It is the smell of digital revolution. From Egypt to Yemen… A roundup

Egypt: An Internet Black Hole

from Global Voices Online by Jillian C. York

Written by Jillian C. York

This post is part of our special coverage of Egypt Protests 2011.

Over the past few days, as protesting Egyptians have utilized social media tools for organizing and disseminating information, they’ve also come across numerous obstacles to access: On January 25, Twitter was reportedly blocked, with Facebook following the next day.  By the 27th, access to both sites was sporadic.

2011-01-27 Palestine Papers Reaction

In a statement to the press, Saeb Erekat, chief PLO negotiator, spoke out against the reports based on the Palestine Papers in Al Jazeera and the Guardian. “In the past few hours, a number of reports have surfaced regarding our positions in our negotiations with Israel, many of which have misrepresented our positions, taking statements and facts out of context. Other allegations circulated in the media have been patently false.”

2011-01-27 Libya is in Revolt as Gaddafi Worries

Libya‘s Moamer Gaddafi may have hailed WikiLeaks for exposing US ‘hypocrisy’ back in December but since the cablegate exposures helped rally the people to throw out Ben Ali in January, he has been singing a different tune. Yesterday Gaddafi “said he feared that the Tunisian revolution which overthrew president Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali was being exploited by ‘foreign interests'” according to France24. In an interview, he told the private Tunisian Nessma TV station ?I fear for the Tunisian revolution.”

2011-01-27 Algerians Plan Big Protest Rally for February 9th

The Algerian opposition is regrouping after thousands of police were deployed on Saturday to suppress several hundred demonstrators. They too are inspired by the Tunisian revolution. With public protests being so strongly suppressed some Algerians have turned to a more drastic demonstration of their opposition to the status quo. At least four people in Algeria have attempted self-immolation, some successfully, since Tunisia freed itself of Ben Ali.

2011-01-27 Tunisia Protests Continues as a Warrant is Issued for Ben Ali

In Tunisia, foreign minister Kamel Morjane resigns as demonstrations continued there. Although they forced President Ben Ali to flee on January 14th, the activists are demanding a complete break with the corruption of the past and the removal all officials associated with the ruling RCD party of the ousted president. Political sources say that the interior and defense ministers are also expected to be replaced in the widely expected cabinet shuttle. The industry and international co-operation ministers are expected to remain from the old government but neither was a member of the RCD. Still, it is not clear if even this complete purge of the RCD will satisfy the people’s demand for change especially now that it is being reported that Mohammed Ghannouchi will remain prime minister. Protesters, who earlier today stormed police barricades in Tunis, the Tunisian capital are demanding a clean sweep.

YouTube, Flickr Show Escalating Violence in Egyptian Protests

from Mashable! by Jolie O’Dell

Egypt: Netizens Rise for the Support of Egyptians on their Day of Rage

from Global Voices Online by Amira Al Hussaini

Written by Amira Al Hussaini

This post is part of our special coverage of Egypt Protests 2011.

The countdown for mass protests across Egypt has started, with very little information trickling from the ground after the Egyptian authorities shut down the Internet and virtually all other communication with the outside world. The aim is to clampdown on the protesters and netizens are fearing the worst.

Egypt: Countdown for Day of Rage Continues

from Global Voices Online by Amira Al Hussaini

Written by Amira Al Hussaini

This post is part of our special coverage of Egypt Protests 2011.

Netizens from around the world are holding their breath, as widespread demonstrations are scheduled to begin in Egypt in less than an hour. International support is overwhelming, as well as a clear defiance to back Egyptian protesters and make their voices heard despite the total information blackout.

2011-01-27 Tens of Thousands Rally in Yemen, Demand Change

There were massive anti-government rallies in Yemen today. Inspired by events in Tunisia and Egypt, tens of thousands took to the streets of the country’s capital, Sanna to demand President Ali Abdullah Saleh’s resignation.

2011-01-27 Mubarak Blinks as Egyptian Protests Continue for 3rd Day

The latest at 6:00pm pst: As protests build and El Baradei returns, Mubarak’s ruling National Democratic Party [NDP] says it is open to dialogue but continues the brutal suppression of demonstrators. More protests are expected on Friday and the Internet is all a twitter with the news.

WikiLeaks: The revolution has begun ? and it will be digitised | Heather Brooke | Comment is free | The Guardian

Internet Access & SMS Blocked in Egypt as Protests Escalate

from Mashable! by Ben Parr

Reports are coming in that Egypt is now under an Internet and SMS blackout, just hours before a new series of major protests are planned against the regime of President Hosni Mubarak.

Israel: Bloggers Eye Gaza as Egypt Unrest Spreads through Sinai

from Global Voices Online by Gilad Lotan

Written by Gilad Lotan

This post is part of our special coverage of Egypt Protests 2011.

This is a summary of Israeli perspectives, blog posts, and media shared online over the last two days, in reaction to the unrest in Egypt. Referenced by Israeli sources as the ?Egypt Intifada’, bloggers are looking closely at the spread of the violence into Sinai and the possibility of igniting violence in the Gaza Strip or the West Bank.

Internet Security Savvy is Critical as Egyptian Government Blocks Websites, Arrests Activists in Response to Continued Protest

from Updates by eva

As we’ve seen in Iran and Tunisia, social networking tools have given activists in authoritarian regimes a powerful voice, which can be heard well beyond their own country. But the use of social networking tools has also given their governments ways to identify and retaliate against them. This week we are watching the same dynamic play out in Egypt. This is why it is critical that all activists ?in Egypt and elsewhere?take precautions to protect their anonymity and freedom of expression. The protests in Egypt this week also highlight another important point: authoritarian governments can block access to social media websites, but determined, tech-savvy activists are likely to find ways to circumvent censorship to communicate with the rest of the world.

Egypt: to thwart protests, government attempts to leave the internet

from Boing Boing by Xeni Jardin

Egyptian activists’ protest plan, translated to English

from Boing Boing by Xeni Jardin


As I publish this blog post, we’re just a few hours away from the planned start time of mass protests in Egypt, possibly the largest yet in a week of historically large gatherings calling for Hosni Mubarak to step down from some 30 years in power. Alexis Madrigal at The Atlantic tells Boing Boing,

What is happening in Egypt, explained

from Boing Boing by Xeni Jardin

Fatimah at the blog Promoting Peace has a helpful post up: a primer on what is happening in Egypt, and why.

NYT: Wikileaks cables reveal details of US-Egypt diplomacy

from Boing Boing by Xeni Jardin

Joe Biden says Mubarak isn’t a dictator, questions legitimacy of protesters’ demands

from Boing Boing by Cory Doctorow

US vice-president Joe Biden told PBS NewsHour that Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak (who as presided over a 29 year reign characterized by blatantly stolen elections, suspension of civil liberties, torture and arbitrary detention) isn’t a dictator and questioned the legitimacy of protesters’ demands. The USA provides $1.3 billion/year in military aid to the Mubarak regime.

How Users in Egypt Are Bypassing Twitter & Facebook Blocks

from Mashable! by Vadim Lavrusik

Saeb Erekat sometimes doesn’t feel like lying (but does it anyway)

from FP Passport by David Kenner

Syria: Internet Users Race to Support Egyptian Protesters

from Global Voices Online by Anas Qtiesh

Written by Anas Qtiesh

This post is part of our special coverage of Egypt Protests 2011.

Food Prices and Uprisings

from FoodAnthropology by David Beriss

There is unrest in Egypt. And Tunisia. These uprisings are being partly fueled by rising food costs, especially bread. The price of bread is driven, in part, by the price of wheat. And, the price of wheat and other crops has been soaring. This has made investors happy but some governments very nervous. Goldman Sachs recently raised ?to 10.0%, from 7.0%, its forecast for investors? total returns from crop futures this year? and noted that the US Department of Agriculture?s downgraded forecasts may drive further increases. Macquarie Banking Group noted that ?2011 would be a year of ?high prices? in agriculture and food, with even products not facing extreme shortages seeing knock-on effects? and this would be driven by US biofuel policy, rising demand in Asia, and another year marked by wheat deficits (world wheat production is estimated to be 17m tons below consumption levels). Things look rosy for investors.

Egypt’s new Suez Crisis

from FP Passport by Blake Hounshell

The violent epicenter of protests in Egypt is an industrial city few outsiders know much about: the seaport town of Suez, which sits astride the Suez Canal as it opens southward into the Red Sea.

Egypt: Friday is the Day of Anger

from Global Voices Online by Amira Al Hussaini

Written by Amira Al Hussaini

This post is part of our special coverage of Egypt Protests 2011.

The Egyptian Twittersphere is full of predictions of renewed demonstrations over the weekend. Dubbed the Million Egyptian March, Friday is expected to witness unprecedented protests across the country, despite government warnings that it would not tolerate any more unrest.

Citizen Media Brings Opposing Political Views to the Maghreb

from MediaShift

The Maghreb is generally a term used to refer to five countries in North Africa: Algeria, Libya, Mauritania, Morocco, and Tunisia. This article explores the current state of the media in the region, and marks the effect that a burgeoning citizen media sphere is having on democracy. It is based on a contribution by the author, Algerian journalist Laid Zaghlami to the book “Citizen Journalism & Democracy in Africa,” an exploratory study undertaken by the School of Journalism and Media Studies at Rhodes University, South Africa, in July 2010. Download a PDF of the publication here.

Egypt: Twittering from the Rooftops

from Global Voices Online by Ivan Sigal

Written by Ivan Sigal

This post is part of our special coverage of Egypt Protests 2011.

The Egyptian Twittersphere on #jan25 is thick with stories of the ongoing unrest. For observers, the rooftops have become a favored vantage. In Suez, Ian Lee @ianinegypt captures the feeling:

WP: The End of History Comes to Tunisia

from Project Syndicate by Pierre Buhler
WP: The End of History Comes to Tunisia Tunisia?s ?Jasmine Revolution? is still unfolding, but we can already read into it lessons about democracy and democratization that extend far beyond the Maghreb. Those who believe that democracy makes the world a safe place have every reason to rejoice ? and to feel historically vindicated.

Egypt: Reports of Police Brutality, Arrests and Live Ammuntion

from Global Voices Online by Amira Al Hussaini

Written by Amira Al Hussaini

This post is part of our special coverage of Egypt Protests 2011.

More reports are emerging of arrests and police harassment and brutality, as Egyptians rise for the for the third day in a row. There are also reports of deaths but the details and exact toll remain sketchy.

Morning Brief: Unrest in Egypt continues amidst police crackdown

from FP Passport by David Kenner

Egypt’s second ‘day of anger (ayaum al-ghadib)

from From the field by arn

2011-01-26 Week of “rage” in Egypt sees casualties, global support [UPDATE 1]

As we reported on Tuesday, Egyptians and other activists working remotely planned to begin protesting on Tuesday January 25. From the start,

[t]here has been a significant amount of support and planning for the protest online, causing the government and police to promise an equally strong suppression. Over 85,000 people have liked the Facebook page for the protest day, calling for a day of revolution against torture, poverty, corruption and unemployment.

The turnout may have surprised even Egyptian authorities, however, and support is coming in many forms. This Facebook page called for video production and quickly received a link to this piece. Many videos are surfacing on Youtube and elsewhere (see the this collection, for instance).

Will Egypt’s protests go the way of Tunisia’s revolution?

from – Op-Ed Columns by Mona Eltahawy
Why Washington is concerned about Arab protests and the potential ‘Egypt effect.’

2011-01-26 The Palestine Papers (Part 2 of 2)

Part 1 of the Palestine Papers summary is here. The summary concludes with the last documents released on January 26th, and Al Jazeera’s editorials on the documents.

