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Full text of "The Egyptian Problem"

280                  THE EGYPTIAN PBOBLEM                  CHA:P.
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a formulated policy and definite aims, and it is not afraid to state them. Its policy may be merely destructive and many of its methods very discreditable, but one has to recognise its capacity for organisation aijd its untiring energy. Its leaders do not spare themselves. They not only fill the Press with fiery articles and pour out their eloquence at public meetings. They travel about the country, setting up local committees and sub-committees, canvassing every interest that can be enlisted in support of their cause, even spreading their jiets abroad wherever they can hope to capture foreign sympathies. They never allow people to forget for a single day that they are making history.
Ministers meanwhile sit in their offices in Cairo and let them make history in so far as martial law does not interfere with the making of it by disorderly or flagrantly unlawful demonstrations. It has been hard enough indeed to find any Egyptians willing to take office since Rushdi and his Cabinet, who had kept an Egyptian Government in being throughout the long five years of war, resigned, when, even after the Armistice, the British Government refused to allow him to come to London to discuss what the Protectorate was to stand for, after peace was restored. Mohamed Said's only political utterance whilst he was Prime Minister was to protest against the dispatch of the Milner Commission. For the rest, he publicly washed his hands of politics. His successor, Yusuf Wahba, has                  I
never expressed any views at all on the great political                 ?
issues with which the future of Egypt is bound up.   He                 r
and his colleagues, like their immediate  predecessors,                  [
carry on as best they can in the circumstances the admini-                  f
strative work of their departments. But when Ministers have ceased to exercise any authority as a Government, they can hardly be expected to supply the driving power required to keep the provincial administration going in a country in which even the highest officials have not yet learned to rely upon themselves. Governors and sub-governors do not know where to look for guidance, and                            ^