By Jacob Berenson
Sherman himself just missed the beginning of the protest, as he spent his winter break in Cairo.
“I was actually in Egypt when the Tunisian protests began but I actually was not made aware of the events in Tunisia until I arrived back in the states, since the Egyptian media did not report on this,” he said.
He did say that even though his mother was still in the country when the protests erupted, he was only really worried for a few days when the police disappeared.
“I was more worried about looters and other people who were running wild around neighborhoods than I was about pro-Mubarak supporters.”
Sherman said that although it will take Egypt time to build a democracy, he believes that the endeavor will ultimately be successful.
Jehangir Ali Jamali, a Junior from Pakistan, believes that these demonstrations for democracies will be more likely succeed than the democracies currently set up in Iraq and Afghanistan since they are occurring internally.
“Democracy has been confused as a western ideal, but the problem is democracy cannot be imported; the people have to be ready for it and have to want it,” said Jamali.
He feels the United States’ backseat role in the Libya conflict is a good sign for the Muslim world.
Adam Hammouda, a senior whose father fled Egypt in the early 70s, also believes that the events occurring within these countries portray Muslims in a more positive light than the Western media has in the past.
“These were some of the first images of Muslims behaving civilly that I saw on American television,” he said. “When the protests in Egypt occurred, there were these extremely powerful images of Christians protecting Muslims while they prayed in the street that gave me, as a Muslim American, an ego boost.”
Hussein Turk, a junior whose parents are both from Pakistan, is also happy to see fellow Muslims taking to the streets, but is more skeptical about permanent change.
“Overall, I am thrilled that people are fighting for a change in governments. However, I fear for the long-term success of these revolutions because the U.S. has such a vested interest in the Muslim world and its rule by Washington’s favorite dictators.”
He also fears that the U.S. will end up taking a larger role than it currently is within Libya.
“Although the US is taking a smaller role in Libya at present, this has not been the trend in foreign policy with the majority of other Muslim countries.”