With the deaths of over 600 people in one day, last Wednesday was the most violent day in Egypt, since its 2011 revolution. Many have died before, and after that day.
And the world is helplessly and hopelessly watching Egypt being pushed onto the brink of a civil war. No one seems to know what to do!
The question I have is this. Where has wisdom gone?
The interim government’s prime minister proposes to legally dissolve the Muslim Brotherhood. Its members are the key supporters of Mohammed Morsi, whose ousting as president sparked this Egypt’s stand-off. Is the Prime Minister’s proposal wise?
The pro-Morsi camp announces that they will hold more protests to denounce attacks on peaceful protestors by government forces. They said they will also denounce the new legal proposals. Are these anti-government protestors being wise?
In fact, what do these bloody clashes between the anti government protestors and the government forces actually tell us? About Egyptians?
Long long ago, there was a time, in the ancient times, when the world looked at Egypt for wisdom. Egypt was the standard by which the rest of the world got measured for its wisdom.
There is a note in the Bible that says “Solomon’s wisdom was greater than all the wisdom of Egypt”.
Quite clearly, it tells us that those who measured wisdom had considered the wisdom of Egyptians as the standard or the benchmark then. But it is apparent now, that today’s Egypt and Egyptians will not be anywhere near that ancient standard, or reputation.
The bloody massacre tells us that ‘reason’ is being thrown to winds. Despite requests by other governments to handle the situation carefully, and with peaceful talks, both sides are unable to get to the table.
Whether it is the seige of the Cairo mosque on Saturday, or whether it is the interim Vice President’s resignation earlier, things are spiraling out of control.
Whether one argues that US will cut aid to Egypt, in billions, which it gives for military support, or whether one expects clashes to intensify, it may get too rough for ineffective leadership.
Let us just hope that it will not last long. Let us hope that the leaders will control the situation sensibly and the protestors will not use any violence at all.
In a complicated political situation in Shakespeare’s ‘Julius Caesar’, Mark Antony gives his funeral oratory over Caeser’s body. It has these words: “O judgement thou art fled to brutish beasts, and men have lost their reason”.
In that story, finally, reason prevails.
In this current Egyptian tragedy too, let us hope that reason prevails.