Friday, August 25, 2006

The Significance of Hizballah's Popularity

Hi there. It’s been a while since I posted. I went on vacation for a while, and the rest of the time it was too hot to blog :) But, now I’m back and I promise to start writing more regularly.

I bought the important Egyptian daily newspapers yesterday, and in Rose Al Yousef newspaper, I found an article regarding Hizballah’s current exploding popularity (in print only, not available on the web). This article stood out from the current conventional wisdom in Egypt. If you live in Egypt, you’ll know there is a general state of euphoria regarding Hizballah’s recent “victory”, with several newspapers giving out posters of Nasrallah and some even issuing special supplements that include Nasrallah’s biography, poems glorifying him, and similar stuff. Not to mention the countless articles that have been written on how the victory has brought back a feeling of dignity and pride to all of us Egyptians and what we can do to develop Egyptian Nasrallahs of our own! In the middle of all of this, I found the article by Adel Esmat in the issue of 24 August, 2006 of Rose Al Yousef newspaper. The article is in Arabic, so I’ll try to translate some excerpts:

On Hizballah and Hamas’s Popularity: is there any competition?

What is the significance of Hizballah and Hamas’s unprecedented popularity these days? This popularity mainly means that Arab populations have an overwhelming desire to defeat Israel or to seek revenge from it at the very least. What they do not understand is that a total victory cannot be achieved in the military field alone. They do not even understand that military superiority itself is the end result of progress in many other fields. They do not understand that building the inside is the first step to confronting your enemies and that developing our countries is what will make the difference in the long run!

Our people’s absolute support for Hizballah and Hamas reveals a desperate and hasty way of thinking…and shows that we are gripped by focusing on the temporary situation without thinking of the long term consequences….

Our blind support to HA and Hamas means that there is a popular mood that does not recognize what a popular state is, and what its limits are. A culture that does not care about building state institutions, that is not worried about corruption and does not give priority to the value of spreading of democracy or of internal development. It’s a culture that always looks to the outside and places the blame on enemies and does not see the need to look at its flaws: since it does not make any mistakes and is innocent of all sins. Only others are to blame for our backwardness….A culture that gives priority to confrontation without thinking of the consequences.

(A culture that will lead us to) blindly follow Hizballah and Hamas, agreeing to all their decisions, no matter what they do, so at the end our role becomes to only glorify their actions and sing their praises, singing songs of resistance while carrying their leaders on our shoulders, carrying banners saying “Islam is the solution” and “ Resistance is the solution”.

I hope the translation wasn’t too bad. I think it was a good article and I completely share the writer’s thoughts. I have always thought that our priority should go to fixing our problems and building our societies. And I really think that the blind support Egyptians and Arabs are giving to Hizballah is not in their interests.