|Members of the April 6 Movement in Egypt|
Recent events in the Middle East and North Africa have revealed new and surprising forms of political activism and reinforced long standing ones. The mass uprising in Egypt has sparked a wave of protest across the region as populations held down for decades under oppressive regimes have openly rebelled. Country after country has seen mass demonstrations met by varying degrees of bafflement combined with brute force from regimes unable to cope with the speed and visceral intensity of dissent from their deeply wounded but now fearless peoples. The use of state sanctioned violence against peaceful crowds has played very badly in the international media and brought great pressure to bear on Western powers that have sponsored the oligarchs and tyrants of the Arab world. Al Jazeera’s informed coverage has almost single-handedly provided a credible, sober antidote to the hysterical whining of the Fox News clowns and lesser species of nuts.