In Egypt, Many Complain - But Don't Protest

Sunday, 30 Jun 2013 07:06 PM


  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
|  A   A  
  Copy Shortlink
Politics is all very well, reckons Zeeka, but it doesn't sell tomatoes and it doesn't pay the rent.

"It's nothing to do with me," said the 23-year-old vegetable seller, in an eerily quiet downtown Cairo. "I'm the tomato guy."

He was one of millions of Egyptians on Sunday who were not joining in mass protests against President Mohammed Morsi and who cursed factional rivalry for making it harder to make a living.

Latest: Is Snowden a Hero or Traitor – Vote in Urgent Poll

"I won't go out on any protest," he said as demonstrations got under way in central Cairo. "If we vote for one guy he won't feed us. If we vote for the other guy he won't feed us either."

For Mohamed Ghareeb, another small businessman struggling to make ends meet, political squabbling since the revolution that ousted Hosni Mubarak two years ago was making things worse.

"We object to both sides," he said in his small cafe down an alleyway as he poured Turkish coffee for customers devouring an Egyptian breakfast of stewed beans and falafel.

"They are both fighting for power and not thinking of the good of the people," said Ghareeb, 28. Two and half years ago, he was out on Tahrir Square nearby to help topple Hosni Mubarak. Now, he said, the revolution was being lost in selfishness.

He voted for Morsi in last year's presidential run-off - against a Mubarak-era general - and was disappointed. But the answer was not to dump the Islamist after a year in office.

"I don't like Morsi but I love my country and stability in my country," he said. "If he falls, we will go back to fighting again and the situation will be worse than it is now."

At the pharmacy along the street, pharmacist Hamdi Mahmoud, 33, was also worried about more unrest: "We're all suffering," he said. "But I think one year is not enough to judge Morsi."

Liberal leaders are banking on millions fed up with the economy to help push Morsi out. They have been angered by the U.S. ambassador, who said protests were bad for an economy crippled by unrest that has scared off tourists and investors.

Vegetable vendor Zeeka, who gave only his nickname, said he too feared more violence: more trouble means less work for a man who reckons that since the revolution his daily income has more than halved, to $6. His monthly rent had nearly doubled, to $70.

"What is happening now in Egypt is shameful. Prices are on the rise. There is no work. Thugs are everywhere," he said, showing a scar on his arm from a recent beating.

Political feuding was just not helping: "We are with neither one nor the other," said Zeeka. "We are the vegetable people."

Latest: Is Snowden a Hero or Traitor – Vote in Urgent Poll

© 2014 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.

  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
  Copy Shortlink
Around the Web
Join the Newsmax Community
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.
>> Register to share your comments with the community.
>> Login if you are already a member.
blog comments powered by Disqus
Retype Email:
Zip Code:
Privacy: We never share your email.
Hot Topics
Follow Newsmax
Like us
on Facebook
Follow us
on Twitter
Add us
on Google Plus
Around the Web
You May Also Like

Officer Who Pointed Gun at Protesters Suspended

Wednesday, 20 Aug 2014 18:26 PM

Officials say a police officer who was part of the effort to keep peace during protests in Ferguson has been suspended f . . .

Of 51 Recent Arrests in Ferguson, 1 Is a Resident

Wednesday, 20 Aug 2014 18:12 PM

St. Louis County police say 51 people were arrested from mid-day Tuesday through early Wednesday in Ferguson - all but o . . .

Obama Vows to Stop ISIS 'Cancer' After American Beheaded

Wednesday, 20 Aug 2014 16:33 PM

The United States stood firm Wednesday in its fight against Islamic State militants who beheaded a U.S. journalist in Ir . . .

Most Commented

Newsmax, Moneynews, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, NewsmaxWorld, NewsmaxHealth, are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

America's News Page
©  Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved