The Bahraini Revolution in the Words of its Elite

By Zeinab Daher

With every anniversary of an uprising against oppression, a person recalls a glimpse of hope that the winds of change are blowing again.

Bahrain, the country of Shia-majority ruled by Sunni-minority, was a platform for peaceful popular demands back on February 14 of 2011. Today, there is nothing more honest than the words of those who lived the revolution, its early days, and the impressions they made as such time has passed over the first day since its birth.

In an exclusive interview with al-Ahed News, Sheikh Abo Yasser Abdullah al-Saleh, Deputy Chief of Bahrain’s Islamic Work Association (Amal), listed the many achievements of the revolution atop of which is the clear popular alignment against the oppressive and dictatorial authorities that is a major achievement in Bahrain.

 

“The opposition in Bahrain is deep-rooted, it is nothing new, but the current impression is that the opposition is something new.”

In the 1980s, before and after the victory of the Islamic Revolution, demanding to topple the Al Khalifah regime was a fantasy. Now, however, there is a sort of popular agreement that this family should be changed because it doesn’t deserve to rule the Bahraini people, and that the Bahraini people deserve more just government, that is finer, more aware of the demands of peoples and more independent, afar from any foreign and western alliances.

Additionally, in Bahrain, there became a clear orientation and understanding by all parties that it is necessary to establish a just democracy through inclusive elections that get rid of all kinds of tyranny and appropriation as well as ties to the foreign colonialism practiced by Al Khalifah.

The revolution was able over 8 years to draw attention that there is a major determination by the Bahraini people to reach their rightful and legitimate demands and that it is never possible to play the minds of people and deceive them just like what happened during the 1990s uprising.

“There is total agreement that this authority in untrustworthy and can’t be dealt with by any means, even if it still controls the country.”

Another achievement is uniting the local lines and tending to a true change which wasn’t clear in the past era. This revolution has serious tendency to change the country’s status and make a true shift that suits the Bahraini people.

The Al Khalifah authority treat the opposition as if it is a zero. It is oppressive and try to kill any activism before it is born.

“The glow of revolution didn’t change.”

It is true that the protests in which the majority of people used to participate are not happening now. The figures and major symbols who used to participate in the protests are not there, but the movement itself didn’t stop, even if the momentum has decreased. There are still protests and demands in some places. There are also detentions, since the beginning of the revolutions, detentions didn’t stop. If the authority claims that it has got rid of the revolution, then why it is still carrying out the non-stopping arbitrary detention campaigns.

There are some 930 people, including clerics, symbols, academics, youth and citizens, whose citizenships have been revoked. More than 7824 people are detained by the authority, and the number is still climbing. We sacrificed more than 200 martyrs, scores of victims and thousands of displaced people. But the Al Khalifah authority couldn’t, through all this, to prove that it has got rid of the February 14 revolution. The revolution is being renewed in different ways and remains with the same slogans and demands.

The most important among all is that the Bahraini people didn’t retreat any of its legitimate demands. And the latest statement made by His Eminence Sheikh Isa Qassim was a clear evidence that this people didn’t and will not compromise.

Why remaining peaceful?

The Bahraini people is not a violent one. The people of Bahrain are known for love, peace, mercy, generosity, containing others and coexisting with them.

The rightful demands the Bahraini people are asking for are not new for any people, they are rather part of their basic due rights whether by understanding or another mean. When the Al Khalifah denies the people their rights, it must expect that the people won’t remain silent. And now, they insist to fulfill their demands.

For our people, we would like to stress that the international situation in this particular anniversary is on our side and it is not on Al Khalifah’s and Al Saud’s. They were previously more arrogant and stronger, but the situation in the entire region now carries the promises of a near victory, by God’s willing. It carries the promises of a change in the regional map. The Bahraini people tolerated over many years, but the less has remained. The Al Khalifah authorities are in a bad situation while the morale, practices and rights of our people are way stronger than ever before. The legendary endurance presented by the Bahraini people over the past years is able to drive them towards fulfilling their demands. It is matter of a little patience and we will reach our goals.

We are demanding democracy and inclusive elections in which the source of authority and sovereignty should be the Bahraini people. We only need to be a free people in an independent state.

