Saturday, May 14, 2011

Suzanne Mubarek: the Queen of Egypt on the Hot Seat

Deposed Egyptian president Hosni Mubarek and his two sons have been detained for the last few months by the new government and questioned about their accumulation of many millions (or more, they are still searching for the money) of dollars held in bank accounts in Egypt and around the world. The former president is also under investigation for the deaths of Tahrir Square protesters killed by the police. Another important issue being looked into is the charge that the Mubareks personally profited from selling natural gas to Israel at below market prices.

Now Mubarek's wife, Suzanne Mubarek, has also been detained for official questioning about involvement in the family's corruption. She holds an Egyptian bank account of over three million dollars and owns a large mansion and has access (she is the only one who can sign checks) to a 70 million dollar bank account in the name of the Library of Alexandria

Suzanne Mubarek, was known as the most influential woman in Egypt during the Mubarek's over 30 year reign. She cultivated an image of a caring, socially conscious, peace promoting person. She was also know as the main promoter of her son Gamal to succeed his father in the presidency.

The Egyptian people are joyous over the fall of Mubarek tyranny and obviously don't have any sympathy for Hosni Mubarek's plight or that of his sons and wife. All of them are rightfully seen as part of a violent, repressive dictatorship that jailed, tortured and killed anyone who challenged their rule. Their time in power saw the masses fall into poverty while the Mubareks and their army and businessman cronies grew rich. The Egyptian people have also expressing their loathing of the Mubarek's kowtowing to the US and Israel and their cooperation in the Israel/US oppression of the Palestinians.

Suzanne Mubarek was part and parcel of the former Egyptian government and an accomplice in all of its crimes domestic and foreign.

Why am I bothering to state the obvious? Because some people who should have known better were taken in by Suzanne Mubarek's games.

Suzanne Mubarek's ballyhooed reputation as a humanitarian and defender of women's rights was very useful to Hosni Mubarek's National Democratic Party dictatorship in Egypt. The iron fist of repression wanted their image to be sugar coated by the supposedly charitable doer of good, the president's wife.

It was the old "hard cop, soft cop routine." While the hard cop is beating a suspected dissident to death in a back alley, the soft cop is bringing flowers to patients in hospital for poor children.

Mrs. Mubarek cultivated illusions among some peace activists from the US and Europe that she was concerned about the plight of the people of Gaza and played on these activist's sad delusions that they could be big time players and make deals with Suzanne Mubarek to get things done. The predictable results led to a situation where these "leaders" disgraced themselves and embittered those who made the mistake to trust them.

There is no quick fix, no clever cutting of corners to winning battles for human rights.

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