Wael Ghonim's letter to Tantawi

It speaks for itself, was posted on Facebook (where else — although perhaps he should have used Google+), and is reproduced below to save you time.

Here are some reports on it:

I write to you after seven months have passed since the initial spark of the January 25th revolution. I write after I sought inspiration from the company of history books for the past few weeks to learn about our previous revolutions. I wanted to understand the real dynamics behind them and attempted to liberate myself from the influence of school curricula that imposed a single perspective; that of the decades-long rulers of our nation.

Without deliberation on my part, God has willed that my name became one of the many associated in people’s minds with the revolution. The association was formed when I was released from detainment where I had spent a brief period – brief, compared to the thousands who spent years and months in lockup or even lost their lives for the sole reason that they demanded an end to the agonies of our nation. I write as I picture my son reading this letter in 30 years. It makes me feel overwhelmed by the historical responsibility that I was forced to bear.

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Video: The Ghonim conspiracy

Very funny video lampooning the conspiracy theories about Wael Ghonim, to the tune of Hava Nagila.

Issandr El Amrani

Issandr El Amrani is a Cairo-based writer and consultant. His reporting and commentary on the Middle East and North Africa has appeared in The Economist, London Review of Books, Financial Times, The National, The Guardian, Time and other publications. He also publishes one of the longest-running blog in the region, www.arabist.net.

Wael Ghonim relaunches the revolution

Everyone following events in Egypt knows by now that, last night around 11pm on Dream 2, Wael Ghonim — one of the instigators of the January 25 movement who has just been released after 12 days in detention — gave the country one of the most moving moments of television I have ever seen. After explaining his ordeal, his ideals, and his views on why the people in Tahrir were right, host Mona Shazli showed pictures of the "martyrs" of this uprising. Ghonim broke down and cried, saying as he sobbed: "It's not our fault. To the mothers and fathers, it's not our fault. It's the fault of the people in positions of authority who don't want to leave power."
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