT2NXztmjpVNA" alt="Israel and Palestine map."</img>Some hope to break the Israeli-Palestinian vicious circle emerged when it was announced about resumption of peace talks . Dr. Saeb Erekat, the Palestinian chief negotiator, will travel to Washington next week to meet Israeli Justice Minister Tzipi Livni, for what is supposed to be direct negotiations after five years of stagnation. Both representatives participated formal negotiations in 2008 when the final agreement almost was reached.

New talks are possible due active and skilled shuttle diplomacy implemented by US Secretary of State John Kerry, who succeeded where both his predecessor Hillary Clinton and his superior, President Barack Obama, failed. However this is only start of the process and before final status talks there is need to agree over the foundations of the negotiations themselves, how to start, how and when to finish. A lot of obstacles is waiting, for example involvement of Hamas and Gaza to negotiations. Also from its part European Union tries to sabotage negotiations with its groping foreign policy and its foolish directives.

Kerry’s shuttle diplomacy

For years the Palestinian Authority (PA) has refused to negotiate unless some preconditions are accepted. The main demands before peace talks have been that the border of the future Palestinian state would be along lines that existed before the 1967 Six-Day War and that Israel halts all construction in West Bank settlements. Israel has refused, saying negotiations should resume without conditions.

On his sixth trip to the Middle East in five months as America’s top diplomat, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, continued his effort to restart Israeli-Palestinian peace talks that floundered and collapsed in 2008. And on 19th July 2013 Kerry was able to announce that Israel and the Palestinians will meet end of July 2013 in Washington to finalize an agreement on relaunching peace negotiations for the first time in five years.

According to media reports, but not confirmed by Secretary Kerry, Israel has agreed a package of incentives for the Palestinians – including restraint in settlement building, the gradual release of prisoner serving long sentences for terror offenses, and economic projects in the West Bank – whilst the Palestinians are expected to suspend unilateral efforts to seek recognition in international bodies.

<img source="https://i1.wp.com/mfa.gov.il/mfa_Graphics/content/accumulator_default_img.jpg" alt="Israel government sign."</img>After Kerry’s announcement on the Resumption of the Diplomatic Process PM Netanyahu released the following statement: “With the resumption of the diplomatic process, we are faced with two main goals: Preventing the creation of a bi-national state between the Mediterranean Sea and the Jordan River that would endanger the future of the Jewish state and preventing the establishment of an additional Iranian-sponsored terrorist state on Israel’s borders, which would endanger us no less.”

The carrots

Kerry has highlighted a 2002 offer by the 22-nation Arab League to make peace with Israel in return for a Palestinian state broadly inside borders that existed before Israel occupied the West Bank, Gaza Strip and East Jerusalem in 1967. At the 2002 Arab League Initiative, which proposed full Arab recognition of Israel in exchange for a series of conditions, including the return of Palestinian refugees to what is now Israel. However, in May this year, a high level Arab League delegation, after meeting with Kerry, agreed to change the language of the Arab Peace Initiative from its rigid demand for a Palestinian state on the 1967 lines to accepting “comparable,” mutually agreed and “minor” land swaps.

Related to settlements it has claimed that they kill the two-state solution but this from my perspective is not obstacle after the now revised Arab League Initiative. 80% of the settlers live in large blocs close to the Green Line. To connect those blocs up to Little Israel will require a land swap of about 6%. That is doable. This has been almost accepted in previous talks at Camp David and Annapolis as well in Olmert’s proposal at last final status negotiations 2008. While 20% of the settlers live outside these green line blocs, these settlements will not be part of Israel proper, after a proposed deal so some 20-30,000 households will have to be absorbed back into Israel and also this is doable.

