Wael Ghonim, Interview on CNN with Ivan Watson, Transcript [I say it is worth reading | partial? Video clip is on their page]
Ghonim: “Watson: Did you plan a revolution?
Ghonim: Yeah we did.
Watson: What was the plan?
Ghonim: To get everyone on the street. Number one is that we were going to start in poor areas. Our demands are gonna be all about what touches people’s daily life.
Watson: There’s been a lot of speculation about Muslim Brotherhood being involved in this uprising. How would you describe yourself and your friends who helped mobilize for the first protests on January 25th?
Ghonim: Muslim Brotherhood was not involved at all in the organization of this. Muslim Brotherhood announced that they were not going to participate officially and they said if their young guys want to join, they’re not going to tell them no. if you want to free a society just give them internet access. Cos people, the young guys, you know, are all going to go out and see biased media, see the truth about other nations and their own nation and they’re going to be able to contribute and collaborate together.
Watson: Was this an internet revolution?
Ghonim: Definitely, this was an internet revolution. I’ll call it revolution 2.0
Watson: The Egyptian government right now is talking about change, its talking about committees, constitutional reform in the last parliamentary elections, respecting the demands of the youth, stopping arrests, liberating the media. What do you think about these messages?
Ghonim: This is no longer the time to negotiate unfortunately. We went on the streets on the 25th and we wanted to negotiate. We wanted to talk to our government, we were knocking on the door. They decided to negotiate with us at night with rubber bullets, with sticks, with water hoses, with tear gas and with arresting about 500 peiple of us. Thanks, we got the message. Now, when we started escalating this and it got really big they got the message.
Watson: Your arrest – do you think it was just a coincidence, sweep of the streets or where you targeted?
Ghonim: No I was targeted of course – they wanted me
Watson: What was going through your mind at that moment?
Ghonim: I was super-scared
Watson: You were blindfolded?
Ghonim: Yeah I was blindfolded
Watson: For the whole time
Watson: You were blindfolded.
Ghonim: Yeah, blindfolded. Of course.
Watson: For the whole time.
Ghonim: Yeah, of course. Today I was giving the complete power of attorney to my life, everything I own, my bank accounts, everything, because I’m ready to die and there are tons of thousands of people there ready to…
Watson: You gave power of attorney to your wife because you think you may die?
Ghonim: Yeah, of course.
Ghonim: They gave us a lot of promises, you know, about gradual change in tone, but then going back to the interview Omar Suleiman did a couple of days ago, he said that Egyptians are not ready for democracy now.
Watson: What do you think of that?
Ghonim: So, I think, this is actually a real problem with the regime, just the fact that you get some few people to decide that they are of a better, you know, are a better position to decide for a nation and then use, you know, media to brainwash people. Use the baseball bat to hit those who, you know, who decide that they want to say no.
Watson: Do you feel any responsibility to the people who died?
Ghonim: No, no. You know, I am sorry, but I don’t…I am sorry for their loss (breaks down) You know, I can’t forget these people for their (unclear) to remember them. This could have been me or my brother and they were killed, they were killed, as if they, you know, you know. If these people died in a war, that’s fair and square. You know, you hold a weapon and, you know, someone is shooting, you know. And you died, but no. None of them. And those people who were killed, were not like, they did not look like they are, they did not really look like they are going to attack anyone. They were just shooting them. They were shooting them a lot of the times the people were, you know, the police men would stand on the bridge and shoot people down. This is a crime. This president need to step down because this is a crime. And I, I’m, I’m telling you, I am ready to die. I have a lot to lose in this life. I, you know, I work, or, you know, now as I’m on a leave of absence, I work for the best company to work for in the world. I had the best wife, and I have the best, I love my kids, but I’m willing to lose all of that for my dream to happen and no one is gonna go against our desire. No one. And I’m telling this to Omar Suleiman. He is gonna watch this. You are not gonna stop us. Kidnap me. Kidnap all my colleagues. Put us in jail. Kill us. Do whatever you want to do. We are getting back our country. You guys have been ruining this country for 30 years. Enough. Enough. Enough.”