After several cancelled flights, I am finally on my way
to Egypt to join my CODEPINK colleagues who are already there. We were
supposed to be leading a delegation to Gaza right now, traveling through
the Sinai to get to Gaza's southern border. The Rafa crossing into Gaza
has been closed, our delegation is unable to leave Cairo, and we have
been caught up in the breath-taking people's movement that is sweeping
Egypt. CODEPINK's Tighe Barry has been out on the streets of Cairo
all week long. You can hear
a compelling report from him here.
When CODEPINK was in Cairo for the Gaza Freedom March
last year, we led and participated in small, peaceful protests that were
set upon by hundreds of riot police at the behest of repressive Mubarak
But now there has been a seismic shift. There are not
50 people rallying in Cairo, but hundreds of thousands protesting across
the nation. Dozens have been killed; hundreds have been wounded.
But the Egyptian people will not be turned back. They
feel their power and are determined to seize the moment.
US has given Egypt $68 billion since 1948, and since 1979,
Egypt has been the second-biggest recipient of US aid after Israel. Our
government currently gives $1.3 billion a year of our tax dollars in military
aid to the Mubarak regime.
us in telling President Obama, Secretary of State Hillary
Clinton and the U.S. Congress to stop funding the Mubarak regime now,
to call on Mubarak to resign, and to expressly say that our government
stands with the Egyptian people. After all, in his recent State of the
Union Address, President Obama declared: “The United States stands
with the people of Tunisia.” Shouldn't we also stand with
here to stand in solidarity with people who are giving
their government, our government and the world a lesson in democracy.
Mubarak is refusing to leave. But our government can—and
must—break its ties to this dictator. As courageous Egyptian citizens
are being assaulted with U.S. tear gas and other Made-in-the-USA weapons,
we must say: Enough.