Cairo Activists: 'From Tahrir Square to Wall St.'

Anti-Mubarak revolutionaries back Occupy Wall Street and find similarities between the protests. Leading activists visit New York.

Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu,

Occupy Wall Street Protest
Occupy Wall Street Protest
Israel news photo: David Shankbone Wikimedia Commons

Anti-Mubarak revolutionaries back Occupy Wall Street and find similarities between the protest movements. Leading Egyptian activists joined the protest in New York Monday night with the message, "From Tahrir Square to Wall Street.”

"We are now in many ways involved in the same struggle," a solidarity message from Egypt stated. "What most pundits call 'The Arab Spring' has its roots in the demonstrations, riots, strikes and occupations taking place all around the world." 

The Occupy Wall Street protest movement, whose leader said was inspired by the Arab Spring uprisings, received a boost on Monday, when several leading Egyptian activists, including 26-year-old Asmaa Mahfouz, visited to lend their support. Mahfouz is one of the founders of the April 6 Youth Movement, the group credited with helping to organize the January 25 protests that eventually toppled the regime of former president Hosni Mubarak.

Mahfouz and fellow Egyptian activist and April 6 co-founder Ahmed Maher visited Zuccotti Park, and brought a gift – an Egyptian flag with the slogan "From Tahrir Square to Wall Street.”

"Many of U.S. residents were in solidarity with us," she told Democracy Now. "I am here to be in solidarity and support the Wall Street Occupy protesters, to say to them, ’the power to the people,' and to keep it on and on, and they will succeed in the end."  

The solidarity statement from Egypt rejected the distinction between Arab dictatorships and the United States and reasoned that the protest movements both in Cairo and elsewhere are against "systems of repression, disenfranchisement and the unchecked ravages of global capitalism.”

Mubarak is on trial for charges of corruption and theft as well as the murder of more than 800 demonstrators.

"An entire generation across the globe has grown up realizing, rationally and emotionally, that we have no future in the current order of things,” the statement continued.

Ed Needham, an Occupy Wall Street media spokesman, said the message from Egyptian revolutionaries “gives a real strong, empathetic sense of solidarity. It's a beautifully written piece," the London Guardian reported.

He added, "Obviously the facts on the ground in Egypt are not the facts on the ground here, but as they articulated, it's really about sensing and knowing that a system is no longer right or just or fair and no longer willing to be an exploited member of that system."

Occupy Wall Street activists Alexander Penley said, "What affects Egypt affects New York. The rights of persons worldwide and all semblance of free government have been hijacked by corporate interests. Egyptian people who thirst for global compassion are like Americans. We know we are together with only one choice – victory."

Iran’s semi-official Fars News Agency told its readers that the protests in New York, London and other cities around the world are meant “to challenge the culture of corporate greed, economic and social inequality, capitalism and Zionists' control over western economies and politics.”

It pointed out that the Wall Street protesters are using tactics and oratory inspired by the Tahrir Square uprising that toppled Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak.