What is known as the Egyptian Revolution of 2011?

The Egyptian Revolution of 2011 was a revolt to overthrow President Hosni Mubarak. It started on 25th January, 2011. Various youth groups wanted to express their protest against the increasing police brutality during the last five years of Hosni Mubarak’s presidency.

The revolution consisted of marches and non-violent civil resistances. The protesters called for Mubarak to step down immediately. They wanted democracy and free elections. As the demonstrations gained momentum, the Mubarak regime resorted to violent tactics against the protesters. Hundreds were killed. Mubarak tried to pacify the protesters with concessions. He even pledged to step down at the end of his term in 2011. After almost three weeks of mass protests in Egypt, Mubarak stepped down leaving the Egyptian military in control of the country. After a lot of political struggle, Abdel Fattah al-Sisi went on to become Egypt’s president by popular election in 2014.

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What do we know about the Cedar Revolution?

Though the Lebanese Civil War ended in 1989, Syria’s role in Lebanese politics did not. In fact, it only escalated.

Rafik Hariri who was the Lebanese prime minister is credited for rebuilding Beirut after the Civil War. On 14th February, 2005, Hariri and twenty others were killed in a bomb blast. The bombing targeted Hariri’s motorcade; he was conducting a massive political event. The Cedar revolution was triggered by the assassination. The revolution was named after the cedar tree featured on the Lebanese flag.

Just like the Rose Revolution, the Cedar Revolution too chose a path of nonviolent civic engagement. This was despite Lebanon’s bloody political history. The objectives of the Cedar Revolution were as follows:

a. resignation of the ruling Lebanese government

b. withdrawal of the Syrian military

c. an international UN tribunal to investigate Hariri’s death, and

d. resignation of the heads of the intelligence services.

On 2 March 2005, Bashar Al-Assad, the Syrian leader announced that Syrian forces would withdraw completely from Lebanese territory, ending more than 30 years of occupation.

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What is the Jasmine Revolution?

The Jasmine Revolution took place in January 2011 in Tunisia; Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali was forced out of power by a popular uprising. It was successful in replacing an autocratic government with a stable democratic government. The demonstrations and Ben Ali’s removal inspired a series of uprisings especially in Egypt, Yemen, Libya, and Syria which came to be known as the Arab Spring.

The environment in Tunisia was terrible; high unemployment rate and rampant police corruption plagued the country. The first demonstration occurred in Tunisia in December 2010. It was triggered by the self-immolation of a young man frustrated by Tunisia’s conditions. People rallied asking President Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali to step down. The voices of the rebellion spread throughout the country; the police often had to resort to violence to control the crowds.

The clashes between the police and protesters escalated. This was when Ben Ali announced a series of economic and political reforms. His attempt to end the uprising was unsuccessful. Demonstrations continued and Ben Ali was forced to flee the country.

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How did the Rose Revolution get its name?

The Rose Revolution took place in Georgia in 2003 after the parliamentary elections.

The elections were engineered in favour of President Shevardnadze. A group of people assembled against this arrangement and urged the Georgians to demonstrate against the Shevardnadze government. The protestors followed the call to engage in nonviolent civil disobedience against the authorities. The Rose revolution holds the reputation of being a bloodless revolution.

A large group of demonstrators protested periodically throughout the next couple of weeks demanding a re-election. They also clamoured for the resignation of Shevardnadze. Demonstrations spread throughout Georgia.

The opposition protest reached its peak on 22nd November; on that day, the opposition burst into a session of parliament with roses in their hands, interrupting the speech of President Shevardnadze. The revolution gets its name from this incident. The president could not hold power anymore; he announced his resignation.

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What is special about the Hungarian Revolution?

The Hungarian Revolution was a rebellion that took place in 1956 against the communist government of Hungary. It was the first major threat to the Soviet control in Hungary.

The revolution was the result of the new freedom of debate and criticism. The people of Hungary were against the Hungarian People’s Republic and its Soviet-imposed policies. The unrest and discontent broke out into active fighting in October, 1956.

The rebels won the first phase of the revolution, and Imre Nagy became the premier, agreeing to establish a multiparty system. On 1st November, 1956, he appealed to the United Nations for support after declaring Hungarian neutrality. But the Western powers were reluctant to risk a global confrontation.

Later, the Soviet Union invaded Hungary to stop the revolution. Around 2500 Hungarians died and over 2,00,000 fled the country. Nagy was executed for treason following the invasion in 1958.

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