Solidarity

January 31st, 2011 at 7:45 am by David Farrar

It’s been wonderful seeing the unrelenting protests for democracry in , following on from Tunisia. No country should have one party rule.

If the regime of the National Democratic Party is toppled, this may cause pangs of regret for . The NZ Party is a sister party of the NDP, through their membership of Socialist International.

Hat Tip: Guido Fawkes

Tags: ,

89 Responses to “Solidarity”

  1. rouppe (982 comments) says:

    But it is awful that looters entered the Cairo Museum and damaged several artefacts. What sort of moron does that.

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  2. Mr Robert Black (145 comments) says:

    Sshh, don’t tell that to the Chinese unsatisfied masses, they have a big itch to scratch.

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  3. iMP (2,422 comments) says:

    Poor people needing money to feed their families. Artefacts just don’t cut it when yr kids have no future.

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  4. iMP (2,422 comments) says:

    It’s now the 6th day in Cairo, but I still haven’t seen the army come on board. I wonder if the tide could be turning and the administration will re-take control. Mubarak still has the authority over a very large army. It could be Iran all over again.

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  5. Adolf Fiinkensein (2,920 comments) says:

    <b"It’s been wonderful seeing the unrelenting protests for democracy in Egypt, following on from Tunisia."

    That must be the most foolish and naive thing you have said for years David.

    If you recall, the ‘opposition’ essentially is the Muslim Brotherhood which is poised to do in Egypt that which it already has done in Iran.

    Your much vaunted democracy will be but a fleeting zephyr, replaced by Egyptian Mullahs with a brand of repression which will make Mubarak look like Joan of Arc.

    As in Fiji, the nation’s only hope for peaceful and civilised stability will turn out to be the army which is more respected by the general public than any political party, let alone the fanatical islamist Nazis of the Muslim Botherhood.

    Let us hope the Egyptian military

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  6. David Farrar (1,902 comments) says:

    Adolf, I don’t support democracy just for white people.

    Yes Mubarak provides stability, But he runs a repressive regime. Turkey has shown one can have democracy without radicalisation.

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  7. TimG_Oz (865 comments) says:

    The New Zealand Egyptians are also protesting against the Dictator, Mubarak.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/4598438/Christchurch-Egyptians-protest

    They are being supporting by the New Zealand Socialist Alliance – just check out the facebook page. Great! If there’s anybody that knows how to restrict freedoms, and support an oppressive theocracy, It’s Socialist Alliance.

    Number one on the Agenda of Socialist Alliiance will be violence. We know that they are disgusted with Egypt for having peace with Israel.

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  8. philu (13,393 comments) says:

    “..Your much vaunted democracy will be but a fleeting zephyr, replaced by Egyptian Mullahs with a brand of repression which will make Mubarak look like Joan of Arc…

    you were a bit nervous about communism/the soviet union for quite a while..eh adolf…?

    ..there is always an enemy out there….eh…?

    ..now it’s muslims..eh..?

    a monolithic-force….with yr demise in mind…eh adolf..?

    ..(you do know all that fear is down to a medical condition/mental-defect….eh..?..)

    the fact is egypt cd go either way…

    …but the protestors don’t seem to be religion imbued…

    …they seem to be shouting more about wanting democracy…

    ..i thought you supported democracy there..adolf…

    ..40% of egyptians live on under two dollars a day…

    ..they have been suffering under a repressive-dictatorship ..propped up by america…for 30+ years…

    ..but you think things should just continue as before..?

    …and that’s because of yr fears of both change..and muslims..?

    phil(whoar.co.nz)

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  9. joana (1,983 comments) says:

    I agree with you Adolf. Very soon people in these countries will be under far more repressive regimes. The people I fear for are the Coptic Christians , any other Christians still in the area and the Israelis.

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  10. Pete George (23,683 comments) says:

    The US are trying to tread a careful path between being seen to promote and support freedom and democracy, but wanting to retain a level of influence in Egypt via a dictator that they support hugely financially.

    Egypt Pits American Values Versus U.S. Interest

    The problem for the US is they are even more impotent than Mubarak at dealing with this – and any open attempt to prop Mubarak up is likely to stir a restless population even more.

