A poem in honour of President Mubarak and other friends of the west

Mubarak and Barack Obama, the best of friends

President Mubarak has gone, despite the very generous $1.5 billion each year he received from the US to keep his people in the state to which they had become accustomed. Throughout the 18 days of protests the west remained unwilling to speak out too strongly against their friend and ally. Like Pinochet, he was a man with whom the west could conduct business.

So here is a poem in honour of

A good despot
People called him a dictator, a tyrant, a despot
I say: that is not the man I know
I know a man of learning, culture, principles
And say this world must have gone mad when
A man, a military man, can give 60 years
Of unswerving service to his nation
And be treated like a common or garden criminal

It was laughable to me, seeing those unwashed beasts
filling the streets with their tatty flags and odours –
Couldn’t you almost smell them through the flat screen tv? –
Bearing their rotting cavitied teeth,
and demanding, what? Some kind of idiot justice
and an end to the rule of a man, a friend to the west
A man who had done his duty and his exceptional best

They said he had feathered his nest a little bit
Well, did he not deserve that for playing such a
calm, considered role in the realm of geopolitics?
We are not talking about anything insidious,
We are talking about a man who
was steadfast in doing the right thing,
A man whose farthest thought was abandoning ship
He has gone now, sating the shameful need of
A nation’s children to be rid of their grandfather.
The next days will be hard, yet I feel sure
he will be wise enough to reflect that
He is merely the latest in a line of great leaders
who leave power quietly admired by the many
while loudly decried by the hotheaded few

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