Normalization

Normalization is nothing new. It has existed since before, at least all Gulf states, most Arab and Muslim countries related to the west, whether the US or the UK, have sorts of ties with the “Israeli” entity. However, ties today became public. What has been under cover, became today public.

Exchanged visits weren’t born recently, they are since the 1950s but they were low. The King Saud’s condition for the UK was that ties with the Zionists should be secret. Today, however, the Zionists set their condition that any price should be paid in exchange of public relations. This is the reason why we notice today public relations whether with the Al Saud or the Al Khalifah governments or others. Zionists now insist on publicized ties, this is why we are witnessing them on the surface.

In the past, the colonial scheme tried to indirectly run its issues in the region. But now, it is being faced by the peoples of the region, which are looking for their interests and trying to build their future the way they want. This is why the government now cannot fulfill the task and this explains with the Americans and the British are coming to the region repeatedly, weighing more and intervening much than before in the country’s internal affairs which is exposing those governments’ betrayal.

To Al Khalifah, the Bahraini people would never accept dealing with Zionists and would never be part of any alliance against its Arab and Muslim state. You can do whatever you want because the decision is in your hands, but the Bahraini people will breach any agreement that would be made with the Zionist entity.

For his part, Bahraini Journalist Hussein Youssef recalled some painful and emotional spots from the time of the revolution’s first days:

Among the most significant of the scenes of the February 14 revolution I recall is the youths’ advance as they were topless against the Bahraini army’s tanks that were supposed to protect the protesters and civilians, however, they were directed towards them and killed martyr Abdul Rida Bou Hmayyed. This scene would never be erased from the Bahrainis’ memory.

Another scene that I could never forget over seven years of the revolution is that of revoking the citizenship of Ayatollah Sheikh Isa Ahmad Qassim and the Imam Hussein-inspired speech delivered by Sayyed Maji al-Mashaal.

In between the two scenes, there is the very important event when Sheikh Ali Salman addressed the Bahraini people as the ‘Peninsula Shield forces’ entered the country. He referred to their behavior as defeatist and called the Bahraini people for sticking to peaceful activism until achieving its fair demands.

“Regarding the presence of the Bahraini issue in media, the activism is actually peaceful, political and rightful. There is no direct presence on which media can feed as it wants.”

However, there are other media outlets that are trying to turn a blind eye to the reality of the Bahraini people for certain political goals and reasons. They want to blind what is happening in Bahrain, and most of them are pushed by Saudi and American motives. This is something constant for us. An evidence is that many political and rights events, major protests, political speeches and stances issued by the Bahraini opposition are blinded by such paid outlets.

I don’t believe the regime has succeeded in silencing the opposition. Now, everybody confesses that there is a political crisis in Bahrain. The important evidence on this is that the leader of the opposition His Eminence Sheikh Ali Salman is in prison and sentenced to life. This firstly means that the political crisis in Bahrain will remain as long as such symbols and figures, atop of them is Sheikh Ali Salman, stay in jail. Hence, the opposition movement is non-stopping in different forms and during different circumstances. It is sometimes in Australia, another time in Bahrain… the movement is represented by the rights and political conferences held by the opposition at home and abroad. In conclusion, even if the regime had security-wise tightened the grip on the opposition movement, this doesn’t mean that it will be able to cancel the presence of the opposition and the popular demands.

There are huge numbers over the 8 years of revolution. There has been more than 40.000 protests, in addition to more than 5000 prisoners in Bahraini jails. This number makes Bahrain the most crowded country with political prisoners in the Arab world as per comparison to its population. There are also violations against journalists. Over 8 years of revolution, there is more than 25 years of imprisonment sentences against activists and journalists and even politicians who expressed their opinions. The law is very ‘flexible’ since whoever express their opinion via Twitter are subject to ‘anti-terror’ crimes for opposing the authority.

The international community raises the slogans of human rights in the area of political abuse and not in the place where people do believe in it… the international community is disabled in front of the Saudi-American decision; hence, the political cover baking the Bahraini regime is due to weighing political interests and Gulf oil heavier than human rights and the people’s rights to self-determination.

“All what happened over the previous period (8 years) is a motive for Bahrain to continue.”

The words of Sheikh Ali Salman and Ayatollah Sheikh Isa Ahmad Qassem say there is no way for retreat, and it is necessary to continue with strength and determination to fulfill this people’s demand for reform.

