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Becoming a refugee in the United States wasn't a happy choice; it was painful choice I was pushed to take because all the other options are horrifying.
Freedom of speech and association are not options in a democracy -- they are the very foundation of democratic life. I am therefore deeply concerned by last week's announcement by Egyptian authorities that the state of emergency will be extended for a further two months.
About 70 per cent of the Egyptian population is under 30 years old. If we want Egypt to change then each and every one must be a part of this change we want to see. The youth needs to be engaged in the decision making process in order for Egypt to reach stability.
The grassroots Egyptian movement that marshalled millions into Tahrir Square will call this great amassment of people power a revolution. But when the dust settles and the euphoria of another night at Tahrir dissipates, I'm afraid people will wake up to the realization that they are effectively under a military regime.
Egyptians opposed to the Islamists should have endured the pain for the next three years and defeated Mohammed Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood in the next election. As someone who has no love lost for the fascism of the Islamists, I too should be rejoicing the overthrow of Morsi, but I am not. Let me explain why. Egyptians have brought back the military, failing to understand a fundamental principle: if the generals can overthrow their opponents, they will do the same to the liberals whenever it suits them.
As Egypt's democratically elected president, one would hope that Mohamed Morsi would have a finger on the pulse of the Egyptian people. Unfortunately, he's looking more and more out of touch. An online campaign has begun, with typical good Egyptian humour, to nominate Morsi to win a trip to space -- a place where Egyptians hope he might gain some perspective on his role in Egypt's earthly troubles.
As we mark the two-year anniversary of the Arab uprisings, we see plenty of figurative post-mortems on the Arab leaders, or strongmen, that have been usurped by the masses. But what can we learn from these revolutions about the Arab people and the type of government they seek?
Bloopers have always been fun. A good collective laugh is a healthy thing for a society. This would be a perfect year to start the "Democracy Blooper Awards." Here are my favourite anti-democratic moments of 2012. Even at its best democracy has proven to be an out-of-control PR performance where points are given for best spin, rather than outcome.
Even after the Arab Spring, it is too early to tell what Egypt's fate will be. But if there's one thing to be said, it's that military intervention in the form of Ahmed Shafik winning the election might actually save the country. The other presidential option is the leader of the Muslim Brotherhood, a ruthless organization which supported the Nazis, and seeks to suppress democracy in the Middle East.