    The protesters made a very smart move, when the army showed up on the streets they were cheered and embraced (US supplied tanks and all) – trying to get the real power on their side, and making it awkward for the troops to act against them.

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  11. Adolf Fiinkensein (2,920 comments) says:

    David, when did you last have a close look at Turkey? Twenty years ago? Are you old enough to remember exactly the sequence of events which led to the transition of power from the Shah of Iran to the current appalling regime? Do you think an Iran backed takeover of Egypt by militant islamists would be better than the Mubarak regime? Better for Egypt, better for Israel, better for the Middle East, better for the world?

    Funny thing is I don’t hear you shouting for democracy in China.

    A number of my friends have spent significant time in different parts of China recently and report the vast majority of people are very happy with one party rule. They have stability and they don’t have Mullahs or Bishops running the show. They actually don’t want your brand of democracy.

    [DPF: You see the choice as betwene dictatorship and militant islamists. There are many shades of grey between.

    And I think the latest Nobel Peace Prize recipient would disagree with you that the vast majority Chinese want one party rule.

    People argued the same thing about those in Eastern Europe.]

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  12. SBY (121 comments) says:

    “this may cause pangs of regret for Labour”

    That really is a cheap shot.

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  13. Redbaiter (13,197 comments) says:

    “That must be the most foolish and naive thing you have said for years David.”

    Especially given the threat an MB controlled Egypt will be to Israel.

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  14. Pete George (23,683 comments) says:

    You’re either for freedom and democracy, or you’re not. Some here remind me of Orwell:

    Freedom and democracy for everyone as long as it suits my interests.

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  15. Redbaiter (13,197 comments) says:

    Only a moron like you Pete could describe an Iranized Egypt as a ‘democracy’. What a waste of time Kiwiblog is.

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  16. joana (1,983 comments) says:

    What is your point PG? These protests won’t herald ”freedom and democracy” They will herald brutally repressive islamic regimes. An exiled islamic leader has already returned to Tunisia. How clear does the writing on the wall have to be?

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  17. philu (13,393 comments) says:

    “..The protesters made a very smart move, when the army showed up on the streets they were cheered and embraced (US supplied tanks and all) – trying to get the real power on their side, and making it awkward for the troops to act against them…”

    more teeth-grindingly/cringeworthy-simplistic analysis from pg..

    ..the troops did not attack because the protestors smiled and waved at them…

    ..the army has a long tradition of not being the toy of the dictatorship…

    ..as i noted elsewhere..it is not the army who has been the tool of opression in egypt..

    ..the police and internal security forces have done all that dirty-work…

    ..this explains their not attacking the protestors..

    …not ‘cos the protestors did a jon key…eh..?

    (this may help..)

    http://whoar.co.nz/2011/robert-fisk-egypt-death-throes-of-a-dictatorship/

    “…Our writer joins protesters atop a Cairo tank as the army shows signs of backing the people against Mubarak’s regime.

    The Egyptian tanks, the delirious protesters sitting atop them, the flags, the 40,000 protesters weeping and crying and cheering in Freedom Square and praying around them, the Muslim Brotherhood official sitting amid the tank passengers.

    Should this be compared to the liberation of Bucharest?

    Climbing on to an American-made battle tank myself – I could only remember those wonderful films of the liberation of Paris.

    A few hundred metres away, Hosni Mubarak’s black-uniformed security police were still firing at demonstrators near the interior ministry.

    It was a wild, historical victory celebration – Mubarak’s own tanks freeing his capital from his own dictatorship.

    In the pantomime world of Mubarak himself – and of Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton in Washington –

    – the man who still claims to be president of Egypt swore in the most preposterous choice of vice-president in an attempt to soften the fury of the protesters

    – Omar Suleiman, Egypt’s chief negotiator with Israel and his senior intelligence officer –

    – a 75-year-old with years of visits to Tel Aviv and Jerusalem – and four heart attacks to his credit.

    How this elderly apparatchik might be expected to deal with the anger and joy of liberation of 80 million Egyptians is beyond imagination.

    When I told the demonstrators on the tank around me the news of Suleiman’s appointment – they burst into laughter.

    Their crews, in battledress and smiling and in some cases clapping their hands –

    – made no attempt to wipe off the graffiti that the crowds had spray-painted on their tanks.

    “Mubarak Out – Get Out”, and “Your regime is over, Mubarak” have now been plastered on almost every Egyptian tank on the streets of Cairo…” (cont..)

    phil(whoar.co.nz)

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  18. Pete George (23,683 comments) says:

    I didn’t describe anything like that, I was talking about principles.

    No one has any idea how Egypt will end up. The US prefer leaving Mubarak to guide a transition to democracy (belatedly). That may be the least risk path, except that Mubarak has promised reforms in the past which turned out to be self interested lies.

    Redbaiter, you call for revolution here, you must have thought it through and understand that it’s very difficult to control the outcome of revolutions, and like a switch to democracy it is a risk that the desired result may not eventuate. Should nothing be changed in case you end up with something worse?

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  19. Pete George (23,683 comments) says:

    These protests won’t herald ”freedom and democracy” They will herald brutally repressive islamic regimes.

    That’s one of a number of possibilities, but surely you wouldn’t mind if that happened, or do you only support brutal repression of Islamic regions enforced by “good” democratic countries?

    Did the US revolution herald a brutally repressive regime? Or was the risk worth it? France?

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  20. big bruv (14,156 comments) says:

    Phool

    Please provide a list of all the jobs you applied for yesterday, I want that list by 9.45am so I can check that you have actually done what I asked you to do.

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  21. philu (13,393 comments) says:

    “..I didn’t describe anything like that, I was talking about principles…”

    ‘um..!..how do you read that..?

    ..you claimed the troops didn’t attack..’cos the protestors embraced them..

    ..these are your words…

    ..you weren’t talking about ‘principles’..

    ..you were relating direct cause and effect…

    ..which..i showed.. is a pile of horseshit…

    phil(whoar.co.nz)

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  22. philu (13,393 comments) says:

    sheesh bb..you’d be risking off-topic demerits there…wouldn’t ya..?

    ..how could you not..?

    ..or do you never get them..?

    ..got that rightwing pass…eh..?

    ..and um..!..a taxi driver directing my life/as life-coach..?

    ..d’yareckon..?

    phil(whoar.co.nz)

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  23. Pete George (23,683 comments) says:

    Sorry phil, your mess of a post got in the way of continuity, you should know I rarely respond to you. I was responding to RB’s mess of a post – at least his are readable.

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  24. RRM (10,020 comments) says:

    If the regime of the National Democratic Party is toppled, this may cause pangs of regret for Labour

    lol wat????

    Kiwiblog – Fomenting National Party propaganda every election year since 2003!

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  25. David Farrar (1,902 comments) says:

    Any future comments not on Egypt/post topic will get demerits.

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  26. emmess (1,432 comments) says:

    If the regime of the National Democratic Party is toppled, this may cause pangs of regret for Labour

    Actually, that may have been a cheap shot but there is a grain of truth in it.
    If the international left can accuse America of suppporting dictatorship in Egypt, they need to look at some of the nasty people who they are aligning themselves with and not just in Egypt.

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  27. Pete George (23,683 comments) says:

    People argued the same thing about those in Eastern Europe.

    That’s a good example of transition. It’s not always quick, it’s not always easy, but it should be the aim.
    Not all democracies are perfect (actually none are) but they are the better alternative.

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  28. Redbaiter (13,197 comments) says:

    Crusader Rabbit has a good post up on this issue.

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  29. wat dabney (3,809 comments) says:

    You’re either for freedom and democracy, or you’re not.

    Your mistake is in thinking that “freedom” and “democracy” are the same thing. They are not.
    Democracy is never the objective. Democracy is just a means to and end; that end being liberty.
    The only reason to advocate democracy is that it is typically the most likely means of delivering that liberty (basically because any would-be president has to extend the franchise way beyond just a small circle of henchmen.) But the fact remains that an unelected regime can be far more preferable to one which gets itself democratically elected by virtue of its powerful ethnic or ideological powerbase.

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  30. Fletch (6,494 comments) says:

    I agree with Adolf on this one. It’s history repeating itself. This is Obama’s “Carter Moment” as Pam Geller puts it over at Big Government. Funny how Obama is supporting a regime change in Egypt but did nothing when the Iranian people rose up in 2009 to protest Amadinajad (when he lost the election) and the subsequent murderous putdown.