“I do believe that what is waiting the Bahraini people is way better than what the authorities are practicing.”

There is no room for political settlement and fulfilling the national demands without democracy and respecting citizenship in Bahrain, he concluded.

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Bahrain opposition begins armed resistance against ‘Saudi occupation’ – English Subs

February 08, 2019

Note: this is the first time I am posting a video by the Middle-East Observer which has now joined the Saker Community (translations) and who will be providing us Arab-language videos translated and subtitled in English.  Please see under this video how to support the Middle-East Observer and stay in contact.  Please support this work generously!

The Saker

Original description:  A prominent Bahraini opposition leader says his al-Wefaq movement has begun carrying out increasingly sophisticated armed resistance operations against the ruling al-Khalifa government and the “Saudi occupation”. Sayyed Murtada al-Sanadi said that the ruling al-Khalifa monarchy and its Saudi backers gave no opportunity for dialogue or negotiations despite eight years of peaceful protests by the opposition. Source: Etejah TV (YouTube) Date: 24 January, 2019 ———————————————————————————————————–

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Memories Of The Days Of Struggle & Revolution

By Mokhtar Haddad

Iranian journalist Seyed Ismail Alawi Yakana is a revolutionary who lived through the days of the Islamic Revolution. Because of his participation in the struggle against the Shah’s regime, he spent nearly three years in the SAVAK prisons.

He was also an activist during the revolution and educated a number of its men.

During the period of the sacred defense, he was present as a journalist and a fighter along the frontlines. He was responsible for reporting on the sacred defense for an Iranian newspaper during those days. Today, he still works in the same field, seeking to spread the values of the Islamic Revolution and the sacred defense among the new generation.

On the occasion of the 40th anniversary of the victory of the Islamic Revolution, Al-Ahed website met with Seyed Ismail Alawi to ask him about the days of struggle and victory.

Q: How would you describe the Islamic Revolution, which you lived through?

A: I must talk about the start of this revolutionary movement and its peak. There are things that led the people to resent and oppose the former regime.

The incident involving the publication of an article that was offensive to Imam Khomeini in late 1977 in a regime-run newspaper was the spark that ignited this popular resentment and anger toward the Shah’s regime.

It is true that Imam Khomeini’s uprising began in 1963, after which he was exiled. But the peak of the popular movement and the start of the final drive that eventually led to the overthrow of the tyrannical regime began after the publication of the offensive article. But before that, there was revolutionary activity by activists, which was suppressed by the Shah and his police system.

Following the publication of the article, the residents of the holy city of Qom rose against this abusive measure. The Iranian people regard the holy city of Qom as a religious symbol. The revolutionaries were religious and the revolution was of religious nature. All the people had religious tendencies.

The demands of the religious revolutionaries represented the demands of all the Iranian people and even the rest of the elites and sects in society.

The former regime had such an experience. On June 4, 1963, when Imam Khomeini was arrested and the scholars were insulted, the next day they carried out a major uprising in Tehran and across various cities. The struggle was ongoing, but the regime was suppressing it.

It is true that the regime suppressed the June 5, 1963 uprising. But the revolutionaries formed a revolutionary nucleus for the political or armed struggle. In the early 1970s, we witnessed the regime’s crackdown on the revolutionaries. But the revolutionaries did not retreat.

Then, in the mid 1970s, the political struggle escalated in universities and mosques.

In late 1977, after the publication of that offensive article, the Shah’s regime was surprised by the reaction of the people.

I remember even some of the revolutionaries believed that revolutionary action needed extensive work. But when the people rose up, everyone was surprised with the speed.  Some did not expect the people to overthrew the Shah that quickly.

Q: Why did the Islamic Revolution accelerate?

A: First, the Shah’s regime did not pay attention to the demands of the people. But there is another important point which is the love for Imam Khomeini. The Iranian people loved Imam Khomeini. This was thanks to God Almighty.

Q: The Shah’s regime was dependent on America and the West. Even Carter, who visited Iran during the regime’s final last months, described the country as the island of stability. Why did the monarchy collapse?

A: The former regime was the front line, countering the influence of the former Soviet Union with the support of the West. During the Cold War, they considered Iran an important state for them. And the Westerners were supporting the Shah.

When the West wanted the help of its allied countries, including the countries in the NATO alliance, it was done through the Shah’s regime since it was trusted by the West and was regarded as the region’s policeman.

