North Africa, West Asia

Whatever is happening to the Egyptians?

Why are so many Egyptians no longer challenging the structures of power in the country? Join the debate

21 December 2016

Mohamed El-Shahed/AFP/Getty Images. All rights reserved.

As the Egyptian economy delves deeper into crisis, society is increasingly fragmented.

“Urban vs. rural centres. Very similar dynamic to the French revolution. Paris was leading. This could also be tied to the classist view held of rural areas.”

Why can't the elite come out of this mindset and challenge the structures of power that ensure these oppressive and unjust systems remain in place?

“So far in Egypt it hasn’t been a revolution.. there was no social content to the movement. Is there anywhere where a revolution doesn't want to rule? No one wants to rule?”

The rich are living more extravagantly than ever, further isolating themselves from the day-to-day reality of the majority of Egyptians.

“As soon as the poor rise, the rich will support any powers that will crush them.”

This is the upper class that has historically ruled politically and economically, while the majority of Egyptians are now struggling more than ever to put food on the table.

“The Egyptian upper class lives in a bubble, but this bubble is getting bigger and as it does more competition appears and there is even an inner hierarchy between them… even if we disapprove of their lifestyles we should be concerned as this class is the one ruling us politically and economically.”

Will this continue to be the case with despite the responsibility of the Egyptian military in the deteriorating economy?

“Even the Egyptian upper class has been affected by the military’s intervention in the economy and the plummeting of the Egyptian Pound, yet they remain the staunchest supporters of the current regime allowing fear of the unknown to control their decisions.”

Can this bubble continue? What effects will these attitudes have on generations to come and the future of Egypt?

“The elite have not developed their thought patterns. They are stuck in a mindset.”

As part of the Middle East Forum sessions, participants posed the question: “Why can't the elite come out of this mindset and challenge the structures of power that ensure these oppressive and unjust systems remain in place?”

“After everything we have been through, I feel we have gone back 10 years... there is still no social movement. The uprising was not radical enough.”

Do you have any thoughts about these issues? Share with us your opinion, position, criticism, and arguments in the comment section below, or send us a longer contribution here.

Read some of our best articles on this issue here:

On megalomania and despair: is Sisi really nuts?

بين هوس العَظمة واليأس، هل فقد السيسي صوابه؟

Whatever happened to the Egyptians, Pt.4: would-be aristocrats

Whatever is happening to the Egyptians, Pt. 5: colonizing Egyptian bodies

A fascist history of the Egyptian revolution III: phase two, from the numinous to the real

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