10 Things That The Egypt Riots Can Teach Us About What Happens When Society Breaks Down The rioting in Egypt is perhaps the biggest single news story so far in 2011. The pace at which Egyptian society has been transformed over the past week has been absolutely breathtaking. A few months ago, nobody would have ever dreamed that there would be huge riots in the streets of major Egyptian cities calling for the resignation of Hosni Mubarak. But it has happened, and now Egypt will never be the same again. So what does the future hold for Egypt? ...So far more than 100 people have died during the rioting that has rocked Egypt over the past week. Other reports put the true number of dead much higher. Scores of shops and businesses have been looted. There have been dozens of rapes. Groups of citizens have formed vigilante groups to protect their own homes. These are the kinds of things that happen when society breaks down. But could such a thing happen in the United States? Of course it could. Just remember what happened in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. Imagine what would happen in this country if a disaster on an even larger scale happened. Would any of us be truly safe? Unfortunately many Americans will never start to prepare until it is far too late. But for the rest of us that are willing to learn, there are some things that have happened during these Egypt riots that are important lessons for all of us…. #1 When society breaks down, people look for whatever weapons they can find. Over this past week, abandoned police stations throughout Egypt have been stripped of their arsenals by looters. #2 When society breaks down, nobody is safe. Average Egyptians “armed with sticks and razors” have formed vigilante groups to protect their homes from the crazed looters that have emerged during the rioting. #3 When society breaks down, you better protect your women and children. At least 60 rapes have been officially reported since the rioting began. The unofficial number is surely far higher than that. #4 When society breaks down, criminals do not fear the law. There are reports that at least 4 prisons have been attacked and that thousands of convicts have escaped into the streets. #5 When society breaks down, authoritarian governments begin hoarding food. The Telegraph is reporting that governments throughout the Middle East and North Africa have started stockpiling huge amounts of food in response to all the rioting that has been going on. #6 When society breaks down, food shortages can happen shockingly fast. As commerce has been brought to a standstill in Egypt, serious shortages of some of the most important basic food staples are starting to be reported. Many families in Egypt only have enough food to be able to survive for a couple more days. #7 When society breaks down, respect for personal property goes out the window. All over Egypt shops and businesses are being broken into and totally looted. #8 When society breaks down, mobs will start doing some of the most stupid things imaginable. According to Egypt’s top archaeologist, Zahi Hawass, looters broke into the Egyptian Museum during the rioting “and destroyed two pharaonic mummies”. #9 When society breaks down, it always creates a “power void”. The Obama administration is calling for an “orderly transition of power” in Egypt, but there is absolutely no guarantee that is going to happen – especially in a nation that has no history of legitimate democracy. #10 When society breaks down, often outside influences are involved. The individual being touted as the new “leader” of the protest movement in Egypt is Mohamed ElBaradei. Read the rest of the article here.