A series of uprisings known as “The Arab Spring ” forever changed the political landscape in the Middle East. There are a number of factors that have led to the protests including: dictatorships, human rights violations, political corruption, economic decline, unemployment, and extreme poverty. Surprisingly, it is the youth that has been at the forefront of the movement and letting their voices be heard. Young and unemployed, many felt that the government were neglecting the citizens issues so they decided to stand up for their rights. Even more remarkable, the revolts have sparked reform and they have gotten some of the results they were looking for. Some might say that these peaceful protests can lead to violence with such a large gathering, but with such despair people really don’t have much of a choice.
What really stands out about The Arab Spring Movement is the quickness in which the protests began. It all began when 26 year-old street vendor Mohamed Bouazizi was harassed by the corrupt police of Tunisia and they confiscated his produce because he supposedly didn’t have his license. His reaction was self-mutilation and he set himself on fire, igniting a revolution by an entire generation. It only took one action to spark an entire revolution and there are lessons to be learned from that. In order for change to occur, someone must first stand up and be a leader. This is often easier said than done as people often find it difficult to stray away from the pack and be willing to put themselves out on a limb in order to get their point across. Once one invidual takes a chance others often gain the confidence to follow, before you know it there is a revolution in the process. This should be remembered because sometimes people feel as if there voice don’t matter or that there issues won’t be solved. The youth in the Middle East should be extremely proud of what they were able to accomplish in such a short amount of time. They were able to get multiple government officials to agree to step down from their offices and finally got their point across in only three years and counting. Through the actions of the Millennials, the political atmosphere in the Middle East is forever changed.
The Arab Spring Protests have so far been a success. Tunisia, Jordan, Oman, Libya, Iraq, and numerous other countries have seen a change in ministers and government reform across the board. In these under-developed countries where democracy was once just an afterthought, these changes are a landmark. They are finally breaking away from the oppressive shackles they were born into and changing an entire culture. I have been keeping up with the Middle East since the War began, never would I have imagined that the government would actually cooperate with the citizens. The Millennial generation was able to do what those before them were unable to accomplish. This further reassures the positive stereotypes about my generation. We are brash and outspoken, unafraid to stray away from the social norm.
With people living in these poverty stricken countries, I can not but help to sympathize with their movement. I couldn’t imagine just being completely hopeless in life and struggling to making ends meat with no viable way to make a better living for myself or my family. Until problems are finally faced head on and recognized, no change will come about. If the oppressed people don’t stand up for themselves, then the powers that be will continue to take advantage of their ignorance. I was raised to always speak up for myself and stand for what I believe in. To do the right thing for myself and others even when it may seem irrational. And most importantly to be a leader and not just follow along with everybody else just because it seems like the popular thing to do. No different than any other movements such as the Civil Rights or Women’s Suffrage, problems aren’t solved until people stand up together. A revolution is no easy thing to accomplish and I greatly admire their courage. To come from such humble beginnings, the Arab Spring Movement has achieved its intended goal and has been an overwhelming success.
Works CitedNpr.org The Arab Spring: A Year Of Revolution
- Wikipedia.org- The Arab Spring
- CNN Reports, ” The Arab Spring- What is it?” http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2z-rKjTivDs
- Npr.org “The Arab Spring: A Year Of Revolution”