Thursday, August 30, 2012

A Thugs-eye view of how it works (or used to work) in Egypt

We have heard of “thugs” that do things on behalf of dictators in various countries, but how often do we hear from who those people are or have been thugs, to know how they are recruited, or how they ensure that the dictator gets what he wants?  Sherif Tarek, in Ahram Online published an interview with someone who served the Mubarak dictatorship in Egypt.  

In a way this “thug” reveals that what we supposed is true – that dictators, who seem universally to believe their citizens love them, use strong arm means to ensure that elections demonstrate it  – but for me it was interesting to put a face on the kind of individuals that make it happen, to hear how one of them justifies what he was doing.  

We don’t have to believe all he says about himself to think it is useful to bring his story into the light of day, exposing it to general scrutiny.   That the story can be told reveals how much has changed in Egypt in the last year and a half.

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