According to the Guardian:
Mubarak family fortune could reach $70bn, say experts
Egyptian president has cash in British and Swiss banks plus UK and US property
President Hosni Mubarak‘s family fortune could be as much as $70bn (£43.5bn) according to analysis by Middle East experts, with much of his wealth in British and Swiss banks or tied up in real estate in London, New York, Los Angeles and along expensive tracts of the Red Sea coast.
We should recall that:
1. The average Egyptian makes around 6,000 dollars a year.
2. The bread lines at the government subsidized bakeries for the last few years have been s0 long and unpleasant over a hundred people have died from crushing or fighting in them. Talk about making the poor fight over the crumbs from the dictator’s table! See the LA Times article below.
3. The US pays this guy’s government using taxpayer’s money over a billion dollars a year in so-called “foreign aid.”
4. The only way this guy has stayed in power has been by running a brutal police state and a torture regime. The Egyptian police are very notorious for their tactics of torture first, ask questions later. If you wanted to talk, you had to whisper, people have told us, lest you suddenly get arrested for having had the wrong opinion. One of Egypt’s most famous writers spoke today on the radio about how she couldn’t go home tonight because she thinks the secret police might have been tipped off that she gave a radio interview critical of the regime. For decades now, this guy has been a US lap-dog. We kept him in power, we subsidized his torture chambers and his secret gestapo.
We in the US were content enough to have a client state with a ruler who could impose our arbitrary decisions on his country’s people. We gave him the weapons to do the crackdowns, decade after decade. We trained his torturers, including Mr. Suleiman, the current vice-pres who the US now wants, very badly, to be the one to take over. We call it a smooth transition, you know, from dictator to dictator, a client state at every level, able to enforce US policy over the will of the Egyptian people. Essentially, the US policy is: fuck the Egyptian people. US policies are more important, and if the Egyptians themselves don’t like them…go get tortured.
5. Democracy is the opposite of paying a dictator to impose police rule over the people. It is the precise inverse of these things. If there US were truly interested in democracy, and not just paying lip service to it as a proxy for its own very profitable interests, then the first thing it would do is stop paying off dictators and make public statements encouraging people to push out their dictators just as the American Revolution pushed out British tyranny.
LA Times article from Feb. 3:
Poverty reaches across Nile Delta villages and into the deepest city alleys. The poor must hustle, chasing rusted minivans, bickering in markets, standing in bread lines, praying for work. They laugh and weep in shared misery, like weary soldiers summoned to take an impossible hill. More than 40% live on less than $2 a day. Desperation is their twin.