Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Natasha Lipman: Libyan Youth Voices - The Real Voices of a Revolution

Natasha Lipman

, Founder and Director of the International Political Forum

The Arab Spring presented a series of complex and significant social, political and cultural changes in the course of a few years. However, as the world continues to make sense of the the present situations in these countries - of society, social relationships, politics and global relations, the contribution of the region's youth is something often glossed over by the international media, policy makers and by governments both in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) and in and the international community at large. A domino effect sparked by a young fruit vendor named Mohamed Bouazizi from the small town of Sidi Bouzid in Tunisia spread to Egypt, Yemen, Bahrain, Libya and Syria. Armed with nothing but their voices calling out for their freedom, the youth demonstrated a bravery that the generations before could not harness.

It is imperative to recognize that young people were not only a vital element in the popular uprisings that took the region by storm, they were actually the ones who led these historical movements; and it is precisely for this reason that youth in the MENA should not be brushed aside by those whose space in government they forged. Furthermore, the reputation of youth in MENA should be protected and misconceptions cleared.

In Libya, making up the majority of the population, young people were waking up to a world where they were not welcome. A world they knew was growing increasingly small and familiar - where globalization was driving meaningful interactions around them, simultaneously excluding them. Young people in Libya were realizing that their governments did not want to support their growth but rather stunt it in order to maintain the dehumanizing conditions that their parents had endured...............

FULL ARTICLE: Natasha Lipman: Libyan Youth Voices - The Real Voices of a Revolution

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