The Shah relied on this support and thought that in case of any popular movement he would be fully supported.

Q: In this context, we see that in the final days of the Shah’s regime, Washington sent its special envoy, General Robert Huyzer. What was this man’s mission in Tehran?

A: America sent General Robert Huyzer to maintain the Shah’s regime and carry out a military coup as it did in the fifties. This is all documented, even in the memoirs of this American general.

Huyzer was tasked with supporting the Shah and maintaining his regime. Before that the American spies who used to work in the US Embassy in Tehran had prepared for him all the polls and statistics for him to carry out the mission.

But he saw that the armed forces were not prepared to carry out this mission and massacre the people, so his mission failed.

Many members of the armed forces, including Air Force officers, joined the people.

Q: But America came up with new plans to target the revolution.

A: Using several schemes, Washington wanted to deter the Islamic Revolution because the victory of the revolution had damaged the interests of Washington in the region.

The Islamic Revolution was inspiring to the people. The Zionist enemy was occupying Islamic countries. During that stage, we saw an Islamic awakening that was confronting the Zionist plan. Therefore, we see that the Islamic Revolution has become the inspiration for the resistance, revolutionaries and the people in the region.

This led to growing concerns by the Zionists and the Americans. Washington became concerned about the future and the fate of the Zionist entity.

I remember that in the first months of the revolution’s victory there were rallies in which they were asked to go to Palestine to support the Palestinian people.

We saw the “Israeli” Embassy in Tehran transformed into the Palestinian Embassy in the first week of the Islamic Revolution.

Therefore, we saw that the Americans and the Zionists carried out many plans in the first months of the revolution’s victory in order to limit the revolution to slogans and internal issues. Therefore, they activated the separatist movements such as the events in Kurdistan province in which Saddam’s regime and other regional regimes played a large role. But these projects failed.

After the failure of this project and the revolutionary forces overcoming the internal problems, they came up with another plan, which is to impose Saddam’s war on Iran.

Q: Why did Imam Khomeini from the start of his uprising raise slogans greater than Iran, like supporting the Palestinian people against the Zionist enemy?

A: This is due to the cultural and religious nature of the Islamic Revolution. It was not only focused on internal issues or economic issues. This revolution had wide and comprehensive goals and visions. Imam Khomeini’s first speech during the sixties in the holy city of Qom and the beginning of the uprising is the most evident proof of this. He raised issues such as the Muslim awakening and confronting the colonial and Zionist schemes, etc.

Q: How did you enter the revolutionary work and why did the Shah’s regime arrest you?

A: Religious circles were directly related to the revolution and the revolutionaries. When a person participates in the activities in the mosque, Hussainiya or places where the Holy Quran was taught, his sense of fighting the corrupt regime of the Shah strengthens since Islam and the Quran both stress the importance of standing up to the oppressor. We saw that the policies of the Shah’s regime were contrary to the teachings and objectives of Islam.

When I started the revolutionary work I was 15 years old during which I experienced this atmosphere. I met the leaders of the revolution during those days, including Ayatollah Khamenei, martyr Ayatollah Beheshti and engineer Mahdi Bazarkan. We learned and were inspired by them. So, I entered the revolutionary work. We worked in the mosques and Hussainiyas, spreading the ideas of Imam Khomeini and distributing His Eminense’s statements and messages.

Then we founded a revolutionary student group. We were, then, arrested by the SAVAK and spent about three years in prison.

In prisons, revolutionaries were subjected to the most severe forms of torture. There were people in the SAVAK who specialized in the implementation of systematic torture.

In 1971, the Shah established a joint committee between the SAVAK and the police to counter sabotage as he claimed. The committee had a very scary prison that housed the revolutionaries who were arrested. They were also tortured.

I was detained for a while in that prison.

Q: What sort of relationship did the SAVAK have with the Mossad and the CIA in confronting the revolutionaries?

A: It is natural that there be a relationship between the SAVAK and the Mossad and the CIA because the Shah had a close relationship with the United States and the Zionist entity. So, both the Mossad and the CIA used to transfer their security experiences to the SAVAK.

As you know, some of our revolutionaries used to go to Palestine and Lebanon for training. So the Mossad sent these people’s information to the SAVAK.

Q: Do you have some memories of the last days before the victory of the revolution and the day Imam Khomeini returned to the country?

