Egyptians vote freely for the first time

Discussion in 'Politics' started by Chris, Mar 20, 2011.

  1. Chris
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    Chris Gold Member

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    Large numbers of Egyptians streamed into polling places, taking the first step toward moving their revolution from Tahrir (or Liberation) Square into the halls of government. Voters standing in long lines, some waiting uncomplainingly for up to three hours, applauded the promise of an end to the rigged parliamentary and presidential elections under toppled president Hosni Mubarak, which they derided as frauds that produced precooked results.

    “Before, we could all just sit at home,” said Khalid Hassan, a 46-year-old window repairman voting in Cairo’s humble Abassiyah neighborhood. “We knew they would just say what they wanted about the results, and our vote had no meaning. I could say no, they would say yes. I could say yes, they would say no.”

    The turnout, described as unprecedented by State Information Service Director Ismail Khairat, was estimated by the government’s High Judicial Commission at 60 percent, three times that of the last election. It suggested an eagerness by millions of Egyptians to carry forward the democratic uprising that began Jan. 25 in Tahrir Square and led to Mubarak’s departure Feb. 11.

    Whatever the verdict on the proposed amendments, the vote propelled Egypt to the front of the line in a reform movement that has swept through Arab nations across the Middle East over the last three months.

    Egyptians swarm polls in first vote since revolution - The Washington Post
     
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  2. tigerbob
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    tigerbob Increasingly jaded.

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    Keeping my fingers crossed about this. :eusa_pray:
     
  3. Trajan
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    Trajan conscientia mille testes

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    carry it forward to what exactly? all that glitters is not gold.


    another view-

    The referendum comes five weeks after Mr. Mubarak's fall. Four months later parliamentary elections are due, followed in September by a presidential poll. It's a mad rush. By comparison, South Africa spent four years negotiating the terms of its democratic handover between the day Nelson Mandela walked out of prison to its first free elections in 1994.

    Many Egyptians called for a steady, transparent and prolonged transition the moment Mubarak left. After three decades of his calcified rule, Egypt lacked proper parties, free media or democratic habits. This takes time to develop.

    The generals' decision to rush reflects either a lack of vision for Egypt's future, a desire to avoid responsibility for governing a huge and troubled state, or the preference for keeping the status quo minus the old pharaoh. Probably all of the above.

    The approach benefits the groups best organized today. The Islamist Muslim Brotherhood, founded in 1928, and remnants of the old ruling National Democratic Party are the loudest champions of today's referendum and the current timetable. They want elections before democratic forces can organize.

    If the military sticks to this calendar, the bulk of power could fall into their hands. The Brotherhood says it won't contest the presidency, but the group will run for parliament and may win a plurality. There they would be well-placed to write the political rules for the new Egypt. One of the amendments up for vote today gives the legislature the power to draw up a new constitution.

    Even if free, today's vote is flawed. The amendments were written by a group handpicked by the military that didn't include anyone from an organized political group other than the Muslim Brotherhood. All leading secular democratic figures in Egypt opposed the referendum. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, on her first visit to post-Mubarak Cairo this week, missed an opportunity to lend America's voice to the debate. "We don't have an opinion" on the referendum, she said. We should.

    Review & Outlook: Egypt's Flawed Transition - WSJ.com



    from your ow link-

    snip-

    Yes or no vote?

    Despite the broad enthusiasm for holding a vote, a number of leading political figures, particularly those most closely identified with the Tahrir Square revolt, called for a no vote. The figures include two announced presidential candidates, Mohamed ElBaradei, former head of the International Atomic Energy Agency, and Amr Moussa, secretary-general of the Arab League.

    They and other critics said there had not been enough time since Mubarak’s downfall for voters to understand fully what they were deciding on in the referendum. In addition, they said, the military’s accelerated schedule did not allow time for new parties to form and organize their followers. This, they said, gave an unfair advantage to two established parties, the Muslim Brotherhood and Mubarak’s National Democratic Party.

    As ElBaradei arrived to vote in the Mokattam area, a mob supporting a “yes” vote swarmed his car, smashed its windows and began throwing rocks at him, said a witness, Dina Abou Elsoud, 35. “The crowd was Muslim, saying ‘Vote yes for Islam’ and waving Muslim Brotherhood signs. . . . He didn’t get to vote. He didn’t get to go inside.”

    Later, ElBaradei tweeted that he and his family were “attacked by a group of organized thugs” and faulted the police as “irresponsible.”

    One of those voting no in Zamalek was Tarek el-Gazzar, a 34-year-old lawyer, who tapped out Facebook updates on his iPad while standing in a three-block line, alerting friends to expect waits of up to two hours. He expressed hope that the large turnout would include a majority of nos.
     
  4. Chris
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    Chris Gold Member

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    The world is becoming more democratic.

    This trend will continue.

    What will Glenn Beck wet his pants about now?
     
  5. elvis
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    elvis BANNED Supporting Member

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    You sitting on his lap.
     
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  6. California Girl
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    California Girl BANNED

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    I think the nuances of this situation float gently over the heads of the 'democracy loving' left. In their enthusiasm to paint a rosy picture to convince themselves that everything is fine, they overlook the elephants in the room. The elephants being that there is no democratic infrastructure in place, that the only real 'opposition' is from the Muslims Brotherhood, and that the population - outside the cities - has no idea what 'democracy' means.
     
  7. Seawytch
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    Seawytch Information isnt Advocacy

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    He'll find something. The thing with these "apocalyptic" folks like Beck is that as soon as their dire predictions are proven wrong, they just move on to their next dire prediction. Boring....
     
  8. tigerbob
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    tigerbob Increasingly jaded.

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    I hope you're right, but I think you may be counting your eggs too early. Still a million ways for this to turn out badly.
     
  9. The T
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    The T George S. Patton Party Supporting Member

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    And couple that with the unrest that has been happening between Muslims and Christians in the country...
     
  10. Sallow
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    Sallow The Big Bad Wolf. Supporting Member

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    Actually..no it doesn't. We understand that the world is not a simple place. The "one size fits all; if it ain't broke don't fix it" lockstep mentality is squarely on the right.

    Egypt may vote in a bat shit crazy regime bent on taking out Israel. And we should be fully prepared to tell them to go fuck themselves if they do that. But that's their decision and their choice.

    America should be dealing with the world on the world's terms. Not imposing it's will.

    We are not an Empire. And we should lead by example.
     

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