Kerry has offered the Palestinians a package of economic incentives to restart the talks.According to the secret Kerry plan (not confirmed anywhere) as one of these concessions, Kerry wants Israel to permit the Palestinians to build in Jericho for their prospective state an international airport for direct civilian flights to and from America and Europe. Those flights would cross Israeli air space and be coordinated with Israeli flight control authorities. Kerry envisages the transformation of the entire Jericho region north of the Dead Sea and near the Jordanian border into a busy hub for galvanizing the economy of the future Palestinian state. He wants Israel to hand over to the Palestinians the Kalia region on the northern shore of the Dead Sea. Kibbutz Kalia, albeit part of sovereign Israel from its inception in 1948, is nonetheless one of the assets Kerry wants Israel to cede to the Palestinians. Israeli concessions would not end at the northern Dead Sea coast, according to the secret Kerry plan; it would be just the first in a series of land and sovereignty handover granted the Palestinians in trilateral negotiations among Israel, the Palestinians and the United States. The Palestinians would also be awarded by the process a three-year economic reconstruction program for boosting their Gross National Product by 50 percent and slashing unemployment from 21 to 8 percent.

The Olmert proposal

“Reaching an agreement is possible; it is realistic, but you need to want it and you need to pray that the leadership will want it.” (Ehud Olmert)

<img source="https://arirusila.files.wordpress.com/2013/03/olmertpage002.png" alt="Olmert proposal for Israeli-Palestinian future borders."</img>

The last time Israelis and Palestinians conducted formal final status talks was under former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert. But his successor PM Netanyahu has formally rejected the proposals that Olmert made at the time to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.

New negotiations are not starting from scratch, both Livni and Erekat have many times been looking the same almost agreed map according which Israel would annex 6.3% of the area of the West Bank, a move which would enable around 75% of the population of Jewish West Bank settlements to remain in their homes. In return for this, land would be transferred to the Palestinians equivalent to 5.8% of the area of the West Bank. In addition, a ‘safe passage’ route linking Hebron in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip would be established. Besides border issue also other core questions – such as future arrangements in Jerusalem and the refugee issue – were earlier almost solved. More about earlier negotiations in PaliLeaks, land swaps and desperate search of peace .

<img source="https://i0.wp.com/scm-l3.technorati.com/13/03/17/75487/Olmertpage003.png" alt="Olmert proposal for future borders of Jerusalem, map."</img>

EU trying to sabotage peace negotiations

While U.S. has implemented their active shuttle diplomacy in the front line the EU’s rearguard are trying to put obstacles for peace process. Just when peace diplomacy on the ground was at crucial point the EU published its directive which mandates that “all agreements between the State of Israel and the EU must unequivocally and explicitly indicate their inapplicability to the territories occupied by Israel in 1967.” The EU explained that the goal of the directive was to draw a solid line between the state of Israel and the “occupied territories,” especially over issues that concern EU cooperation.

In Jerusalem, officials said that the EU directive essentially determines that – given the absence of an agreement signed between Israel and the Palestinians – 100 percent of the territory in Judea and Samaria belong de facto to the Palestinians.

Trade with the EU in 2012 amounted to $36.6 billion. Israel imported $22.4 billion worth of goods from the EU that same year. Also the Palestinians were not so pleased as the Arab side is also going to be harmed by this EU directive; Palestinian laborers are going to lose their livelihoods as a result of the decision to exclude settlement enterprises from future cooperative agreements. A generous portion of the labor in Judea and Samaria is Palestinian and for example many joint Israeli-Palestinian agricultural projects situated in West Bank are funded by members of the EU and now in danger.

According to a report in Ma’ariv, Israel has threatened to pull out of the EU’s massive science and technology project, “Horizon 2020″. Israel is the only non-European full partner in the project, and is supposed to invest 600 million Euro (785 million US dollars) in the project over 7 years. Besides the financial hit the EU project would take as a result, the move would be a serious blow to the project’s prestige and success. Israel is a central partner in the projects that Horizon 2020 undertakes, and part of these project’s successes are dependent on Israeli human resources and research.

EU wishing to be included in the peace process should change their directive for example expressing that the territories of east Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria and the Golan Heights are in dispute and their fate will be determined through direct negotiations.

