Tamarod Campaign Launch

April 28, 2013 . By

Mahmoud Badr, Hassan Shaheen, and Mohammed Abdul Aziz launched the “Tamarod” (Arabic for “Rebel”) movement. The movement is an attempt to display the Egyptian public’s lack of faith in the man they had elected president less than a year earlier.

The group announced their goal: fifteen million signatures by June 30 to call for early presidential elections. Petitioners signed to agree that “[Morsi] has been a total failure” and “the average citizen has not had any of the goals of the revolution fulfilled – not bread, freedom, social justice, nor national independence.” Therefore, Tamarod asked to “withdraw confidence from President of the Republic, Dr. Mohammed [sic] Morsi.”

From the beginning of the Tamarod movement, the campaign leaders employed a discourse of alignment with the armed forces, but insisted that the military would only support the popular will of the people. Tamarod called for a “people’s coup.” The initial campaign also labeled the Muslim Brotherhood a “terrorist” group, a tag that the military would later adopt.

Signers stood on medians and street corners in the cities and traveled throughout nineteen of Egypt’s 27 governorates to reach rural areas as well.

Tamarod campaigners wanted to relocate opposition from the squares and gathering places in order to incorporate more people. They also wanted to demonstrate the Morsi had lost his legitimacy, as derived from the will of the people. In a series of tweets on April 22, Mahmoud Badr announced a million-man march and referenced the palace as a potential target.