Thursday, December 22, 2011

Winter of discontent

Protestors in Tahrir Square and Wall Street articulate equal frustrations
20 December 2011 - Police in New York City, Boston, Los Angeles, Baltimore, San Francisco and many other American cities may have evacuated peaceful demonstrators of the Occupy movement. But that’s done little to quell the unsettling discontent sweeping the globe.

Concerns of the Occupy movement in the United States are linked with protests from afar. One of the most poignant moments during Occupy Wall Street was when the Egyptian flag was hoisted over Wall Street. Unspoken irony and exuberance swept like a wave through crowds at Zuccotti Park. Protest leaders from Cairo’s Tahrir Square had joined Occupy Wall Street.

Egyptian protestors explained to Occupy protesters how Washington spends US$1.3 billion each year supporting Egypt’s military. The funds Mubarak used to repress human rights, and those Egyptian protestors themselves, could have been spent in the United States to upgrade infrastructure and create jobs.

The Egyptians’ words struck an anti-war nerve. Zuccotti Park had the nostalgia of 1969, but the issues run far deeper. A vast cross-section of America has merged, and Occupy Wall Street represents a microcosm of America.

Left or right, both sides have lost jobs. Protestors decry unemployment, rising inequality and home foreclosures, unprecedented since the Great Depression. Within the span of a decade, America’s financial might was exhausted by unnecessary wars, fiscal stimulus wasted, and rewarding bailouts to bankers gone rogue. For Americans, the Wall Street — Washington coterie has become as much a symbol of incompetent government, politics of oligarchy and economic squandering as Mubarak and his military cronies are to the Egyptian people — a point that hit home as the Egyptian flag unfurled in a crackling autumn wind over downtown Manhattan.

Protestors in Tahrir Square and Wall Street articulate equal frustrations. Both have joined hands to express outrage at an unjust order that’s blatantly hypocritical. Declining economies, loss of jobs, poor infrastructure, lack of trust in government, unnecessary wars, a manipulated media top their lists. read more>>>

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