Bloggers Dissent

Greetings, loyal minions. Your Maximum Leader sees an item on the news wire about Egyptian bloggers and how they are spearheading the dissenters against Hosni Mubarak.

As many others have said, and perhaps we’ve said here, blogging, the internet, and the spread of access to information has a remarkably transformative affect on societies around the world. The roughly 300 or so bloggers in Egypt are not much of an “opposition” at this point. Even the article says that the blogs are only read among the elites. (One imagines internet access in many places of Egypt is a problem…) But from these small beginnings come the serious alternatives to oppressive regimes.

From the 1950s to the 1980s the dissenters in the Eastern Bloc were writers of underground newspapers and broadsheets. They were to poets who gave clandestine readings. They were the quiet voices. But they spoke nonetheless. By the time the 1990s came around those dissenters became politicians, prime ministers, and presidents.

It is a hopeful sign, these bloggers in Egypt. One can only hope that the government doesn’t block the internet sites or otherwise move to crack down on the authors.

Carry on.

1 Comment

A cautious thought to temper your endorsement, ML: the linked article is vague about the political beliefs of these Egyptian bloggers. Egypt is repressive, but it is also westernized. Do you display the same enthusiasm for their efforts if they’re advocating a return to Islamic Fundamentalism? Just because they use the internet doesn’t make them liberal democrats (by definition of political tradition, not American political party).

Definitely in opposition to Mubarek are the fundamentalists who have been staging attacks against foreign tourists. Are your opposition bloggers and these terrorists on the same side? Does it matter? Any preference, ML? There is a serious debate to be had about how America should face the threat of growing anti-westernism, but nothing in our discussion of foreign policy suggests we as a nation are capable of having it. The Egyptian opposition is largely fundamentalist and largely anti-western: what is the U.S. going to do if Egypt becomes the next Iran?

Well, based on the new Constitution, Iraq is probably going to be the next Iran, but I mean after that.



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