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Where are the stars of the Arab Spring?

Mashari Althaydi

Published: Updated:

In his most recent piece for Kuwaiti Newspaper Ayyam, marking 6th anniversary of the so-called Arab Spring, writer and researcher Khalil Ali Haidar enquired about the fate of the Egyptian Arab Spring political activist and journalist Israa Abdul Fattah?

It is a rhetorical question because “he asked the question knowing the answer”. So it is our turn to ask: Where is the revolution person, the star of Google Wael Ghoneim? He became famous for his tears and was praised highly by US former President Barrack Obama.

Where is Ahmed Maher, Ahmed Domah, Nawara Nejm, Khaled Daoud, Mohamed al-Baradei, Abdul Moneim Abou al-Fotouh and many more? Where is Monsef Marzouki, Tawakol Kerman and his fellow “revolutionaries” in Kuwait, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia and many other countries?

Let us go back to Israa Abdul Fattah who was nominated by a few to win the Nobel Peace Prizel. Khalil Ali Haidar reminds us that “she was disregarded last year and was quoted in a newspaper saying that some people are saying that I am a traitor and an agent.”

A Qabas report on January 26, 2016 said: “The 29-year-old journalist is living alone in her small apartment, hoping that Egyptians will rise again to call for democracy.”

The challenges continue to be the same and not we were told during the euphoria surrounding the Arab Spring

Mashari Althayidi

The myth

We are not gloating here, but we want to take a moment to think about what has happened during the last six years, back when they wanted us to stop thinking and get dragged behind the emotional momentum and Obama’s international support of the Arab Spring myth. It was to be an Arab Spring for the Muslim Brotherhood and Khomeini’s forces as well as naive leftist teenagers and social media fools.

The world now is what we have gotten used to; back to square one. The challenges continue to be the same and not we were told during the euphoria surrounding the Arab Spring: development and justice, not democracy and freedom according to Israa Abdel Fattah’s point of view.

Does this make the current situation in Egypt and Tunisia great examples? It is surely not as there are many difficulties on the economic and living levels. What is certain is that Israa’s dreams about another Arab Spring and chaotic revolution is not the solution. The only solution is the slow and difficult work on the development along with accountability and control.

By the way, a few days ago, my Saudi friend and writer in this newspaper, Abdullah bin Bejad-Otaibi released a book entitled “against the Arab Spring”, in which he documented pages about the chronicles of those days.

Abdullah and few others had written about the chaos following Arab revolution, warning people of the outcome of the revolution…and this is what happened.

The article was first published in Asharq Al-Awsat.
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Saudi journalist Mashari Althaydi presents Al Arabiya News Channel’s “views on the news” daily show “Maraya.” He has previously held the position of a managing senior editor for Saudi Arabia & Gulf region at pan-Arab newspaper Asharq al-Awsat. Althaydi has published several papers on political Islam and social history of Saudi Arabia. He appears as a guest on several radio and television programs to discuss the ideologies of extremist groups and terrorists. He tweets under @MAlthaydy.

Disclaimer: Views expressed by writers in this section are their own and do not reflect Al Arabiya English's point-of-view.