<img source="https://arirusila.files.wordpress.com/2011/06/unslogans.jpg?w=296&h=314" alt="UN slogans."</img>

These principles might describe EU too?

Gaza question

In my opinion question about Gaza should be solved at early stage during coming negotiations. Gaza’s isolation was imposed originally to delegitimize and undermine Hamas’ leadership. Palestinian Authority or better say Fatah was hoping to produce positive economic development in the West Bank which could lead Gazans to overturn Hamas rule.The opposite came true as Hamas’ control grew tighter. Though Israel and Egypt allow limited imports into Gaza, the economy of Gaza largely relies on illicit trade that flourishes via an alternative “tunnel economy.” Hamas enriches itself at the expense of the Palestinian Authority (PA) by collecting tolls from tunnel operators and import taxes on goods brought into Gaza. This second economy increases ordinary Gazans’ reliance on Hamas rule, which most would prefer to see end. Making peace deal only between Israel and the PA does not solve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and ignoring Gaza further incentives Hamas to oppose peace with Israel and any deal its Palestinian adversaries conclude.

A new reintegration strategy is needed instead of isolation, it should reconnect Gaza with the West Bank to lessen Hamas’ grip on Gaza. To be effective at least following components should be included to the new strategy for Gaza:

1) Economic component encouraging Israel and the PA to reestablish trade links with Gaza. Israel should expand the amount of trade allowed from its territory, and also reopen trade from the West Bank. Gazans should be allowed to open an export corridor through Israel. Allowing goods to flow between Gaza and the West Bank will change Gaza’s economy away from illicit trade with Egypt and strengthen the moderate middle class

2) Social component encouraging Israel and the PA to reestablish the suspended transit corridor for Palestinians to travel between the West Bank and Gaza.Allowing Gazans to visit the West Bank and vice versa will help restore the social bonds and build national consciousness required for statehood.prepare Palestinian institutions for elections and to empower PA for peace deal..

3) Political component preparing the PA for Palestinian national elections.The Palestinians have not held national elections since 2006, and governing institutions required for statehood are losing legitimacy as a result.

Implementation of this new approach could be made with help of international advisory group composed of those countries already friendly with Hamas (Turkey, Qatar, and Egypt), plus countries (Jordan, the United Arab Emirates, and Saudi Arabia) more likely to take into account the Fatah-dominated PA’s views. Sure this policy change poses risk, however the more certain danger is in perpetuating a status quo that benefits Hamas.

My conclusion

In Israel big part of population thinks that Israel as strong Jewish state can best defense their interests and hard line government to implement their wish. Palestinian leadership is defending rights of local Muslim population, refugees and vision of Palestine state. Hard line Palestine groups – with remarkable popular support – is implementing their vision with terrorist acts. In outside power centres especially in Anglo-Saxon world both Israeli and Palestinian interest groups are putting their pressure to western capitals. Many outsiders admit that both sides have good base for their claims.

Now I am more optimist than pessimist with this new round of talks. The status quo is too expensive situation both economically and politically for both Israel and Palestine. The deal would allow both parties to look forwards – the deal would release resources for economic development and for building capacities in society. There is also regional need to solve Israeli-Palestinian conflict as other more serious conflicts are spreading in the (Great) Middle East

If negotiations however again fail so from my perspective Israel could concentrate to talk solution with Egypt and Jordan. I have propagated long for “three-state” approach, where Gaza is returned to Egyptian control and the West Bank in some configuration reverts to Jordanian sovereignty. From my point of view this solution is both pragmatic and doable. (More in The Three-State Option could solve Gaza Conflict )


Some of my related articles:


Morsi Out, Military In, Can Democracy Slip Too In Egypt

July 4, 2013

When Mubarak was ousted in Spring 2011 I concluded following scenario in my article Days of Rage on the Arab street : Egypt’s society is diverse enough to withstand a despotic theocracy and if in doubt so the army is the final guarantor.”

Now it seems to came true as Egyptian military chief Gen. Abdel Fattah al-Sisi announced July 3 that the country’s president, Mohammed Morsi, had been removed from office in the wake of popular unrest. In a short media statement, al-Sisi, who was flanked by the three armed services chiefs, opposition leaders, the sheikh of al-Azhar Mosque and the pope of the Coptic Church, announced that Adly Mansour, chief justice of the Constitutional Court, has replaced Morsi as interim president. He also announced that the constitution had been suspended. Mansour’s appointment is notable in that one of the key demands of the Tamarod protest movement was that he become president. The provisional government will be holding fresh parliamentary and presidential elections.

Army troops backed by armor and including commandos have deployed across much of the Egyptian capital, surrounding protests by the president’s supporters, and at key facilities and major intersections. But Morsi’s backers denounced the army’s intervention as a “coup”. At least 16 people, mostly supporters of the president, were killed and about 200 wounded when gunmen opened fire on pro-Morsi demonstrators at Cairo University campus. The Muslim Brotherhood accused uniformed police of the shooting. The Interior Ministry said it was investigating. Al Jazeera reports that several members of the Muslim Brotherhood have reportedly been arrested.
Deposed Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi said on the official Facebook page of the presidency that the July 3 announcement made by military amounts to a coup and that he rejects it, Al-Ahram reported. Egypt’s Salafist al-Nour Party announced its support for the military’s “roadmap” for the country’s political future and transition to new presidential elections, Al Arabiya reported July 3.

Door is open for reforms or even revolution as the coup and demonstrators might force elections in which ElBaradei or someone like him could be elected and Egypt might proceed on the path of democracy.

Final hours

<img source="http://t0.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcQStlZ6MrIK-FUntE_XuhryDZZ6F7ir5cyOif15ag7PMgOQufCR" alt="Islam will dominate the world poster."</img>In an emotional, rambling midnight television address before ultimatum deadline, the president said he was democratically elected and would stay in office to uphold the constitutional order. Morsi acknowledged having made mistakes and said he was still willing to form a national unity government ahead of parliamentary elections and let a new parliament amend the constitution. But he offered no new initiative and rejected calls to step aside, saying it was his sacred duty to uphold legitimacy – a word he repeated dozens of times. The president accused remnants of Mubarak’s former regime and corrupt big money families of seeking to restore their privileges and lead the country into a dark tunnel. The official spokesman of his Muslim Brotherhood movement said his supporters were willing to become martyrs to defend Morsi.”We will not allow the will of the Egyptian people to be bullied again by the military machine.”
Liberal opposition leaders, who have vowed not to negotiate with Morsi since the ultimatum was issued, immediately denounced his refusal to go as a declaration of “civil war”. The opposition Dustour (constitution) party led former U.N. nuclear agency chief Mohamed ElBaradei appealed for military intervention to save Egyptian lives, saying Morsi’s speech showed he had “lost his mind” and incited bloodshed. “We ask the army to protect the souls of Egyptians after Morsi lost his mind and incited bloodshed of Egyptians,” the Dustour Party said in a statement.

The youth movement that organised the mass protests urged the Republican Guard to arrest Morsi immediately and present him for trial.

April 6 movement shows the way again

<img source="https://i2.wp.com/upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/9/99/April_6_Youth_Movement.jpg" alt="Egypt's April 6 youth movement flag."</img>I have been following events in Egypt mostly in April 6 movement’s facebook group. The movement was founded in 2008 and e.g New York Times has identified the movement as the political Facebook group in Egypt with the most dynamic debates. As of January 2009, it had 70,000 predominantly young and educated members. The April 6 Youth Movement helped organize the protests in 2011 that eventually toppled fomer dictator Mubarak out from power. Some signs that new wide revolts are coming was clear latest early this Spring.

April 6 founder, Ahmed Maher, had announced his support for the Islamist president, against his rival who was associated with the former regime, during last year’s presidential election. However on March 25, 2013 The movement compared a speech given by Mursi a day earlier to ones given by the former regime, describing it as “disappointing, especially from a leader who had claimed to have come to fulfill the goals of the uprising.” (Source: Aswat Masriya )

April 6 movement called for a “rage day” against President Mohamed Morsi on the fifth anniversary of its establishment. “The time has come to say to Mursi, ‘enough, you have broken all your promises; there are no programs to reform anything and every day we see destruction in Egypt. April 6, 2013, will be a day of anger; wait for us. Our strength is in our peaceful methods”.

On June 15th 2013 April 6 movement,assured that the movement began in preparing the groups around the state , to go down on June 30, explaining that the demonstrations will have one and clear demand ,early presidential elections after the failure of the president to fulfill any promise of his campaign promises and failing to achieve stability and prosperity,which he and his clan promised , beside breaking all the promises he promised to the National Front, which supported him in the presidential elections.

The opposition National Salvation Front, an umbrella group of liberal, secular and leftist parties, and the “Tamarud – Rebel!” youth movement leading the street protests have both nominated ElBaradei to negotiate with army leaders on a post-Morsi transition.

Tamarod-Rebel

“We ask the army to intervene to prevent the bloodshed of the Egyptian people …This is a people’s coup against a dictator and tyrant president and the army of the Egyptian people has to respond to the people’s demands and act upon them.” (Mahmoud Badr/ Tamarud)

Tamarod is a new grassroots protest movement in Egypt that has been behind the recent nationwide protests against President Mohammed Morsi, a year after he took office. The group, whose name means “rebel” or better rebellion in Arabic, Tamarod was founded in late April 2013 by members of the Egyptian Movement for Change – better known by its slogan Kefaya (Enough) and it claims it has collected more than 22 million signatures for a petition demanding Mr Morsi step down and allow fresh presidential elections to be held. Mainstream opposition groups soon put their weight behind the campaign, providing logistical support and office space. Exactly Tamarod gave the president an ultimatum to resign by 17:00 (15:00 GMT) on Tuesday or face a campaign of “complete civil disobedience”. It urged “state institutions including the army, the police and the judiciary, to clearly side with the popular will as represented by the crowds”.

Rebel Campaign (For the destitution of Mohamed Mursi Al Ayat)

  • We reject you … Because Security has not been recovered so far
  • We reject you… Because the deprived one has still no place to fit
  • We reject you … Because we are still begging loans from the outside
  • We reject you … Because no justice has been brought to the martyrs
  • We reject you. .. Because no dignity was left neither for me nor for my country
  • We reject you… Because the economy has collapsed, and depends only on begging
  • We reject you… Because Egypt is still following the footsteps of the USA

Since the arrival of Mohamed Mursi to power, the average citizen still has the feeling that nothing has been achieved so far from the revolution goals which were life in dignity, freedom, social justice and national independence. Mursi was a total failure in achieving every single goal, no security has been reestablished and no social security realized, thus and gave clear proof that he is not fit for the governance of such a country as Egypt.

The National Salvation Front

The National Salvation Front (NSF) is an opposition coalition formed amid the recent political crisis which has engulfed Egypt. It has successfully brought together the country’s fractious and divided opposition factions, who are now united in their resistance and rejection of what they see as a power grab by the president and his Islamist allies.

On 24 November 2012, a number of political parties and leading figures formed a coalition to force the president to rescind his decree; form a new, more representative constituent assembly; and issue a transitional justice law that guaranteed fair retrials for those responsible for the deaths of protesters during the uprising that ousted Hosni Mubarak. The NSF includes a wide range of liberal, secular and leftist groups, such as the Egyptian Popular Current, al-Dustour, al-Tajammu, Free Egyptians, New Wafd, Democratic Front, the Egyptian Social Democratic Party, Nasserist Democratic Party and the Conference Party. The National Front for Salvation of the Revolution has more than 35 groups involved overall

Its three most prominent leaders are Mohammed ElBaradei, the former head of the UN’s International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA); Amr Moussa, the former secretary general of the Arab League; and Hamdeen Sabahi, a Nasserist politician who came third in the presidential election.

