Violence and the Egyptian Revolution
DOI link for Violence and the Egyptian Revolution
Violence and the Egyptian Revolution book
The status of violence has largely changed in the Arab Revolutions since 2011. The first Arab Revolutions, the Tunisian and Egyptian revolutions, had a leitmotiv based on non-violence and peacefulness, crystallized in the Arabic word of selmiyah. Violence was mainly the action and reaction of the powers that be. It was, on the whole, “moderate,” taking into account the standards of the region and the long tradition of state repression in most of the Muslim world: in Tunisia, the death toll was around 338 people,2 and in Egypt, 846.3
This relatively limited number of deaths was due to the fact that the revolutions proper (up to the overthrow of the regime) lasted a short span of time (28 days in Tunisia, 18 days in Egypt), and the regimes were not among the most repressive ones, compared to the Syrian or the Libyan (the latter was overthrown with the direct assistance of the NATO Air Force). This model was not replicated in the other cases and the death toll was by far higher: in Yemen, more than 2,000, up to the departure of President Ali Abdullah Saleh,4 in Libya, around 30,000,5 and the ongoing civil war in Syria has caused more than 70,000 deaths,6 and the end of the crises in the Arab world is not in sight. In some cases, after the overthrow of the old regimes, the death toll continued to rise, as in Egypt where a few hundred died after the end of the old regime.