I’m able to write this today, without the fear of censorship, without the fear of futile efforts and with the confidence that it will be read by at least one pair of eyes that were entitled to the same freedoms.

Today, Hosni Mubarak stepped down as president of Egypt after 30 long years of oppression that encompassed aspects of life that we take for granted everyday.

The Egyptian people have faced spirit-stifling oppression, from political and economic corruption to the simple entitlements, like the right to assemble – which they defied quite extraordinarily in the last 17 days.

Using tools like Facebook, Twitter and blogging, the Egyptian youth initiated a revolution that brought down a regime in just 17 days.  To put it in perspective, it is what the U.S. could not do in Iraq for almost 10 years now.  Egypt’s example of peaceful demands by the people will surely go down in history and change the way in which the calls for change are heard and carried out.

The high-leveled organization and resilience of the protesters throughout Egypt (and those in support around the globe) has showed the world a different face of political reform, lead and fueled by the desire to be free and carried out by simple tools of communication.

Egypt did not only win it’s freedom today; it fought on behalf of you and me for the sanctity of our God-given freedoms.  The iconic picture of a elderly woman kissing a soldier on the cheek so as to welcome his support of the people was immensely moving and demonstrated, in a single frame, the genuine source from which the demands of change were born from.  Only time can tell what will come next for Egypt’s political trajectory and many will wisely hold their breaths in being so optimistic.  Nonetheless, today’s feat is enough to deserve a sigh in relief that, on the path to a more peaceful and just world, Egypt just took a big one for the team.

This is not about Egyptians or about Arabs – this was oppression felt by individuals, just like you, me, that were muffled by oppression for decades.  If you can imagine the pain of a life with limited freedoms, then today, you will have felt the elation of those freedoms redeemed.

After the announcement that Mubarak stepped down from power, tens of thousands of demonstrators in the streets of Egypt chanted, “Egypt is Free!”  Forging the road to a peaceful, just and free society for all, the Egyptian people have allowed hearts around the globe to revisit the deep gratitude of what it means to be free.

About The Author

Fatima is a Blast writer and blogger. She writes The Sweet Life blog.

8 Responses

  1. Rich

    at the beginning of your piece you said ‘peaceful’ in response to what the people were doing. i saw a lot of imagery of ppl getting hurt. what exactly are the qualifications of ‘peaceful demands”?

    • sulma khalid

      the protests began peaceful enough- i.e. lacking violence…but then mubarak’s hired thugs started using violence against the people…including foreign journalists- those are probably the images you saw. the people however, for the most part, remained peaceful throughout the whole ordeal…kudos to them fo sho

    • Fatima Shahzad

      Rich, thanks for bringing this up. I will clarify that the peaceful demonstrations were organized by the people of Egypt, namely the youth, and they made extraordinary efforts to keep things civil, using no violence, and allowing their numbers and civil disobedience to demand that their voices be heard.

      Many of these demonstrators were attacked by pro-Mubarak (many of which were found to be carrying police IDs) bearing knives and other weapons and on horseback. This youtube video shows indiscriminate pummeling of demonstrators by a large vehicle: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qmVjBTcMzMk

      I thought this piece demonstrated well the two sides of the conflict – the people of Egypt (a deeply varied cross-section of society, including Coptic Egyptians (Christians), Muslim Brotherhood members, healthcare workers, and even children) versus the pro-Mubarak forces.

  2. Tosif

    Isn’t it all relative? Without exact numbers, I’d argue that this regime change came with a lot fewer dead/injured people than Iraq, Afghanistan, or Iran. Granted this is the first step in a long process, but Egypt seems to be off on the right foot so far.

  3. Anonymous

    Way to present such an emotional and complicated issue so boorishly. Did you really just take 500 (typo-filled) words just to attribute all the progress of this movement to facebook and twitter? Please save your social media marketing for the thousands of drones who preteneded like they were part of this by posting referred links on their facebook wall. Worst piece on this issue I’ve read to date.


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