Future road map (according opposition)

Egypt’s April 6 Youth Movement held a press conference on Tuesday 2nd July 2013 to announce their six-step political map leading to early presidential elections.

FUTURE ROAD MAP

In order to achieve the requests of the Egyptians gathering in a magnificent popular scene in the streets and squares of Egypt, and demanding the organization of an early presidential election, the 6th April Youth Movement asks everyone to assume their responsibilities toward the country and to work together for the realization of the justified popular demands in this historic moment according the following road map:

First:

Tomorrow before 15:00, Morsi shall declare the following:

1. The suspension of the current constitution;

2. The dissolution of the Shoura Council (the Second Chamber of the Egyptian Parliament);

3. The transfer of powers to the Head of the Constitutional court.

Second:

A committee of the highest caliber 20 Constitutional Jurists and Professors of Law in the Egyptian universities shall be established. It revises, assesses and modifies the constitution. The political currents shall provide the committee with their proposals of the articles requested to be modified. The constitution shall be presented to the people for a universal suffrage.

Third:

The head of the constitutional court shall set, within one week of assuming the presidential role, the date for starting the presidential elections candidacy period according to March referendum 2012 conditions, within a maximum of two weeks. The elections and its results shall be held within a maximum period of three months from assuming the role.

Fourth:

Establishing of a National Salvation Government of No-Party-Based Technocrats. All political currents shall propose names for the Prime Minister as well as for three Deputies with well defined duties. The head of the Constitutional Court shall select among the proposed names after consultation with the political currents. The nominated person shall establish the government with the commitment to nominate the three deputies among the names proposed ex-ante.

Fifth:

Establishing a council for the protection of the revolution including all the political currents and youth without excluding anyone. Its duty is to direct the State Public Policy for a period of three months and till the election of the magistrate councils, achieve a comprehensive national conciliation between all the parties and national currents without marginalization or exclusion in order to start a new chapter immuned against internal divisions and polarization of the nation, while activating a law for transitional justice upon which everyone shall agree.

Sixth:

The Parliamentary elections shall be held within a period of six months-one year from the date in which the Head of the Constitutional Court assumes power.

6th April Youth

Patriotism ahead of Politics
Principle ahead of Interests

<img source="https://i2.wp.com/sphotos-a.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-prn2/q71/971318_10152005627868294_578279646_n.jpg" alt="Egypt coup 2013, opposition demands ."</img>

My view

After the first successful thrust every revolution differentiates into political and class currents. This is the moment of greatest danger. The moment when the future of the revolution is decided.” (John Rees)

In my article Egypt at crossroads – theocracy, democracy or something between I highlighted two possible scenarios:

Egypt has came to a crossroads – Egyptians may choose to embrace the model of a secular reformist state with a prominent role for the military as Turkey has done; there is a second possibility that the Islamists exploit the influence to gradually take the country into a reverse direction – not towards modernity and reform but backward, nearest example could be Iran.

In my article Days of Rage on the Arab street I was a bit skeptical about possibilities for real revolution:

Egypt’s senior generals are part of the ruling establishment and army is up to its helmets in big business: shopping centers, tourism, property, hotels, steel, telecoms. A real revolution would require a Marxist revolutionary leadership by Egyptian workers and youth and there is no signs that such a party is possible to build in near future. There is a deep divide in the opposition and thus far do not appear to have been able to generate the type of mass movement that toppled the Shah of Iran’s regime in 1979.

Sustainable significant change requires a new political structure, as well as a new process that ensures free and fair elections and adequate opportunities for popular participation. Real democracy must be substantive as well as procedural, bringing human security to the people, including basic needs, decent work, and a police that protects rather than harasses.

Many, particularly Morsi’s supporters within the still-vast Muslim Brotherhood, will likely see July 3 as a military coup, the return of decades of military rule that always loathed the Brotherhood. The oppositio will surely claim that the military stepped in only to safeguard the people’s will from Morsi himself. Anyway be it coup or revolution I think that now there is a window of opportunity open for democratization and reforms. Lets hope that next time the army is not needed to depose rulers.


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