A: I was one of the members of Imam Khomeini’s reception committee. I was in the third circle to safeguard the security of the Imam. We were positioned in the Paradise of Zahra (PBUH) cemetery where Imam Khomeini was supposed to deliver a speech honoring the revolution’s martyrs. We were there for 10 nights and days. We had concerns of acts of vandalism that might be carried out by the regime during the Imam’s reception ceremony.

And I remember one of the brothers, a Lebanese revolutionary. His name was Shaher. He trained our group, which was made up of 100 people, in order to maintain the security of the Paradise of Zahra (PBUH).

Imam Khomeini’s reception was historic. Millions of people lined up from Maharabad Airport to Freedom Square and Revolution Street until the Paradise of Zahra (PBUH). It was the final victory of the revolution. I still remember the happiness and joy on the faces of the people that day.

AI: Verdict on Bahrain’s Salman Is Bitter Blow to Freedom of Expression

Local Editor

Amnesty International slammed Bahrain’s verdict on opposition leader Sheikh Ali Salman.

Responding to the news that Bahrain’s Court of Cassation has upheld the conviction of opposition leader Sheikh Ali Salman, Amnesty International’s Middle East Campaigns Director Samah Hadid said:

“Today’s verdict is yet another nail in the coffin for the right to freedom of expression in Bahrain and exposes the country’s justice system as a complete farce. The decision to uphold Sheikh Ali Salman’s conviction and life prison sentence following an unfair trial highlights the authorities’ determination to silence critical voices”.

She went on to say, “The Bahraini authorities must quash Sheikh Ali Salman’s conviction and release him immediately and unconditionally. They should also rescind the decision to dissolve the two opposition political groups, al-Wefaq and Wa’ad, and guarantee the right of everyone to freedom of association”.

Sheikh Ali Salman has been repeatedly arrested and charged for his perceived critical views of the authorities.

On 4 November 2018, he was sentenced to life imprisonment after being convicted of alleged trumped-up spying charges. Two other al-Wefaq members, Ali al-Aswad and Sheikh Hassan Sultan, were convicted in their absence during the same trial.

On 28 January 2019, Bahrain’s Al Khalifa regime’s Supreme Court upheld a life term over the alleged “spying” for Qatar.

Source: AI, Edited by website team

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نقاط على الحروف تحية للمبادرة الشيوعية… إلى الأمام

الشيوعي ينجح في تحرّكه الأول: نحو العصيان؟

ديسمبر 17, 2018

ناصر قنديل

– لبنانيون كثر لا يشاركون الحزب الشيوعي اللبناني الكثير من مواقفه ونظرته للكثير من الملفات أثلجت صدورهم مبادرة الشيوعيين للخروج المنظم إلى الشارع لرفع البطاقة الحمراء للنظام السياسي والاقتصادي أمام أزمة اجتماعية خانقة، تدقّ أبواب الفقراء وذوي الدخل المحدود والشباب العاطلين عن العمل، بيد قاسية مع اقتراب مواسم البرد والشتاء. والفرح بالمبادرة الشيوعية نابع من عوامل عدة على الشيوعيين الانتباه إليها والاستثمار عليها، للمضي قدماً وصولاً لتحقيق غايات لا يجهضها خروج الحكومة إلى النور، ولا تجعل صرختهم مجرد ومضة عابرة.

– في البلد يقين بأن المعالجات للشأن الاقتصادي والمالي والاجتماعي منحازة بقوة إلى جانب حيتان المال، ويقين بأن الفساد يخترق أغلب القوى السياسية الممثلة في السلطة، بما فيها تلك التي هي قيد الولادة، وبأن التقاسم للمغانم والمكاسب والمناصب، في خلفية أغلب الخلافات السياسية، بما فيها تعقيدات ولادة الحكومة المنتظرة منذ شهور، ويقين بأن شيئاً جذرياً لن يتغير بولادتها سوى الحركة التي يمكن أن تدب نسبياً في آلة الدولة الصدئة والمعطلة، يقابل ذلك قلق من أيّ تحرك تقوده قوى غامضة، ربما تنتهي في أحضان المسؤولين سياسياً أو اقتصادياً عن الأزمة برشوة هنا أو مكسب فئوي هناك، أو تنتهي بفوضى تجعل كل حراك واسع صندوق بريد للرسائل في الداخل والخارج، أو تنتهي بتصنيف طائفي أو فئوي للحراك يقيد انفتاحه على كل الشعب اللبناني. وهذه مخاوف لا يطمئنها لكون التحرّك بقيادة الشيوعيين، الموجودين خارج جنة الحكم والمصالح.

– المطلوب من الشيوعيين وقد حازوا من الذين لم يشاركونهم تحرّك الأمس، لكنهم صفقوا لهم بقلوبهم، إدراك الحاجة للمواظبة والمثابرة، كل أحد على حراك مشابه، سينضم إليه المزيد فالمزيد كلما أظهر الشيوعيون قدرة على إثبات ما ينتظره منهم اللبنانيون، طغيان لبنانيتهم على شيوعيتهم، اي العلم اللبناني والنشيد الوطني اللبناني، والهتافات الجامعة للبنانيين، والترفع عن الحزبية العصبية، وكلما أظهروا استعداداً للانفتاح على قيادة جماعية للتحرّك تسعى لضم كل من يبدي استعداداً للمشاركة، وخصوصاً الخصوم العقائديين والسياسيين للحزب، فالكثير من العقائديين القوميين والإسلاميين والكتائبيين كانو أمس يصفقون للشيوعيين عدا الكثير من القيادات النقابية والشعبية ومنظمات مدنية. وهذا لم يحدث من قبل، والتقاط اللحظة يستدعي توجيه دعوة منزهة عن الكسب الضيق للجميع، الجميع دون استثناء وبأسمائهم، وقياداتهم، ليكونوا قبل الأحد المقبل في لقاء تشاوري جامع واسع عنوانه: كيف نطلق حراكاً هادفاً للتغيير الاقتصادي والاجتماعي لا يخضع لمساومات وصفقات جانبية مع النظام السياسي والاقتصادي، وتحديد المطالب الواضحة والفعالة التي لا تراجع دون نيلها، والدعوة بنهاية اللقاء وفقاً لبيان يحمل تواقيع الحضور، لأحد لبناني يجمع الساحات من 8 و14 آذار، تحت العنوان الاجتماعي، حيث الشيوعيون ضمانة عدم الانقسام كما عدم التطييف وعدم التسييس، والأهم عدم الذهاب إلى خراب الفوضى.

– الفرص التاريخية تأتي مرة واحدة ولا تنتظر، وقد دقّ الحزب الشيوعي باب فرصة تاريخية أمس، ستجعل له مكانة في كتابة تاريخ جديد للبنان، إن أحسن التعامل معها، وأول شروط التقاط الفرص التاريخية، السرعة والترفع والتواضع والصدق، وتلك ميزات لا ينقص الشيوعين إدراكها أو توفيرها، فهي بعض مما يُنتظر منهم.

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France: Thousands of ’Yellow Vests’ Hit French Streets in 5th Week of Protests

Local Editor

Thousands of protesters took to the streets of French cities on Saturday in the fifth weekend of nationwide demonstrations against French President Emmanuel Macron’s government, despite calls to hold off after a gun attack in Strasbourg earlier this week.

In Paris, police were out in force to contain possible outbursts of violence.

Numbers were down compared to Saturday last week, a police source said.

Teargas was fired at small groups of protesters in brief clashes with riot police near the Champs-Elysees.

The ‘yellow vest’ movement started in mid-November with protests at junctions and roundabouts against fuel tax increases, but quickly became a wider mobilization against Macron’s economic policies.

Successive weekends of protests in Paris have led to vandalism and violent clashes with security forces.

The Interior Minister said around 69,000 police were active on Saturday with a reinforced presence in the cities of Toulouse, Bordeaux and Saint-Etienne.

A police source told Reuters some 16,000 protesters had been counted in France, excluding Paris, by 1100 GMT, compared to 22,000 at the same time on Dec. 8.

In Paris, where groups of hundreds of protesters marched in splintered groups in several neighborhoods, 85 had been arrested by around midday, according to a Paris police official.

On Friday, Macron called for a return to calm in France after nearly a month of protests by the so-called ‘yellow vest’ movement against his government’s policies. The demonstrations have hit growth and caused widespread disruption.

“France needs calm, order and a return to normal,” Macron said, after a meeting of European Union leaders in Brussels.