Private exchanges between Palestinian and American negotiators in late 2009, when the Goldstone Report was being discussed at the United Nations.

Tunisia ? one or many?

from WhirledView by Patricia H. Kushlis

By Patricia H. Kushlis

The Boston Globe’s recently posted 40 news photographs of the revolution in Tunisia.  These professional shots were likely edited for clarity and focus made easy by digital photography.   They?re almost too clean and too beautiful in their strange way.  Included are  two photographs which tell a story that I?ve not seen portrayed  elsewhere:  one was taken at the hospital bedside of Mohammed Bouazizi, the 26 year old Tunisian whose immolation sparked the revolt, then swathed in bandages being visited by a group of Tunisian officials including the now deposed dictator Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali.

2011-01-26 The Palestine Papers (Part 1 of 2)

On January 23, Al Jazeera announced their possession of 1,684 files of confidential documents related to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and with the release of these documents, they launched their new Transparency Unit. They released the Palestine Papers and reported on their contents between January 23-26th, 2011. The documents include:

Youtubing the current wave of Egyptian protests

from by tabsir

An Egyptian Christian clashes with Egyptian riot police in front of the the Coptic Orthodox church in Alexandria, 230 km (140 miles) north of Cairo January 1, 2011; Photo, Reuters

JOURNAL: Open Source Insurgency in Now Mainstream, So What’s Next?

from Global Guerrillas by John Robb

Cool.  The method of warfare/conflict/protest/revolt pioneered on this blog — open source insurgency — is now mainstream.   This blog’s readers are now practitioners, and it’s being used across the world with Tunisia and Egypt as the latest examples.

Egypt: January 25 Protests in Videos

from Global Voices Online by Hisham

Written by Hisham

Demonstrators took to the streets of Cairo and many other Egyptian cities on Tuesday, January 25 which coincides with a national holiday, ?Police Day?, to protest against the 30-year autocratic rule of President Muhammad Hosni Mubarak. Emulating the Tunisian protests that led to the toppling of now-former President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali a couple of weeks ago, protesters used social networks like Facebook and Twitter to coordinate their actions. Tonight, news networks speak of tens of thousands of Egyptians camped in the main Cairo plaza, El-Tahrir Square, and demonstrations are set to continue Wednesday.

Egypt: After Twitter, Facebook Now Blocked

from Global Voices Online by Amira Al Hussaini

Written by Amira Al Hussaini

This post is part of our special coverage of Egypt Protests 2011.

Egypt today blocked access to Facebook, as part of its clampdown on the transfer of information, following yesterday’s protests. Also, yesterday, it blocked access to Twitter, jammed mobile communications in areas protesters were gathering in, and banned access to live video streaming site Bambuser.

Egypt: Continuous Coverage of the Protests on Facebook

from Global Voices Online by Amira Al Hussaini

Egypt Blocks Access To Facebook

from All Facebook by Jackie Cohen

Egyptian authorities are blocking access to Facebook within the country in an effort to quell anti-government demonstrations organized via the social network.

MOISI: An Arab Spring?

from Project Syndicate by Dominique Moisi
MOISI: An Arab Spring? While it would be dangerous to assume that after Tunisia, democracy in the Arab world is just around the corner, the belief that nothing will change is equally illusory. For better or worse, history is on the move in the Arab world ? and there is very little the West can do about it.

Egypt: Night Falls, After Day of Rage

from Global Voices Online by Eman AbdElRahman

Written by Eman AbdElRahman

As the night sky extended over Egypt, protests in Cairo and around the country continued. News was dominated by events in Cairo?s Tahrir Square, where police dispersed a sit-in with tear gas, rubber bullets, and water canons leaving many people seriously wounded. In Suez, three people were reported dead. In Alexandria, a sit-in of thousands began amidst arrests. In El-Mahala, a large industrial and agricultural city, there were reports on Twitter of police thugs destroying public property in El-Shoon square and of further clashes between citizens and police.

