(MichaelMoore.com) "We stand with you as you stood with us," Kamal Abbas, leader of Egypt's Centre for Trade Unions and Workers Services, said in a Feb. 20 video addressed to the workers of Wisconsin, battling to defend their union rights.
Kamal Abbas is general coordinator of the CTUWS, an umbrella advocacy organization for independent unions in Egypt. The CTUWS, which was awarded the 1999 French Republic's Human Rights Prize, suffered repeated harassment and attack by the Mubarak regime, and played a leading role in its overthrow. Abbas, who witnessed friends killed by the regime during the 1989 Helwan steel strike and was himself arrested and threatened numerous times, has received extensive international recognition for his union and civil society leadership, including an award from the AFL-CIO last year.
English transcript is below the video.
The poster in the background shows photographs of some of the recent young victims of the Mubarak government. The writing says they are among the martyrs of the 25 January Revolution.
KAMAL ABBAS: I am speaking to you from a place very close to Tahrir Square in Cairo, "Liberation Square," which was the heart of the Revolution in Egypt. This is the place were many of our youth paid with their lives and blood in the struggle for our just rights.
From this place, I want you to know that we stand with you as you stood with us.
I want you to know that no power can challenge the will of the people when they believe in their rights. When they raise their voices loud and clear and struggle against exploitation.
No one believed that our revolution could succeed against the strongest dictatorship in the region. But in 18 days the revolution achieved the victory of the people. When the working class of Egypt joined the revolution on 9 and 10 February, the dictatorship was doomed and the victory of the people became inevitable.
We want you to know that we stand on your side. Stand firm and don't waiver. Don't give up on your rights. Victory always belongs to the people who stand firm and demand their just rights.
We and all the people of the world stand on your side and give you our full support.
As our just struggle for freedom, democracy and justice succeeded, your struggle will succeed. Victory belongs to you when you stand firm and remain steadfast in demanding your just rights.
We support you. we support the struggle of the peoples of Libya, Bahrain and Algeria, who are fighting for their just rights and falling martyrs in the face of the autocratic regimes. The peoples are determined to succeed no matter the sacrifices and they will be victorious.
Today is the day of the American workers. We salute you American workers! You will be victorious. Victory belongs to all the people of the world, who are fighting against exploitation, and for their just rights.
Courtesy of Michael Moore's website, michaelmoore.com