The blockbuster film "V for Vendetta" portrays a world besieged by global poverty, warfare, and totalitarianism. One of the main characters, Evey, ends up abducted by the revolutionary "terrorist" named "V". They become friendly with each other and V lets her go free. Later as she tries to escape the infamous state security forces she is caught. Evey ends up in a dungeon and tortured. Eventually she sees a door open and walks into V's room. She realizes it was him and not the police the entire time. As she cries and screams at him he explains why he did it. He also explains why she was sent notes in her cell claiming to be from another prisoner next door. He tells Evey these were sent to him when he was in prison. V tells her that he needed to cure her of her fear and terror that she lived under everyday. V also made her see one woman's story that never made it out alive. She leaves and realizes it worked. She went into hiding but she was no longer afraid of the despotic regime she lived under.
This part of the film I think helps explain, at least partially, how so many brave Arabs have been able to take on their authoritarian governments. In Tunisia, Egypt, Bahrain, Libya, and Yemen torture has been commonplace. A people have been terrorized into submission. Then, as if out of nowhere, Arabs-collectively-decided they were not afraid anymore. Countless blogs and interviews from these countries record people saying, "We no longer have any fear." Even as Bahrain security forces shoot men, women, and children the protesters continue to defy the authorities.
In Egypt today the Egyptian military has made a public apology for cracking down on protesters. Notice the activists response from an online article by Jailan Zayan:
Activists launched a Facebook call for fresh protests on Saturday to denounce the army's use of force.
"Peaceful protesters in Tahrir are being chased away by the military police with tasers, sticks and whips. Masked men with machine guns trying to shut down the strike by force. Many beaten, assaulted and arrested," the statement said.
"We cannot stand for this; we must stand strong against violence towards peaceful protesters."
In a recent article from "the Jerusalem Post" Larry Derfner discussed the inevitability of Palestinians reclaiming the West Bank. He writes what he predicts will happen:
Masses of Palestinians, tens of thousands, hundreds of thousands, marching to IDF checkpoints and outposts, marching to Israeli-only roads, to settlements, to the security fence – to the nearest Israeli presence and screaming, “Out! Out!”
And refusing to leave.
WHAT THE hell is the IDF going to do then? Shoot them? Arrest them? With the whole world not only watching but, for the first time, already won over by other unarmed Arab masses facing down their oppressors?
At this point in history, Libyans are having to fight the hardest to take down the megalomaniac Qaddafi that has imposed himself on the country for over four decades. Perhaps thousands will die before he is disposed of. He will be cut down from his illusory realm of power. The process has begun and the people will not stop until he is removed.
In regards to this film clip I picked to accompany my blog's theme, I wanted to post this because it depicts (even if in a limited way) the realities of being tortured and living in fear. And the way governments can attempt to dehumanize targeted enemies of the state (in this case it was lesbians and gays).I do not like it when topics such as torture, war, and revolution become too intellectualized. This scene is very sad. I cry every time I watch it. Those of us, especially living in countries that have yet to make these scenarios common practice, should be in awe of those (in any country) standing up to repression, no longer fearful to resist.