Monday, March 7, 2011

Inside Amn Dawla

The Egyptian people have made another important step this weekend in dismantling the remnants of the old regime. With reports of smoke coming out of the Amn Dawla (State Security) headquarters in multiple areas of Egypt, hundreds of Egyptians marched on these buildings to stop the burning of documents.

In Doqqi Central Security blocked the streets surrounding the Amn Dawla HQ as hundreds of protesters surrounded army tanks and called for the dismantling of the apparatus that has been used to suppress the Egyptian people. Many of the youth came armed with stones and sticks, but remained peaceful as they held their rally.

The big news comes out of Alexandria and Nasr City, Cairo which witnessed Egyptian citizens taking over the HQs and uncovering floors of documents and torture devices. Some of the documents had been burned such as one that discusses Ayman Nur’s (the leader of the opposition party, Tomorrow) guilty verdict four days before the court reached a verdict. An article from Al-Masry Al-Youm reports that many of the judges have been cooperating with State Security in reaching verdicts for politically motivated cases.

Other documents had been shredded and have been taken out by the bag-full by the protesters, who are ready to put them back together. I similar event happened in Iran when the US Embassy was taken over during their revolution. The books made from them are banned in the US, but I am certain that these will be made public domain by being uploaded the internet. This has already started on Facebook. Another big find are FBI files, which every one anticipates will shed light on America’s rendition program (There is a picture in this Gawker article of an FBI binder).

This is a major boost to the democracy movement in Egypt. Given the Army’s hesitation to hand power to a civilian interim government and their use of tribunals against some of the protesters, the actions taken over the weekend may add momentum to the protesters’ calls for a civilian government. It is an important step at the current moment given that the military has been reportedly using military tribunals to convict some of the protesters of crimes that occurred during the revolution. Hopefully this will strengthen the already strong resolve of the people to make real changes to the current system.

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