THE JUSTICE PROJECT | Blog | Crying in Cairo

Crying in Cairo

Under the law of full-disclosure, commercial television stations must tell the viewer when their station has a financial interest in something they are reporting.

So, with full-disclosure in mind, let me report that I am not an expert in any way, shape, or form on the matters I am commenting on herein. What I am is a human being watching torment in another corner of the world and not willing to simply shuffle off into another corner and cry about it. As the Buddha would remind us, even sadness requires mindfulness. Or, to put another twist on it, the truth does not go into hiding just because we choose to close our eyes.

Across time, all of us learn that falling in love is very different from landing. Democracy’s love affair with the Arab Spring is turning out to be less of a commitment and more of a fling. Egypt’s tears of joy at the wedding of popular uprising and democracy have been reduced singularly to tears.

The hands behind the scenes on every side are trying to maintain power and/or grab power and hidden agendas are barely hidden. What’s not hidden is the suffering. The suffering in Egypt is older than Egypt and as new as the morning news.

The Muslim Brotherhood – who appear to have a narrow view of who they actually think of as a brother – are calling for a return to democracy, burning churches, claiming refuge in mosques, and pushing for a theocracy. If that isn’t head shaking enough, the military say they will return the country to the people but that will have to wait until they are done killing people. And the Liberal wing is liberally cheering on the military.

I have no doubt that foreign policy experts can dissect the situation but none of the egg heads can put poor Humpty back together again. Some policy makers will read my observations and find me naïve. And I am naïve. But sometimes in life being an expert means you are too practiced in your seeing what it is your practice to see. I know this because when I am wrong, I am wrong with conviction.

How I feel is sad and tired of seeing sad at this corner on the planet. I am heart saddened by the political agenda, ploys, and time worn hatreds in this region. No one has a solution because none of the parties want a solution. They want to be right. Unfortunately, the only thing the vying parties want more than being right, is to be victorious. And losers are damned.

Here’s the breaking news, this isn’t news. Crying in Cairo is an old and lamentable story told and retold in the now.

I’d say that the terrors in Syria are being shoved out of the headlines by what is happening in Egypt, but in this neck of the woods death seldom takes a holiday.

And when we don’t hear something negative for a while that doesn’t mean something positive is about to unfold. A child on TV in Syria said he wanted to cut out his neighbor’s heart and eat it. I hear this and wonder what planet I’m on.

Not only don’t I have a just answer I don’t even have something that can pass for just an answer. The problem is home grown. The answer will also have to be home grown. I pray that there will yet be a season for this growth. Tears falling long enough can scar rocks.

Noah benShea
Executive Director
The Justice Project