Egyptian activist Gigi Ibrahim is an incredible young women. She is part of the wave of young people pouring into the streets screaming for 'Changes in their governments', Freedom and Democracy". This is a movement that I fully support; in a part of the world that I admittedly do not understand well. I have made only one trip to the Middle East; in 1999, for a conference and business meetings for a former employer. But in my time there I was treated to the Westernized Version of the Middle East; being shown little outside of my hotel and conference sites.
Many Americans and Europeans to a lesser extent owing to their physical proximity and long standing dealings, have a weak understanding of Middle Eastern Culture and Politics. Our governments believe that they have an understanding and I think they may well be delusional on this point. I believe that most Middle Eastern people would agree with that assessment.
Last night I heard as much from Gigi Ibrahim but I heard something else that was quite disturbing to me. At the end of her interview she said "Do Not Hijack Our Revolution". The people she is addressing are those, outside of Egypt, who want to try and take credit for what the Egyptian people accomplished.
During the crisis in Egypt every American news outlet shook the moth balls off their out dated, and so called Middle Eastern experts, and rushed them in front of the cameras to inform the American public about what was going on . Some of these 'experts' had not been in Egypt since the last Pharaohs reign but presumed to tell us how the Egyptian people, dying in the streets, were feeling or why they were protesting. These 'talking heads' tried to fill us with their ideas, many times drawn from out dated information or misunderstanding, about who was responsible for the Egyptian Uprising. I heard everything from The Muslim Brotherhood and Ben Laden to Western Governments working behind the scenes. Many worked very hard not to recognize a 'People Uprising'. This same event, in Tunisia just a short time before, went barely noticed until a 'trend' was beginning to appear.
Thank God the 'Citzen News Repoters' were there to tell us what was really going on. They gave us a unique prospective on events in a way not experienced by us before.
"Do Not Hijack Our Revolution"~~Can you imagine if the French tried to claim responsibility for the American Revolution. "Do Not Hijack Our Revolution" would have been heard screamed in 1776 and rightly so. I wonder sometimes if some people believe that revolution, of the sort seen in Egypt and Tunisia, is a strange event because it is for Democratic Freedom and not the sort of freedom that results from 'Marxist Revolution'. Something to ponder?
At this very moment the peoples of other Middle Eastern countries are in the streets. As Americans we need to support them and nurture the glow of freedom. But please "Do Not Hijack Their Revolutions". The work is on their backs. The credit. all the credit, goes to the people who rose up and demanded freedom.