Statement on the Massacre in Cairo

[The following statement was originally issued in Arabic by the Egyptian Revolutonary Socialists on 14 August 2013. It was subsequently published in English on Socialist Worker.]

Down with Military Rule! Down with al-Sisi, the Leader of the Counter-Revolution!

The bloody dissolution of the sit-ins in Al-Nahda Square and Raba'a al-Adawiyya is nothing but a massacre—prepared in advance. It aims to liquidate the Muslim Brotherhood. But, it is also part of a plan to liquidate the Egyptian Revolution and restore the military-police state of the Mubarak regime.


A crowd of protestors carries a fallen comrade.

The Revolutionary Socialists did not defend the regime of Mohamed Mursi and the Muslim Brotherhood for a single day. We were always in the front ranks of the opposition to that criminal, failed regime which betrayed the goals of the Egyptian Revolution. It even protected the pillars of the Mubarak regime and its security apparatus, armed forces and corrupt businessmen. We strongly participated in the revolutionary wave of 30 June.

Neither did we defend for a single day the sit-ins by the Brotherhood and their attempts to return Mursi to power.

But we have to put the events of today in their context, which is the use of the military to smash up workers' strikes. We also see the appointment of new provincial governors—largely drawn from the ranks of the remnants of the old regime, the police and military generals. Then there are the policies of General Abdel Fatah Al-Sisi's government. It has adopted a road-map clearly hostile to the goals and demands of the Egyptian revolution, which are freedom, dignity and social justice.

This is the context for the brutal massacre which the army and police are committing. It is a bloody dress rehearsal for the liquidation of the Egyptian Revolution. It aims to break the revolutionary will of all Egyptians who are claiming their rights, whether workers, poor, or revolutionary youth, by creating a state of terror.

However, the reaction by the Muslim Brotherhood and the Salafists in attacking Christians and their churches, is a sectarian crime which only serves the forces of counter-revolution. The filthy attempt to create a civil war, in which Egyptian Christians will fall victims to the reactionary Muslim Brotherhood, is one in which Mubarak's state and Al-Sisi are complicit, who have never for a single day defended the Copts and their churches.

We stand firmly against Al-Sisi's massacres, and against his ugly attempt to abort the Egyptian Revolution. For today's massacre is the first step in the road towards counter-revolution. We stand with the same firmness against all assaults on Egypt's Christians and against the sectarian campaign which only serves the interests of Al-Sisi and his bloody project.

Many who described themselves as liberals and leftists have betrayed the Egyptian Revolution, led by those who took part in Al-Sisi's government. They have sold the blood of the martyrs to whitewash the military and the counter-revolution. These people have blood on their hands.

We, the Revolutionary Socialists, will never deviate for an instant from the path of the Egyptian Revolution. We will never compromise on the rights of the revolutionary martyrs and their pure blood: those who fell confronting Mubarak, those who fell confronting the Military Council, those who fell confronting Mursi's regime, and those who fall now confronting Al-Sisi and his dogs.

Down with military rule!
No the return of the old regime!
No to the return of the Brotherhood!
All power and wealth to the people

Yes there is a sectarian

Yes there is a sectarian crime which only serves the forces of counter-revolution. I see all places are getting ruins of war and nothing is improving.

I would like to learn more

I would like to learn more about the strategic thinking that led the Revolutionary Socialists to join the movement to oust the Morsi government and to call on the army to intervene. Just to put out there some of what I've read: 1)the Tamarud movement was funded by wealthy backers associated with the faloul (the capitalists, bureaucrats, and army officers who were central to maintaining the Mubarak regime); 2)although there was conflict over the timing of elections and debate about the election law, it was likely that elections would be held within a year or so and if Morsi and his followers were so unpopular, he could have been voted out. After all, Morsi only won election by 51% and this was partly because his opponent was a representative of the Mubarak regime; 3)the shortages of gas and other staples that had crippled the economy suddenly disappeared immediately following the coup, indicating that at least some of the economic problems under the Morsi government were intentionally caused by the restorationist forces;4)the Muslim Brotherhood had rejected violence and had actually worked to reduce sectarian conflict with Coptic Christians and it is possible that the attack on the churches following the ejection of the Muslim Brotherhood from the square was organized by other forces, perhaps even provocateurs from the security police; 5)the Morsi government was incompetent in many ways and sectarian, failing especially to reach out to govern with secular, liberal forces. It was also beholden to Salafists and conservative religious forces within its own ranks, having pushed out the more moderate, younger members of the Brotherhood who had been challenging the old guard on their social conservatism. Still, it is not clear that the Muslim Brotherhood or the Morsi government was in a strong position for the long term and so it is not obvious that the only way to prevent the imposition of an "Islamic state" on the population was to call in the army. 6)By making the return of Morsi a "non-negotiable" starting point of their encampments in the squares, the Muslim Brotherhood made it difficult for political forces that had opposed Morsi in power to support the Brotherhood's occupation of the squares. Was it possible to support the occupation and still oppose the occupation's "non-negotiable" demand? Could the left have defended the political rights of the Muslim Brotherhood and their right to continue their protest, organizing for a different demand in terms of restoring civilian rule? 7)the army has relied on a very potent propaganda machine to legitimate its virulent repression of the Muslim Brotherhood. This ought to have been anticipated by the opposition forces who find themselves now politically marginalized as well as increasingly targeted for arrest and beatings under the guise of protecting Egyptians from terrorism.

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