Reflection on Khaled Fahmy “We did not risk our lives simply to change the players” by Willi Ibbeken

In his article “We did not risk our lives simply to change the players”, Khaled Fahmy is sharing his thoughts and experience about Mohamed Morsy and explains, why he can’t regard Morsy as his president anymore.

Fahmy begins by expressing his doubts concerning the Muslim Brothers but he still beliefs that they should also have “a place within a free and democratic Egypt” (Fahmy).
After Fahmy participated in the peaceful revolution, he went to the first free presidential elections of Egypt and was not convinced by any of the candidates Ahmed Shafik and Mohamed Morsy and invalidated his vote.
By saying that he recognized Morsy as the winner but still doubting that he will have “ (…) a solution to my country’s woes”, Fahmy proves to be a true democrat. He accepted the result and decided to work hard in order to “topple him in the next presidential elections.” (Fahmy). Nevertheless, on May 18, 2013 he went to Tahrir Square in order to protest against Morsy and to make “him step down”.
Fahmy questions his behaviour by asking himself if he just couldn’t accept the result of the election or if he was a revolutionary and only having basic demands. Nevertheless, Fahmy describes that Morsy is the lesser of the two evils compared to Shafik.

According to Fahmy, Morsy failed in bringing the divided Egypt together and in including “the opposition in the key decisions facing his troubled country” (Fahmy)
Furthermore, Morsy gathered a government of Muslim Brothers and reached out to the fundamentalist salafis on the extreme right, instead of the centre.
Fahmy writes: “Still, I considered Morsy to be my president.” This is truly impressive, as Fahmy still holds on to his goodwill and hope for the better. His attitude proves the want for democracy and the hope for a better future. When Mursy attacked Egypt’s judiciary and placed himself above the law, even then, Fahmy still considered Mursy to be his president.

In his fist year, Morsy suppressed the opposition and blamed them of guiding a conspiracy against him. He also suppressed the freedom of information. “Still, I considered Morsy to be my president.” (Fahmy)

Morsy continued his “Brotherhoodization” and replaced Egypt’s bureaucracy with Brotherhood members. Morsy’s changes to government went far beyond the usual changes. He implanted Muslim Brother sympathisers in culture, police and education departments. Even now, Fahmy overlooks all this and still considered Morsy to be his president. Again, this proves his goodwill and desire for democracy but maybe also the refusal to believe that Morsy will worsen more and more and with him the young “democracy”.

But when Morsy did not bring the army under civilian control and also did not reform the security sector, Fahmy stopped believing in President Morsy. Fahmy writes that when revolutions broke out, the participants had different reasons – corruption, equality of wealth and more.

Fahmy’s major demand was “curbing the power of the army and subjecting it to civilian rule, and reforming the Egyptian police” (Fahmy). Morsy did not attempt to change anything in these sectors and corruption, even torture, within these sectors continued.

For Fahmy, the turning point came on April 2013, when his driver’s cousin was killed in a police station, in fact executed in the most awful way. Fahmy says: “We launched this revolution not only to have free elections, but to have a new Egypt in which we can live in dignity and freedom.”

The people of Egypt demanded real democracy but ended up with only a seemingly democracy and a president who is governing regardless of the consequences and people of Egypt and who is heading for a dictatorship. Fahmy admits, that Morsy’s starting position wasn’t easy, but if he would have just reached out to the people of the revolution, he would have had their support.

I find this article very moving. I’m not very educated on this topic, so I will not arrogate to myself to judge or go into detail but it is very impressive and touching how Fahmy is believing in the president and even overlooks all the wrongdoings of Morsy in the belief of change and democracy. Morsy is constantly overstepping the mark but still, people like Fahmy have trust and hope for their young democracy and can not let go of their hardly earned democracy.

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