HuffPost Canada closed in 2021 and this site is maintained as an online archive. If you have questions or concerns, please check our FAQ or contact support@huffpost.com.

Arab Spring

When we say that nowadays to call for sexual freedom in Arab and Muslim societies is more dangerous than the demand to topple monarchies or dictatorial regimes, we are not playing with metaphor or attempting to gain sympathy. We are stating a bitter and painful fact of the reality in which we are living.
Despite the courageous and tireless efforts of many members of Tunisia's civil society, real democratic stability will fail in Tunisia unless economic policy shifts from milking an impoverished state and stifling economic freedom to creating conditions for meaningful productive employment for all.
During the Arab Spring, social media usage in the Middle East skyrocketed. Social media has become a tool of empowerment, handing the reins over to the citizens. Over in Afghanistan, human rights activist Omaid Sharifi and IHRTP alumnus uses social media in all aspects of his work. Sharifi is a man of all trades, but focuses heavily on women's rights. Recently, he and a large group of civil society activists came together to organize a protest to condemn the recent increase in violence against women in Afghanistan
As reported by his friend Jamil, another vendor, Bouazizi's ultimate, exasperated plea just before he lit himself on fire illustrated eloquently the economic roots of the uprising that came to be called the Arab Spring: "How do you expect me to make a living?" It is a plea the newly minted Tunisian government would do well to keep in mind as it begins to govern.
The recent killing of two Canadian soldiers by self-professed, radicalized young men who became enamoured with a violent interpretation of Islam will bring up multiple assertions about the "root cause" for such attacks. Economic freedom and the institutional "pillars" that undergird it matter.
It's Sin City meets Homeland with a touch of House of Cards; there's something for comic book junkies and global politics nuts, too -- and plenty of food for thought for the rest of us. #foodcrisis is a new graphic novel that portrays the collapse of the world's agricultural system in 2025.
Many International actors, including the U.S. government, support the Egyptian military, in the belief that Egypt's army can restore stability, and, in doing so, stem the flow of refugees out of Egypt. But it's the Egyptian military, through its stubbornness dealing with the conscientious objection issue, which generates refugees every day.
The violence that spun out of the Arab Spring in Egypt, Libya, Yemen, and Syria grabbed the headlines but the real problem received little attention -- lack of opportunity. This lack of opportunity for the people of the Middle East is an issue the West largely ignored and partly caused.
I was sitting on a bench inside the military court that day, accompanied by a military intelligence agent, waiting for my military judge to arrive in the courtroom. It was a spring day, in April 2011, just few months after the revolution started. It was the fifth time I was detained in Egypt because of my activism. It isn't that I can understand the situations of people facing injustice from afar, I can feel their pain, because it's my pain as well.
The enormous influx of Syrian refugees has been difficult for the Lebanese people. Some estimates put the Syrian refugee presence in Lebanon at 50 per cent of the small country's total population. Hala Naufal, an Expert Demographer and professor of Population Studies at the Lebanese University, estimates the Syrian refugee count in Lebanon to now be around two million.