2011 has been exhilarating and exhausting so far, well at least compared to 2010. We ended 2010 with Wikileaks and 90 days later here we are watching the global geopolitical map transform rapidly. Governments changing and regimes falling. Think tanks and analysts around the world playing catch up and attempting to formulate policy for a situation that is changing every second.
This year started for me in Marrakech with two very close friends of mine. A mere seconds in 2011, we received news of the bombing of a coptic church in Alexandria. Back in Cairo a few days later, I spent many hours emotionally discussing of the future of Egypt under such sectarian violence. My fears were sedated as we witnessed Muslims building human shields around churches for the Coptic Christmas mass. In the midst of all of this, I didn't pay much attention to the rapid escalations happening in Tunisia.
The pace of geopolitical change just kept on escalating. Tunisians and Egyptians threw out their dictators. People of Iran, Bahrain, Yemen, Morocco, Algeria, Oman are attempting to do the same. People of Saudi Arabia, Kuwait are contemplating the same. A failed coupe in Qatar and a successful one in Lebanon. The worlds most crazy and dangerous man Qaddafi has launched a campaign of mass murder agains his own people. Summary of all middle east unrest here. Israel is showing self restrain and hiding its panic well. The US is yet to formulate a clear policy towards all of this.
I have spent countless hours on twitter, FB, skype, and the phone, discussing with family, friends and strangers, whats happening in the world today. Whether its helping people realize the magnitude of the change, or just trying to get myself to understand intricacies of the situation. My favourite was a 4 hour discussion on the definition of genocide in international law and whether Qaddafi was conducting genocide or just mass murder in Libya! But it all paid off at the moments of victory. I will remember how over 100 of my classmates collectively celebrated the fall of bin Ali, even though none of us are Tunisian. Or how when I heard that Mubarak resigned I just packed and went to Schipol looking for a flight to Cairo to join the celebrations.
2011, you have and will continue to cause me much stress, I am just glad you give me moments of jubilation. Too bad as you are doing such you are distracting me from my studies! No wonder I dont sleep well and am extremely stressed. Back to studying Stats and Mgmt Science!