“The first several days spent with my new friends in Cairo have allowed me to begin constructing an informed perspective of the historically enshrined meaning of the social experience of being Egyptian. The residual mentality of 'the Pharaohs rule' is being confronted by the sum of a globally informed technoactivist generation who see beyond the confines of the pyramids, to other realities, while choosing not to lose the fundamental identity that the pyramids in the foreground symbolize. The Egypt of today is an applied experience, attempting to fluidly operate under the conditions of multiple, distinct, moments in time. An Egypt that is fighting to embrace the tools and inertia needed to bridge the chasms of perpetually reinforced boundaries, chiseling away with a conviction to engineer a more equitable and productive society.”
“Egypt is at a critical junction in its history. The problems confronted by its people on a daily basis are structural, entrenched, and long-term. The fragility of the countries social, political, economic, and environmental systems is being perpetually weakened by mismanagement, daily power outages, fuel shortages, ongoing threats to water security, economic stagnation, political short-sightedness and the slow deterioration of public moral. The leaders of today are forced to balance short-term crisis management with these long-term fundamental imbalances, and in so doing, further inflate the social, economic, and environmental vulnerabilities that threaten the national security and sovereignty of generations to come.
Fortunately, the complexities faced by the Egyptian people are not unlike those being confronted by other global societies in the east and the west alike. However, it remains to be seen if the heavy reminders an of Egyptian stick-to-itiveness and attention to detail that gave birth to mathematics, astronomy, engineering, and complex medicine over 6,000 years ago can be channeled into developing the next great Egyptian society with the help of their friends.
I do not doubt that the success of Egypt will depend on supporting the optimism broadly shared by a young and vocal generation of Egyptians. An optimism that is secular, educated, forgiving, socially just, and unafraid of taking risks and trying things differently. A generation that is represented by those I've been so very fortunate to grow close to and begin collaborating with during my short time in Egypt as a Gabr Fellow.”