Palestinian leaders scramble to spin Al Jazeera leaks

from FP Passport by Blake Hounshell

In case you haven’t heard, Al Jazeera (along with the Guardian) on Sunday announced it had gotten its hands on more than 1,600 Palestinian documents detailing negotiations with Israeli and U.S. officials. The documents aren’t all released yet, but the story is already roiling the Arab world, prompting fresh cries that the Palestinian Authority is “selling out” to Israel by offering politically sensitive concessions on Jerusalem, its holy sites, and the fate of Palestinian refugees.

Egypt: Protests inspired by Tunisia and fanned by social media break out all over

from Boing Boing by Xeni Jardin

Will Egypt Be The Next Facebook Powered Revolution?

from All Facebook by Jorge Cino

After being wildly credited as the channel through which young rebels were able to organize the social uprising that recently put an end to Tunisia?s 23-year-old government, Facebook may be now facilitating another ?spontaneous? social movement in Egypt.

2011-01-25 Revolution Day in Egypt

Egyptians will be demonstrating today in solidarity with Tunisia and in hope for change within their own government. An Egyptian national holiday in honour of the police, has been renamed ‘The Day of Wrath’, ‘Revolution Day’, and the ‘Koshari Revolution’, the latter referring to a rice, lentils and pasta dish frequently eaten by lower income Egyptians.

2011-01-24 Self-immolation “infection” spreads to Syria

Arabic news portal reports today under the headline “Bouazizi infection in the province of Al-Hasakah, Syria” that a 25-year-old man named only as “Hassan” attempted to burn himself to death, following the example set by Mohamed Bouazizi in Tunisia last December. The report further cites sources claiming that the man was “mentally ill,” but also that the attempt was a protest against unemployment and living conditions in the province of Al-Hasakah. The man remains in critical condition in the hospital under security.

2011-01-24 Tunisia today: “It?s not a unity government, it?s a fake unity government?

Events in Tunisia continue to develop quickly. Protesters from rural areas streamed into the capital overnight, defying a curfew, to protest the continued presence of remnants of the Ben-Ali regime. Here is a round-up of today’s events in Tunisia.

Is Algeria next?

from Wiki Leaks by David Kenner

MAIN FOCUS: Egyptians want their freedom | 26/01/2011

from euro|topics

Tens of thousands of Egyptians demonstrated across the country on Tuesday against President Hosni Mubarak. Three people were reported killed in the tumult. After Tunisia, it’s now Egypt’s turn to free itself, the European press predicts, calling on Western politicians to stop supporting despotic Arab regimes.

Lebanon: ?Day of Rage’ Shocks Bloggers

from Global Voices Online by Antoun Issa

‘Jasmine revolution’ rocks Egypt

Unprecedented protests demanding an end to President Hosni Mubarak’s authoritarian rule took place in Egypt’s capital Cairo yesterday (25 January). Demonstrators said they were inspired by the recent uprising in Tunisia.

Egypt: What is Happening in Suez?

from Global Voices Online by Amira Al Hussaini

Written by Amira Al Hussaini

This post is part of our special coverage of Egypt Protests 2011.

The cry from the seaport town of Suez, 129km east of the capital Cairo, is loud and clear, as demonstrations across Egypt enter their third day.

Arab World: New Media and the Egyptian Demonstrations

from Global Voices Online by Tarek Amr

Written by Tarek Amr

This post is part of our special coverage of Egypt Protests 2011.

The Arab World is looking in awe at the developments unfolding in Egypt. Today, mainstream media is taking a back seat, while citizen media triumphs.

Yemen: Thousands Protesting Against Saleh Rule

from Global Voices Online by Amira Al Hussaini

Written by Amira Al Hussaini

Reports of protests in Yemen are being received with delight across the Arab world, where netizens are showing a lot of support for their Yemeni brothers and sisters.

Valuable coverage from Egypt’s “Day of Anger”

from From the field by arn

An AFP photo of al-Tahrir Sq., Cairo, from Cairo Daily News.

Compelling photographs by Timothy Kaldas from Tahrir during the January 25 demontrations

from From the field by arn

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