Exclusive - Gigi Ibrahim Extended Interview Pt. 1

  • Aired:  06/04/14
  •  | Views: 32,458

Activist Gigi Ibrahim describes how the revolutionary movement has changed in Egypt since Mubarak was overthrown in 2011. (7:42)

[ APPLAUSE ]>> Jon: MY GUEST TONIGHT SHE IS

AN ACTIVIST WITH THEREVOLUTIONARY SOCIALISTS IN

EGYPT. PLEASE WELCOME BACK TOTHE PROGRAM, GIGI IBRAHIM.

[CHEERS AND APPLAUSE]>> THANK YOU.

THANK YOU.

>> Jon: FIRST OF ALL, GIGI,WELCOME BACK TO THE SHOW.

>> THANK YOU.

>> Jon: THE LAST TIME YOU WEREHERE, IT WAS I BELIEVE IT WAS

2009.

>> NO, 11.

>> Jon: 11, 2011.

>> YEAH. THE REVOLUTION, YOUKNOW.

>> Jon: THE REVOLUTION. RIGHTAFTER MUBARAK.

>> YES.

>> THERE WAS, IT WAS, THERE WASALMOST EXALTATION.

THERE WAS EXCITEMENT.

PEOPLE HAD TAKEN TOTHE STREETS. THEY HAD TAKEN

DOWN THIS AUTOCRAT WHO HAD BEENTHERE FOR 30 YEARS.

>> YES.

>> SO, HOW'S IS IT BEEN GOINGSINCE THEN?

>> WE DID IT AGAIN.

>> Jon: YOU DID IT AGAIN?

>> YES.

BUT, NOT SO SUCCESSFUL THISTIME.

WE MANAGED TO TOPPLE ANOTHERHEAD OF REGIME, THAT WAS JUST

THE FACE.

>> Jon: MOHAMED MORSI OF THEPRESIDENT OF THE MUSLIM BROTHER.

>> YES. YES.

>> THEY WON THE ELECTION.

>> EXACTLY.

YOU KNOW THE MILITARY SINCE 1952REALLY HAS BEEN THERE, AND

HASN'T GONE ANYWHERE.

AND IS JUST GETTING STRONGER.

AND NOW WE HAVE THE FIRSTPRESIDENT.

>> Jon: YES.

>> THE HEAD OF THE SUPREMECOUNCIL OF THE ARMED FORCES.

>> NOW THIS IS SISI.

>> SISI. ABDEL FATTAH EL-SISI.

HE IS NOW PRESIDENT WITH 96.6%.

>> Jon: BOY, YOU CAN'T ARGUEWITH THAT KIND OF NUMBER.

>> DEMOCRACY? YES. YES.

>> THERE IS ALMOST NOTHING THATCAN GET THAT KIND OF NUMBER.

YOU CAN PUT ICE CREAM UP AGAINSTCANCER IN AN ELECTION,

>> YEAH.

>> PROBABLY BE CLOSER THANTHAT.

>> ABSOLUTELY. LIKE, IT SEEMSLIKE EVERY TIME WE JUST MANAGE

TO DO AN UPRISE AND KIND OFGET THE DEMANDS, THE FREEDOM,

SOCIAL JUSTICE.

THIS IS KIND OF WHY WE DID THISIN THE FIRST PLACE.

TO TAKE DOWN THE DICTATOR.

NOW WE JUST GET WORSE AND WORSE.

YOU CAN SAY THAT WE ARE AT THELOWEST POINT OF THE REVOLUTION

WITH OVER 41,000 POLITICALPRISONERS IN JUST TEN MONTHS.

>> Jon: INCREDIBLE.

HERE IS WHAT IS SO DIFFICULT FORME TO COMPREHEND. THAT YOU COULD

ALMOST SAY THAT MORSI AND THEMUSLIM BROTHERHOOD WERE THE MORE

LIBERAL REGIME, THEY WERE THEPROGRESSIVES COMPARED TO SISI.

THERE WAS MORE FREEDOM OFEXPRESSION UNDER THE

BROTHERHOOD, IT SEEMS.

>> NOT EXACTLY.

YES, IT'S DEFINITELY, IT WASN'TAS BAD.

BUT MORSI DID HIS FAIR SHARE TODESERVE TO BE TAKEN DOWN AS.

>> YES I JUST MEANT MORECOMPARATIVELY SISI APPEARS TO

BE -- >> YES. IT GETS WORST.

>> IT GETS WORSE.>> IT GETS WORSE BECAUSE

THEN THE REVOLUTION ISDEEPENING. AND, IT'S GETTING

TO THE MILITARY ANDTHE INTEREST OF THE MILITARY.

OF COURSE THEY DON'T WANT THEREVOLUTION TO SUCCEED BECAUSE

THEN THEY WOULD BE IN PRISONWITH THE BLOOD ON THEIR HANDS.

>> Jon: YES.

THEY HAVE INSTITUTED THINGS LIKENO PROTEST.

YOU'RE NOT ALLOWED ANYMORE -- ATLEAST UNDER THE BROTHERHOOD

PEOPLE CAME TO THE STREETS.

>> YES. AND YOU KNOW, WE ALWAYSSAY YES, MAYBE WE DIDN'T ACHIEVE

THE BIG DEMANDS OF THEREVOLUTION, BUT AT LEAST WE

BROKE THE BARRIER OF FEAR. WEHAVE PEOPLE WHO CAN EXPRESS

THEMSELVES, WE HAVE, YOU KNOW,SOCIAL MEDIA, WE HAVE DIFFERENT

PERSONALITIES ON TV THAT, CAN,YOU KNOW, EXPRESS THE

OPPOSITION. >> Jon: OR DID HAVE.

>> OR DID HAVE. BUT,AS YOU CAN SEE NOW EVERY

LITTLE THING WE WON OVER THEPAST THREE YEARS,

REALLY WHETHER IT BE THERIGHTS TO PROTEST, THAT

WE WON WITH BLOOD AND TEARS,REALLY. AND JUST LIVES

OF REVOLUTIONARIESAND PEOPLE WHO REALLY WANTED

THIS RIGHT TO GO OUT ANDPROTEST. THEN YOU HAVE THE

BIGGEST PROTEST IN THE MODERNHISTORY OF EGYPTIAN HISTORY.

>> Jon: REALLY ALMOST ANYHISTORY.

MILLIONS THAT TOOK TO THESTREETS WAS REMARKABLE.

>> REALLY REALLY. IT WAS, ITWAS, SOME PEOPLE SAY 33 MILLION,

17 MILLION. I REALLY DON'T CARE.

IT WAS THE BIGGEST THING I'VEEVER BEEN IN OR EVEN WITNESSED,

OR SEEN OR READ ABOUT.

IT WAS REALLY CRAZY.

THE GOVERNMENT THAT COMES AFTERTHIS MASS PROTEST, CRIMINALIZES

PROTESTING.

AND IMPRISONS OVER 41,000POLITICAL PRISONERS.

>> Jon: SO, THE TEE SHIRT,OBVIOUSLY, THAT'S PROBABLY

NOT SOMETHING YOUGOT ON THE JERSEY BOARDWALK.

>> NO.

>> Jon: WHAT IS, WHAT ARE WEDEALING WITH HERE?

>> THIS IS MAHIENOUREL-MASSRY. SHE IS ONE OF THE

BRAVEST, COURAGEOUS SOCIALIST,ACTIVIST AND REVOLUTIONARY.

HUMAN RIGHTS LAWYER AS WELL ANDLABOR LAWYER.

SHE HAS BEEN SENTENCED TO TWOYEARS IN PRISON ALONG WITH SEVEN

OTHER PEOPLE.

>> Jon: FOR.

>> FOR PROTESTING ATKHALED SAID MURDER TRIAL IN

ALEXANDRIA. >> NOW, EXPLAIN THAT. THAT'S A

>> YES. KHALED SAID WAS MURDEREDUNDER THAT HANDS OF

POLICE UNDER EMERGENCY LAW UNDERMUBARAK IN 2010. AND, HE HAS

BEEN A GREAT CATALYST TOREVOLUTION. WHAT SPARKED THE

YOUTH TO TAKE TO THE STREETS ANDTOPPLE DOWN ESSENTIALLY MUBARAK.