    In 2009, [Obama’s] silence about the brutal, murderous putdown of its people by the Iranian mullahcracy amount to his tacit support of that putdown, and spoke volumes. Obama became part of the problem, not part of the solution. He gave religious barbarism the free hand. In response, Iranian protestors had a direct message for America’s president: “You’re Either With Us or With Them.”

    And since then also, Obama’s most consistent response to Iran (as well as to North Korea’s hostile moves) has been to ignore them and hope that proven evildoers will behave themselves. Wrong. The good cop is off the beat.
    Obama failed, and the consequences of his failure have begun to be made manifest now in Egypt. I cannot understate the importance of Egypt to American interests and Israeli security. Egypt is arguably the second-most important country to the US in the region. Mubarak has been a U.S. ally for decades. We send three billion dollars a year to Egypt. And Egypt made a peace deal with Israel.

    But knowing Obama, he will throw another ally under the bus.
    Yes, Mubarak needs to institute democratic reform. I pray he doesn’t brutally respond to the uprising like Iran did — they slaughtered their people and crushed the Iranian revolution.
    Meanwhile, the more the layers are peeled back, the more we see the hand of Iran behind what is unfolding in Egypt and all over the Middle East.

    Who has emerged as a leader for post-Mubarak Egypt? Iran’s man, Mohammad ElBaradei. It is widely acknowledged that, as head of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), ElBaradei ignored and left out of reports evidence that the IAEA had about Iran’s secret nuclear weapons program. He did as much as the North Koreans to advance Iran’s nuclear weapons program. For years he provided the cover they needed in the international community to build their annihilationist program.

    If Obama had seized the moment in the Iranian freedom uprising, we would not be in this position now. Iran is casting a dark cloud over the free world. The mullahs are conducting a covert war against the West in Iraq and Afghanistan. Iran has aligned with Venezuela and Brazil, in an Islamic imperialistic advance into Latin America. And now Iran’s bomb man ElBaradei is jockeying for power in Egypt.

    Whatever comes after Mubarak will be terrible. Make no mistake.

    Yes, it’s Carter/Iran/Khomeni all over again. The Muslim Brotherhood and Iran have their hands all over this.

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  31. Fletch (6,494 comments) says:

    ps, I walked down Queen Street on Saturday and the UNITE (Unions) and Leftists were there protesting with their “FREEEGYPT” signs. If the Leftists and Unions are supporting the removal of Mubarak, and ElBaradei being instated then you know which side you should be on.

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  32. Pete George (23,683 comments) says:

    then you know which side you should be on.

    The people of Egypt? Or religious people who try fearmongering and scaremongering about other people?

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  33. scrubone (3,105 comments) says:

    Pete: there’s a difference?

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  34. Fletch (6,494 comments) says:

    Pete, and is it better for the people of Egypt to be under a man supported by the Muslim Brotherhood – another Ahmadinajad, who will institute Sharia law and threaten the US and Israel?

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  35. Pete George (23,683 comments) says:

    That’s one possibility Fletch. What are all the other possibilities?

    Or do you only want to talk about the worst you can think of?

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  36. side show bob (3,660 comments) says:

    I see China has blocked all Internet searches with the word Egypt in them. Perhaps the old Commie despots are slightly nervous, how sad never mind. Now a revolution in China would make Egypt look like a Sunday school picnic.

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  37. Mr Robert Black (145 comments) says:

    “side show bob (2,955) Says:

    January 31st, 2011 at 10:57 am
    I see China has blocked all Internet searches with the word Egypt in them. Perhaps the old Commie despots are slightly nervous, how sad never mind. Now a revolution in China would make Egypt look like a Sunday school picnic.”

    You just made my day!

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  38. PaulL (6,048 comments) says:

    If the people of a country want democracy, we should always support them. There seem to be people marching in the streets in Egypt, they seem to want democracy.

    I’d have rathered that the incumbents had made their own steps in a managed and controlled way. That probably would have led to a relatively stable regime, and perhaps even a functioning democracy. They didn’t do that, and now it looks like an uncontrolled transition, with a much higher risk of a government that is religious or ethnic in nature.

