Maikel Nabil: Opinions from a Prisoner after the Revolution
The following piece was taken from Maikel Nabil's blog.
Do you know what the hardest time I’ve spent incarcerated was? What hurt the most? … No, not the time I’ve tried to slit my wrists with a piece of glass and couldn’t because it wasn’t sharp enough… and wasn’t the night I spent at the same place where they told me that the disappeared journalist Reda Hilal was assassinated… not also that time where I was physically assaulted by a police officer and the sanctity of my body was violated… and it also wasn’t those moments when they made me watch them torture the other inmates at ElMarg prison facility…. Not the moments when the ElMarg police officers where framing me for religious contempt and blackmailing me to stay silent about their violations against me… and not the moments I was so close to death during my hunger strike, not the moments when I forgot the names of my friends nor the moments when I started to lose my vision, nor the moments following me waking up and not realizing where I was, not the moment when I refused to write an apology that would set me free and chose to return to prison with my own free will, it wasn’t the moments I cried for my dear friend Nour Moreb the loyal friend who made sure before he committed suicide to make my picture as his Facebook profile picture so as to expose the silence of the world on my incarceration, no all those moments were hard, but they weren’t the hardest.
The hardest moment was when I was stepping in the military court from the transportation vehicles while on hunger strike shouting out with the down fall of the military ruling while seeing only two people standing before the court, my father and a friend!!! … or when I was standing alone in the court room before the judge without lawyers present, while tens of lawyers were in the adjacent hall.
How many times have I asked to be visited by a human rights lawyer so that he would put an end for the violations happening against me in jail? But not one human rights organization responded to my pleas, and if it weren’t for Amir Salem, the brave lawyer, who helped me transfer by the end of December out of ElMarg prison facility, I might’ve been killed there as a result of mistreatment inside.
It was hard when one of the rebels told me about a meeting he had with some of the members of the S.C.A.F. on February 2011, and how he told them that he was my friend though he didn’t approve of the offences that I directed to the armed forces… the funny thing was that this person regretted it and told me about what happened, but how many others did the same thing and never said a word? ... The rebels were the ones who gave the green light for the army to imprison me.
The crisis of the Egyptian revolution
The Egyptian revolution missed the presence of a compass… the rebels are moved by their temperaments and the flow of inclination, the don’t know what their goals are or what they want… they went out on their way to bring down the regime, then gave the power to the army of that regime, and surrendered the parliament to the religious wing of the regime, then handed the leadership of the revolution to the general intelligence agents… they were fascinated and fooled by media and cable show stars while blinded to the dirty prison uniforms… searching for a hero to free them while oblivious to the freedom existing within them, looking for a just ruler among a bunch of thieves… listening to populists and demagogues while not reading for philosophers and intellectuals … they pursue those of gossip rather than those of understanding … a nation that does not read, as if knowledge was a vice, they put ideological barriers between them and the key to their revolution’s success, the move with the herd, not the herd of the “sofa party”, but the herd of the revolution’s party without asking about the intentions of the alpha male leading this herd!!!
Some might see me as conceited for saying this (and they are free to do so) but I assume that I would’ve made a difference in the fate of this revolution, I might’ve saved a lot of lives and eyes, I might’ve shrunk the lifespan of the July military regime, I would’ve helped in the victory of this revolution during its early months… the members of the military council knew that well, that’s why they started with the procedures of my case since the 2nd week of them assuming power (and perhaps the 1st week)
And for those who wonder about the abilities I claim to have, they are simply the same points I’ve been attacked on: being atheist, my foreign relations my position concerning Israel… the world doesn’t feel that I’m odd or different or eastern… my position regarding Israel assures everybody that I don’t hate anybody based on their beliefs, that I will not cause a new war in the region … my position on religion removes any doubt regarding any relation between me and extremists groups, and at the same time confirms my commitment to rational analysis and reasonable thinking… during my conversations with foreign diplomats the conversation always is very straightforward, and a lot do those diplomats admit their fault without shame just because they think I’m not a stranger.
I would have used that so we could stop the arms deals that is constantly supplied to the military council, and save the lives and eyes of the rebels, this could’ve also been invested to apply pressure to the council to hand over the power during only six months. The Egyptian government to accept the Rome convention , and other international human rights treaties, the council would’ve been forced to organize a free election, and to hold just courts for all the corrupts of the July system…
But all this never happened simply because the revolutionary bodies put their hate for Israel before their love for their country, and delivered me on a silver platter to the militaries … I believe that it was the rebels were the ones who imprisoned me not the militaries, I’ve been tried and imprisoned really early during the revolution, at a time were the rebels were influential, and if they’ve taken the same reaction they did when Asmaa Mahfouz and Reem Maged and others later on, I wouldn’t have been imprisoned in the first place.
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