Is there any entity less qualified than the European Union to make public utterances urging the Mubarak regime:
… to meet the aspirations of the Egyptian people with political reform, not repression
Who on earth are the EU’s leaders to lecture the world on democracy? Where is the EU’ shame in wheeling out Baroness Catherine Ashton, the grandly titled High Representative of the European Union for foreign affairs and security policy, to make comments such as that below when she herself has never been elected to so much as a parish council in her life?
… democracy is, of course, about votes and elections – but it is also about far more than that. What we in Europe have learned the hard way is that we need “deep democracy”: respect for the rule of law, freedom of speech, an independent judiciary and impartial administration.
So where in the name of all things Holy is it? Any Egyptian taking succour from the words of this patronage elevated appointee of the political class should stop and consider what the EU’s interpretation of democracy is. If Egypt follows the EU model its people will find themselves having shed blood to supplant one dictator for another.
For what the people of Europe have is an unelected and unaccountable transnational government – the antithesis of any structure that can be called democratic. And in the member states the people have elective dictatorships that take their orders from Brussels and pointedly refused to ask for the people’s mandate as an EU constitution was forced through in Lisbon. Where in Europe has one of the supposedly democratic national governments gone to its people and asked if they wish to continue to be ruled by Brussels?
Catherine Ashton says:
Europe’s experience tells us that true democracy is the necessary foundation of tolerance, peace and prosperity.
Perhaps then the lessons that need to be learned from the Egyptian experience are for those of us living in the EU. If we want to experience geunine tolerance, peace and prosperity then maybe we should be following the example of the Egyptians masses. They understood what too many Europeans do not, that liberty is not something a ruler can bestow upon you, it is something you have to take for yourself. Why do we in the UK for example tolerate our Foreign Secretary declaring that ‘We should have faith in the people of Egypt’ when he and his fellow government members deny us the right to determine how we are governed because they have no faith in the people of the United Kingdom?
It makes my skin crawl when I read Ashton proclaiming that the first of many EU missions are already heading to Tunisia. If the Tunisians, and the Egyptians after them, adopt the corrupted sham that passes for democracy in the EU they will soon see that having a Cameron, a Sarkozy or a Merkel form of administration is no different to being ruled by a Ben Ali or a Mubarak.
All that will change is the veneer, with people being given the illusion of power while possessing none. If they do not believe that perhaps the experience of Cameron’s Westminster can give them a reality check. For here on the supposedly democratic Planet Cameron we have a toxic Prime Minister who, among other things, tells MPs in his party who disagree with him:
to say nothing and vote with the government
and offers them positions on committees, but only in return for setting aside their detailed knowledge of the subject in question, remaining completely loyal and supporting the government without question. This is what European people power looks like, as our representatives are browbeaten by the elected dictator – a man who determines the people shall not have a referendum because he does not want one. Yet Cameron has the brass neck to declare:
As a friend of Egypt, and the Egyptian people, we stand ready to help in any way we can. We believe it must be a government that starts to put in place the building blocks of a truly open, free and democratic society.
Would it have been worth all the suffering and the loss of life in Tunisia and Egypt only to replace the whip that had beat them with a stick instead? It is not the people of Tunisia and Egypt who need to learn from us. It is we who need to learn from them.