    Unfortunately, we don’t get a choice in that. The choice we had was 10-20 years ago, when we and other western powers didn’t pressure for the steps that were needed then. Now, we just get to go along for the ride.

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  39. joana (1,983 comments) says:

    Your problem here PG , is that you fundamentally do not understand islam.

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  40. JC (973 comments) says:

    Its difficult to see this turning out well..

    The Iranian Revolution brought in the Mad Mullahs.
    The Cedar Revolution in Lebanon has now brought in Hezbollah as Govt
    Free elections in Gaza has brought in Hamas.

    Eygpt must inevitably go to the Muslim Brotherhood, and Hamas (in there now) *unless* the army takes a strong position and runs the country till things settle down. Pew polls show large majorities of Egyptians favour Sharia and Islamic law over any other system.. which means the chances of war with Israel are back on the table, the Suez Canal falls to the Islamists at both ends, the Saudis are at risk and most of the Arab world becomes radicalised.

    Hopeful comparisons with European revolutions aren’t sensible because they have a Christian/European heritage which will out every time if given a chance.. even Tunisia is different with 57% of its young people having degrees and a secular outlook (education over 7% of GDP).

    Egypt has Islam, massive poverty and a history of authoritarianism.. its a big ask for it to avoid the way of the Iran, Gaza,and the like.

    JC

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  41. backster (2,184 comments) says:

    Logic tells me that Adolf is right though I can’t see what the free world can do about it.At present most are making politically correct words and speeches. The Nobel Peace Prize doesn’t have a lot of credibility left. At best the defeat of Mubarak will result in the same shambles that has resulted following the removal of the former military dictator of Pakistan.

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  42. Pete George (23,683 comments) says:

    Your problem joana is that you fundamentally do not understand democracy. Or you only want it for those that agree with your extreme views.

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  43. joana (1,983 comments) says:

    PG My views are no more extreme than yours. Democracy is a Greek concept which islam has no interest in. Islam is a political movement not a religion. This is rebellion against a dictator. How would any Egyptians know anything about democracy when they haven’t been living under it? Your sentiments are quaint but naive.

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  44. PaulL (6,048 comments) says:

    So, the position of some here is that Egyptians should only be allowed to choose their ruler if they happen to choose a ruler that we in the West agree with. Do any of you notice how ludicrous that is as a position? If some external power is reserving the right to veto certain parties, then it’s hardly a democracy, is it.

    My view would be that the West’s ongoing support of regimes that prevent choice has led to a large part of the stunting of political discourse in the Arab world. People in the middle east have no idea how useless a muslim government imposing sharia law actually would be. It’s easy for people to say they’d vote for that when they can’t vote, it’s easy to say they’d live under that system when the alternative is a dictatorship.

    The problem here is that this may break down in an uncontrolled way, and people may vote for a hard line government without having had the time to appreciate what that really means – and then it will be too late. And again, now is the wrong time to try and do something about that. Our choices are to have done something in the past (clearly no longer an option), or to wait for the breakdown, provide support and assistance to the people, support freedom and democracy, and conspicuously not interfere in the choices of the people. Then we attempt to woo whatever government takes power, and try to make sure they don’t remove the human rights of the Egyptian people. As in NZ, it shouldn’t be possible for the majority to vote to override the human rights of the minority – so we need to keep an eye on the rights of Christians, for example, in Egypt.

    To do anything else is to make the situation worse.

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  45. Pete George (23,683 comments) says:

    How would any Egyptians know anything about democracy when they haven’t been living under it?

    Egyptians have the advantage of being able to look around the world and see democracy being practiced, in countries that at one stage knew little or nothing about democracy because they hadn’t been living under it.

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  46. Pete George (23,683 comments) says:

    Is it the same people who think it was ok for the US to invade Iraq and force democracy on them, but that it’s not ok for the people of Egypt to demand democracy in their own country?

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  47. kowtow (8,774 comments) says:

    Some people are just down right stupid!

    Protests against a dictator do not equate to demands for democracy. Democracy is a completly alien concept to these Sunni Arabs . In fact it’s so alien only the military and elites can guarantee it ie Turkey. And Turks aren’t even Arabs. Their form of democracy alienates Christians ,Kurds and some sect of Muslims whose name doesn’t come to mind.