HIS MURDERS WERE ACQUITTEDOR GIVEN A VERY WEAK SENTENCE

AND WERE RETRIED AFTERCREATING SO MANY PRESSURES.

AT THE TRIAL BACK IN LATE 2013THE ALEXANDRIA ACTIVISTS,

MAHIENOUR, HASSAN MOSTAFAAND SO MANY, 7 OTHER PEOPLE

THEY ORGANIZED A PROTESTTO KIND OF PRESSURE TO GIVE A

HARSHER SENTENCE.

AND THEY WERE ROUNDED UP ANDSENTENCED UNDER THE ANTI-PROTEST

LAW THE GOVERNMENT ENACTED LASTNOVEMBER.

UNDER THAT LAW IT'S PRETTY MUCHIS A LEGAL JUSTIFICATION TO JUST

KILL OFF THE OPPOSITIONAND WEAKEN THE REVOLUTION

>> AND THROW THEM IN JAIL.>> AND THROW THEM IN JAIL.

>> Jon: AND DO WHATEVER.

>> AND WHAT WE'RE TALKING ABOUT.

THE JAIL CONDITIONS HERE.

YOU HAVE SOLITARY CONFINEMENT.

DENYING OF MEDICAL CARE.

TORTURE, ABUSE, RAPE, YOU CANTHINK OF ANYTHING THAT IS SO

INHUMANE IS BEING DONE IN THEEGYPTIAN PRISON.

AND NOBODY'S TALKING ABOUT, MASS--

>> Jon: IS THE MEDIA IN EGYPT

ALLOWED TO BRING THIS UP INANYWAY?

ARE THEY ALLOWED TO TALK ABOUTMAHIENOUR?

>> NO. NO. HOW WOULDTHEY TALK ABOUT --

>> IT HAS TO COME FROM OUTSIDE.

>> MAHIENOUR AND THE THOUSANDSOF PEOPLE LIKE MAHIENOUR IN

PRISON WHO JOINEDTHE REVOLUTION. WHO TOOK PART OR

WHO HAVE BEEN RANDOMLY ARRESTED.

>> Jon: HUH-UH.

>> THEY TALK ABOUT THEM AS FIFTHCOLUMNISTS TO THE MUSLIM

BROTHERHOOD. THATTHEY'RE TERRORISTS,

THAT THEY WANT TO BRING THESTATE DOWN. THEY VILIFY

THEM IN THE MEDIA OR DON'TDISCUSS THEM AT ALL.

AND ABSOLUTELY SAY THATFIRST AND FOREMOST THING WE

HAVE TO DO NOW ISFIGHT TERRORISM.

AND THESE ARE THE TERRORISTS.

>> Jon: CAN YOU IMAGINE ACOUNTRY THAT WOULD STRIP

CIVIL RIGHTS UNDER THEGUISE OF FIGHTING TERRORISM?

THAT'S -- WE'RE NOT SO DIFFERENTAFTER ALL.

>> NO.

NOPE. NOPE. NO.

WITH THE SYRIA ELECTIONS AND THEELECTIONS COMING UP, YOU KNOW,

WE ALL HAVE TO CHOOSE WITH THERELATIVE, YOU KNOW --

>> Jon: IT'S ALL ON A SCALE.

>> IT'S ALL ON A SCALE, YES.

BUT YOU'RE ALWAYS CHOOSINGBETWEEN BAD AND WORST.

THAT'S NOT A DEMOCRACY. THAT'SJUST NOT A DEMOCRACY.

>> Jon: THAT IS THE WORSTSUCCESSERY POSTER I HAVE EVER

HEARD.>> YEAH. YEAH.

>> I'M SO GLAD THAT YOU'REHERE. WILL YOU STICK AROUND

FOR A LITTLE BIT AND WEWILL TALK ABOUT WHAT IS GOING ON

WITH OUR FRIEND BASSEM WHAT'SGOING ON WITH THE MOVEMENT.

IF IT'S OKAY FOR YOU TO BE HERE.

BECAUSE NOW I'M CONCERNED.

BECAUSE HOW MANY MOVIES CAN IWRITE?

WE WILL BE BACK WITH MORE GIGIIBRAHIM.

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