In a televised address to the nation earlier on Monday, Macron announced wage rises for the poorest workers and tax cuts for pensioners in further concessions meant to end the movement but many said they would maintain pressure.

The French government, as well as several unions and opposition politicians called on protesters to stay off the streets on Saturday, after four people were killed in a gun attack at a Christmas market in the historic city of Strasbourg.

Source: News Agencies, Edited by website team

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The revolutionary chaos is a French heritage الفوضى الثورية ميراث فرنسي

The revolutionary chaos is a French heritage

ديسمبر 12, 2018

Written by Nasser Kandil,

It is enough to notice the chaos and violence which accompanied the French Revolution from 1789 to 1793 including incursions, executions, clashes, thefts, burning of palaces, buildings, shops, and closing of roads to discover the association of violence and chaos with every revolutionary action in the history of France. It is not a source of astonishment or a strange thing far from the French “civilized” scene that has empty-headed language that finds its roots in glorifying France and Paris in particular as a city of lights, perfumes and fashion.

In the French history, the revolutionary events were associated with chaos and violence till the chaos turned into a theory of European- French,-Russian- German origin but with dominant French roots. The revolutionary events usually have two accompanying conditions; First, their relation with major external events and transformations in a status of a great country as France that has colonial policies and a party in the international wars. Second, the presence of social leaders and groups who came to France from non-French nationality, they appear among the ranks of rebels and they often occupy a leading position among them. Therefore, the analysts fell into naivety in reading the revolutionary event due to the difference of nationalities and their positions in the revolutions as a reason for describing the revolution as a coup on behalf of external parties once German and many times American.

The French history from the French Revolution to the Revolution of 1870, the birth of Paris Commune as the first popular government that run the French capital or the global capital for sixty years, and the student protest in 1968 made the scene of Storming of the Bastille and the escape of prisoners and the accompanying chaos an associating scene in every revolutionary action. Furthermore the voice of Marie Antoinette the wife of King Louis XVI who said as narrated by Jean-Jacques Rousseau if the poor do not find bread , they can eat cake can be heard at every revolutionary action in the streets of Paris, even if the end was not dramatic as it was with the execution of Marie Antoinette.

Whenever there were revolutions in the history of France, they ended with the restoration of the traditional regime but in new form accompanied by difficult changes in the international situation of France and the inability of the rulers to provide a situation that preserves the French dignity and keeps France away from the humiliation of refraction which is accompanied by chaos and violence. The non-French people were playing a pivotal role in mobilizing, organizing, and leading them through considering Paris a global capital not as a capital of global country. Poverty, hunger, protest of students and trade unions and the attempt to innovate a new life style, new organization, and a new theory were always there, but the most important thing was the presence of a ruler who was promoted as a dazzling phenomenon that reveals intolerable vanity.

The Yellow vests movement in France is a reaction of the natural law, because every action has a reaction of the same kind and strength but in the opposite way. This exactly applies on the elements of surprise, mystery, and speed between Emanuel Macron and the Yellow vests movement. Violence, chaos, the difficult situations of the French external policy, the social crises resulting from the decline of the colonial status of France, the emergence of poverty and hunger, and the presence of non-French groups in streets are French features of every revolutionary situation of a global capital. But what is new is that this phenomenon is an interpretation of the development of the communication media and the revolution of information in making the revolutions of the twenty-first century and a French popular fragrance that will be a global trend in this century.

Translated by Lina Shehadeh,

الفوضى الثورية ميراث فرنسي

ديسمبر 10, 2018

ناصر قنديل

تكفي العودة لمستويات الفوضى والعنف التي لازمت الثورة الفرنسية الأم عام 1789 والتي شهدت في محطاتها المختلفة وصولاً حتى العام 1793 اقتحامات وإعدامات وتصادمات، وخلالها جميعاً سرقات وإحراق قصور ومبانٍ ومتاجر وإقفال طرقات، لاكتشاف متلازمة العنف والفوضى مع كل عمل ثوري في تاريخ فرنسا. وعدم أخذ هذا البعد كمصدر للذهول والحديث عن غرابته على مشهد فرنسي «حضاري» مستمدّ توصيفه من لغة بلهاء تجد جذورها في تمجيد فرنسا وباريس خصوصاً، كمدينة ليلية للأضواء والعطور والأزياء.

في التاريخ الفرنسي تلازمت الأحداث الثورية مع الفوضى والعنف حتى تحوّلت الفوضوية إلى نظرية ذات منشأ أوروبي فرنسي روسي ألماني، لكن بجذور وتفسيرات فرنسية طاغية، لكن الأحداث الثورية لم تكن يوماً بعيدة عن شرطين مرافقين لها، الأول هو اتصالها بوجود أحداث وتحولات خارجية كبرى في مكانة دولة كبرى كفرنسا، ذات سياسات استعمارية، وطرف في حروب دولية، والثاني وجود قادة وشرائح اجتماعية وافدين إلى فرنسا من غير الجنسية الفرنسية يظهرون في صفوف الثوار، وغالباً ما يحتلون مكانة قيادية بينهم، وفي الغالب أيضاً يقع المحللون في سذاجة قراءة الحدث الثوري بخلفية جنسياتهم، ومكانتهم في الثورات، كمدخل لتوصيف الثورة كعمل انقلابي لحساب خارج ما، ألماني مرة وأميركي مرات.

في التاريخ الفرنسي أيضاً من الثورة الفرنسية الأم إلى ثورة عام 1870 وولادة كومونة باريس، كأول حكومة شعبية أدارت العاصمة الفرنسية، أو عاصمة عالمية، لستين يوماً، ومن بعدها ثورة الطلاب عام 1968، ما يجعل رؤية مشهد اقتحام الباستيل، وخروج السجناء وما رافقه من فوضى، كخلفية متحركة في كل تكرار للوضع الثوري، وما يجعل سماع صدى صوت ماري انطوانيت زوجة الملك لويس السادس عشر، صاحبة القول، كما رواه جان جاك روسو، إن لم يجد الفقراء خبزاً فليأكلوا الكعك، في كل محطة من محطات التحركات الثورية في شوارع باريس، حتى لو تكن النهاية درامية كما هي مع إعدام ماري أنطوانيت.

في تاريخ فرنسا ليست هناك دائماً ثورات، لكن كلما كانت هناك ثورات كانت تنتهي باستعادة النظام التقليدي لحيويته بصيغة جديدة، وكانت ترافق محطاتها حالات التغير الصعب في ظرف فرنسا الدولي وعجز الحكام عن تقديم تأقلم يحفظ الكرامة الفرنسية ويجنب فرنسا ذل الانكسار، وكان يرافقها الكثير الكثير من العنف والفوضى، وكان يلعب غير الفرنسيين دوراً مفصلياً في تحشيدها وتنظيمها وقيادتها، باعتبار باريس عاصمة عالمية وليس بصفتها مجرد كونها عاصمة لدولة عالمية، لكن دائماً كان هناك الفقر والجوع والطلاب والنقابات، ومحاولة ابتكار لأسلوب جديد، وتنظيم جديد، ونظرية جديدة. والأهم أنه كان دائماً هناك حاكم تمّ تسويقه كظاهرة مبهرة وتكشف عن صناعة مريبة وتفاهة لا تحتمل.

السترات الصفراء في فرنسا هي استجابة للقانون الطبيعي، أنه لكل فعل رد فعل من النوع والقوة ذاتهما ولكن باتجاه معاكس. وهذا ينطبق تماماً على عناصر المفاجأة والغموض والسرعة، التي تجمع بين ظاهرتي أمانويل ماكرون والسترات الصفراء. أما العنف والفوضى والظروف الصعبة للسياسة الفرنسية الخارجية، والأزمات الأجتماعية الناتجة عن تراجع المكانة الاستعمارية لفرنسا، وظهور الفقر والجوع، وحضور الجماعات غير الفرنسية الأصل في الشارع، فكلها لا تفيد شيئاً في تفسير الخصوصية، لأنها سمات فرنسية لكل وضع ثوري في تاريخها كعاصمة عالمية. الجديد هو أن الظاهرة ترجمة فرنسية لتطوّر شبكات التواصل وثورة المعلوماتية في صناعة ثورات القرن الحادي والعشرين، ونكهة عطر باريسي شعبي سيصير موضة عالمية في هذا القرن، ولعله يكون مناسباً لكل من يريد الدخول على خط هذه الثورات، ويقوم بشراء الماركة وبيعها في أسواق جديدة.

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