    Why no demonstrations in Libya? This is a resurgent Islamist movement that has been on the march since at least the Iranian revolution.

    Be careful what you wish for DPF as the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood will be in Gaza (if they’re not already) and on the rest of Israel’s Sinai borders.
    They’re already in the north thanks to Hizbollah in that other Middle East “democracy” Lebanon and if Jordan goes well who knows what will happen given the huge numbers of Palestinians there.

    As to educated Tunisians ,yeah right ,that’s what they said about Iran. Really westernised middle class,pro US, pro Israel….where are they now? Dead,exiled or cowed into submission by the Islamic peasantry!

    Turkey going the same way only it’s business men leading the Islamists there,so that makes it OK to some thicko western apologists.

    In the meantime let’s make fun of Christian fundamentalists,FFS!

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  48. hubbers (142 comments) says:

    Good luck to the people of Egypt.

    They’re going to learn that democracy doesn’t necessarily give you better leaders but it does let you tell them to **** off every few years.

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  49. Pete George (23,683 comments) says:

    Protests against a dictator do not equate to demands for democracy.

    Rigged elections late last year are a contributing factor to the protests.

    ElBaradei returns to Egypt calling for democracy
    Arab League head wants Egypt multi-party democracy

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  50. DJP6-25 (1,389 comments) says:

    The odds are it will turn into another Iran.

    cheers

    David Prosser

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  51. malcolm (1,952 comments) says:

    In the meantime let’s make fun of Christian fundamentalists,FFS!

    Kowtow, pointing out the absurdity of creationism has really upset you. Why don’t you argue the case instead of whining about “making fun of Christians” and special pleading. And we’re not just laughing at Christian fundies – there are many many more creationists Muslims and we think they’re stupid as well.

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  52. kowtow (8,774 comments) says:

    Democracy Islamic style. Quote courtesy of the Algerian Islamist democrats.

    One man,one vote ,one time.

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  53. joana (1,983 comments) says:

    Democracy on the lips of a muslim is always a lie..more naevity from PG. I am with you Kow Tow.

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  54. Pete George (23,683 comments) says:

    Joana, are you against what the US have done with Iraq?

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  55. joana (1,983 comments) says:

    Of course PG…My close friend and her family lived there under Saddam..very modern country , hospitals , Unis..naturally all the pictures of him everywhere..all dictators do this…the Assyrian christians and other Christians were much safer then. Now many have left. My friend loved these Assyrians , beautiful strong people , ancient culture…
    Now it is an islamic battle ground with endless fighting between the various muslim factions. Not safe for anyone.
    When I lived under an islamic dictator , I did sometimes think that a dictatorship was a good thing..especially in that however brutally , they weld various groups together. When a dictator is deposed there is often great lawlessness and violence and the hopes that many held during the toppling quite soon turn to disollusionment.

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  56. wat dabney (3,809 comments) says:

    So, the position of some here is that Egyptians should only be allowed to choose their ruler if they happen to choose a ruler that we in the West agree with. Do any of you notice how ludicrous that is as a position?

    It’s not ludicrous at all. You’re missing the crucial point which is that a government that “we in the West agree with” is one which respects human rights.

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  57. Pete George (23,683 comments) says:

    a government that “we in the West agree with” is one which respects human rights.

    Not the current government then.

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  58. wat dabney (3,809 comments) says:

    No indeed, Labour NZ’s sister organisation – Mubarak’s NDP – is an oppressive regime.

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  59. Redbaiter (13,197 comments) says:

    Egypt and Mubarak not that simple.

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  60. wat dabney (3,809 comments) says:

    The US has been plotting against NZ Labour’s sister organisation…

    US secretly backed Egyptian protest leaders
    For the last three years, the US government secretly provided aid to the leaders behind this week’s social uprising in Egypt aimed to topple the government of President Hosni Mubarak, according to a leaked diplomatic cable…The leaked document indicates that the US government was publicly supporting Mubarak’s government while privately backing opposition groups. A plan concocted by the dissident groups to oust Mubarak and install a democratic government prior to the September 2011 elections was relayed to the American Embassy in Cairo.

    http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2011/01/secretly-backed-egyptian-protest-leaders/

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  61. PaulL (6,048 comments) says:

    wat dabney: playing both sides against the middle. Who would have guessed?

