Boston’s Egyptian Youth: Two Years Later

In Cairo today, opponents of ousted Islamist president Mohamed Morsi occupy certain corners of the city. Morsi’s supporters occupy others. No one is seeing eye-to-eye, and the country feels as fractured, if not more, than it was during its historic 2011 uprising.

But Egypt’s military leaders also took a step forward after Monday’s mass-killing of more than 50 Islamist protesters. The country’s interim government has announced a six-month timetable for a return to civilian democracy, and appointed a temporary prime minister, Hazem el-Beblawy, a prominent Egyptian liberal economist.

Ramadan begins today. For Muslim Egyptians, the month-long ritual of fasting and purity, may be one of the few sources of solidarity remaining as the country struggles with crisis in this latest wave of the Egyptian revolution. Two years ago, at the height of the first Egyptian uprising, we spoke with a group of young Egyptians who were living in Massachusetts when former President Hosni Mubarak was thrown out of power. Then, they felt a surging sense of joy, possibility, hope, along with a little trepidation. Today, we’ve invited them back.


Ena El-Hadidy, student in English and biology at the University of Massachusetts Boston.

Hesham Hamoda, an attending psychiatrist at Children’s Hospital and instructor in psychiatry at Harvard Medical School.

Habib El Magrissy, student in international business at Northeastern University.