    Realistically, if the US govt didn’t maintain links with opposition groups, they’d look pretty stupid when the revolution comes.

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  62. Redbaiter (13,197 comments) says:

    “we think they’re stupid as well.”

    Wow, and I just read on another thread where it was Christians who are smug arrogant and superior.

    Just WTF have you got going for you Malcolm?

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  63. Pete George (23,683 comments) says:

    Egypt and Mubarak not that simple.

    Not sure what you’re comparing it to, but no, it’s not simple at all, but that’s hardly a revelation.
    The world at that level is never simple. Are you starting to get it?

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  64. malcolm (1,952 comments) says:

    Same advice to you, Redbaiter. Why don’t you make an argument for creationism if you’re so adamant it’s not rubbish. That you go on the attack suggests you have none.

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  65. Pete George (23,683 comments) says:

    One view of the driving force behind the uprising:

    Protest’s Old Guard Falls In Behind the Young

    Just four days ago, a small group of Internet-savvy young political organizers gathered in the Cairo home of an associate of Mohamed ElBaradei, the diplomat and Nobel laureate, to plot a day of street protests that ignited a full-scale uprising.

    In the process, their informal clique would become the effective leaders of a decades-old opposition movement…

    Surprised by the turnout, older opposition leaders from across the spectrum joined in, vowing to turn out their supporters for another day of protest on Friday. But the same handful of young online organizers were still calling the shots.

    “The young people are still leading this,” said Ibrahim Issa, a prominent opposition intellectual who attended some of the meetings. And the older figures, most notably Dr. ElBaradei, have so far readily accepted the young activists’ lead.

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  66. Inky_the_Red (761 comments) says:

    People seem afraid of what other cultures might elect. It is their country if they democratically elect in government why does it bother you?

    I think people over estimate the influence of the Muslim Brotherhood. Yes they are one of the largest parties in Egypt but not a movement of mass support. The Muslim Brotherhood did not start the protests they were late joiners.

    What rights do the west have to tell the people of the Middle East who should govern them?

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  67. magic bullet (776 comments) says:

    This whole thread just reinforces to me what i’ve known for a long time. Generally, people on the conservative right believe in conservative control, not democracy.

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  68. philu (13,393 comments) says:

    “…Just WTF have you got going for you Malcolm?..”

    not superstition-riddled..?

    ..(just saying…!…)

    phil(whoar.co.nz)

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  69. magic bullet (776 comments) says:

    oh and if you want to point to friends of the dictatorship Mr Farrar – i suggest you follow the money, not some nutty guilt by association fluff.

    “The U.S. keeps Mubarak in power—it gave his regime $1.5 billion in aid last year—mainly because he supports America’s pro-Israel policies, especially by helping Israel maintain its stranglehold on Gaza.”

    http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article27375.htm

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  70. joana (1,983 comments) says:

    Democracy and an islamic country in the same sentence???..It is never going to happen. There are NO democratic islamic countries..the whole concept is oxymoronic. Islam is a totally , totalitarian system which has its own system of govt ; sharia law. No muslim leaders have any interest in democracy. The MB stooge may be using the word at present but it is only a word ; with him using it , it has no meaning..It is just a ruse to fool the foolish.

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  71. Inky_the_Red (761 comments) says:

    Joana

    Countries with democratically elected governments where the majority of the population are Islamic include Albania, Kosovo, Turkey and Indonesia (also apparently Iraq and Afghanistan but I doubt it)

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  72. PaulL (6,048 comments) says:

    Magic bullet: plenty on this thread supported democracy. Many of them I recognise as being of the right wing. Don’t jump to assumptions.

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  73. joana (1,983 comments) says:

    And Inky you believe in the legitimacy of these elections?? Sharia Law is advancing every day in Indonesia.

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  74. Inky_the_Red (761 comments) says:

    looks like a multi party democracy to me
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Politics_of_Indonesia

    New Zealand has laws that some western countries would be appalled by. Does that make NZ undemocratic?

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  75. kowtow (8,774 comments) says:

    Inky,

    Albania and Kosovo are European and as such may be more “European” than Islamic. Having said that both are very new democracies and their democratic institutions may not be particularly strong. The Kosovan Prime Minister stands accused of organ trafficking. The Balkans are notoriously unstable,perhaps because of the Turkish hand in the region.

    Turkey and Indonesia are really “military democracies” where democracy has been imposed from top to bottom. As such they are not deeply rooted and time will tell.

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  76. joana (1,983 comments) says:

    Noone was talking about NZ Inky. When I was living in Malaysa , there was all sorts of intimidation and surveillance before the elections..and then there was open bribery , with trucks loaded up with money travelling around all the poor areas paying people to vote for the then regime..Hardly elections as we know them.

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  77. Johnboy (16,994 comments) says:

    “trucks loaded up with money travelling around all the poor areas paying people to vote for the then regime..Hardly elections as we know them..”

    Never been a liarbore stratgist involved in WFF/Free student loans then Joana? :)

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  78. chiz (1,164 comments) says:

    Kowtow:Turkey and Indonesia are really “military democracies” where democracy has been imposed from top to bottom. As such they are not deeply rooted and time will tell.

    WTF? The military in Turkey is famously secular and strongly suspicious of islamism in politicians. The democracy in Indonesia wasn’t imposed by anyone – they used to be a dictatorship until the students led a revolution.

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  79. Hurf Durf (2,860 comments) says:

    An Iranised Egypt is what the Western left want. The big question is if Mohammed ElBaradei, the main (and at the moment, only) face of the revolution, will be able to withstand Iranian pressure in the form of a revitalised MB. Considering he was a whore for them vis-a-vis their nuclear programme, the answer is probably not. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if there’s a deal of back-scratching going on here.

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  80. chiz (1,164 comments) says:

    In what sense was ElBaradei a whore for the Iranians? He was the head of the IAEA, and served as the head. He wasn’t out there doing the inspections personally. His agency could only go on what inspectors found and what his analysts made of it. You may have quibbles about the competency of some of the people at the IAEA but thats quite different to somehow claiming he personally was working for the Iranians or even biased towards them.

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  81. adze (2,129 comments) says:

    Malaysia is probably a unique case as there is a history of ethnic tension between the predominantly Muslim ethnic Malays, the economically powerful Chinese and Indian ethnic groups. Non-muslims make up around 40% of the population. You can imagine how threatening those numbers would be to some indigenous Malays (and conversely, the immigrant citizenry) compared to the 2% Christian population in Egypt…

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  82. Hurf Durf (2,860 comments) says:

    In so far that his “findings” were usually such bollocks even the French had problems with his working methods. You know, the French.

    As for being the head of the IAEA: well, we all know how effecting these international organisations end up being.

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  83. V (749 comments) says:

    It’s not all together clear what is going to emerge, or whom or what will seize power. The Iranian revolution certainly proves what can happen.

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  84. Pete George (23,683 comments) says:

    The Iranian revolution certainly proves what can happen.

    So can the American revolution. And the French revolution. And the Berlin wall breaking revolution.

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  85. Manolo (14,065 comments) says:

    Egyptians have reservations about ElBaradei.

    Egyptians on the streets of Cairo said they had reservations about opposition leader Mohamed ElBaradei, who has offered to act as transitional leader to prepare Egypt for democratic elections.

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/01/31/us-egypt-elbaradei-idUSTRE70U28H20110131

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  86. Manolo (14,065 comments) says:

    Interesting analysis from the German press:

    http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,742604,00.html

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  87. Christopher Thomson (377 comments) says:

    If the worst happens and Egypt becomes a Muslim theocracy (like Iran) will this be remembered as Farrar’s ‘Keith Locke’ moment?

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  88. Manolo (14,065 comments) says:

    If Egypt’s President Hosni Mubarak is toppled, Israel will lose one of its very few friends in a hostile neighborhood and President Barack Obama will bear a large share of the blame, Israeli pundits said on Monday.

    Political commentators expressed shock at how the United States as well as its major European allies appeared to be ready to dump a staunch strategic ally of three decades, simply to conform to the current ideology of political correctness.

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/01/31/us-egypt-israel-usa-idUSTRE70U53720110131

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  89. Pete George (23,683 comments) says:

    It is politically correct to let other countries decide for themselves whether they have democracy or not.

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