Chris Cassidy

Chris Cassidy is a freelance writer based in Washington, D.C. His writing has been featured in the Harvard Law Record, Justice Watch and the Huffington Post.

Recent Articles

There Will Be (More) Blood.

Two protesters dead in Iran; violent clashes in Yemen; and at least two deaths in Bahrain. It's another day in the new Middle East, as people-powered revolutions in Tunisia and Egypt continue reverberating across the region. The Internet certainly didn't deliver Tunisians and Egyptians from from their rulers. It was a tool utilized by savvy organizers to mobilize people to reach for their shared ideals. Among the aspirations shared by protesters in Bahrain today is avoiding a beating by security forces. There, organizers are banking on the notion that where there are cameras, there isn't live ammunition. Appalling amateur video from Bahrain allegedly shows peaceful protesters fleeing as police charged and pelted demonstrators with tear gas canisters yesterday. An estimated ten thousand marchers joined a funeral procession held there today for a protester killed when police opened fire on a demonstration this morning. Bahrainis are demanding greater inclusion of the Shia majority in...

Anatomy of Egypt's Youth Revolution.

The New York Times humanizes the ongoing Pan-Arabian revolution with uncharacteristically poetic prose that describes two years of collaboration between Tunisian and Egyptian youth: The exchange on Facebook was part of a remarkable two-year collaboration that has given birth to a new force in the Arab world — a pan-Arab youth movement dedicated to spreading democracy in a region without it. Young Egyptian and Tunisian activists brainstormed on the use of technology to evade surveillance, commiserated about torture and traded practical tips on how to stand up to rubber bullets and organize barricades. They fused their secular expertise in social networks with a discipline culled from religious movements and combined the energy of soccer fans with the sophistication of surgeons. Breaking free from older veterans of the Arab political opposition, they relied on tactics of nonviolent resistance channeled from an American scholar through a Serbian youth brigade — but also on marketing...

Pan-Arabian Revolution and Renaissance.

Nothing since Israel's birth has sparked demonstrations of pan-Arabian identity like the self-immolation of a 26-year-old street vendor in Tunisia. When Mohamed Bouazizi doused himself with paint thinner and struck a match on December 17, 2010, it ignited a shared sense of indignity among those living under the thumb of autocratic rulers across North Africa and the Middle East. Just eight weeks later, pro-democracy activists are celebrating the end of Tunisian President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali 's 23-year rule, as well as Hosni Mubarak's 30-year reign in Egypt. In each country, initial protests were met with violence and media crackdowns, followed by concessions that failed to mollify pro-democracy activists. Protests are now rocking Algeria and Yemen, where presidents have ruled for 12 years and 33 years, respectively. Both countries appear to be following the scripts written in Tunisia and Egypt. Police and pro-government thugs are attacking and detaining protesters and journalists...

A Presidency Waived; a Constitution Scrapped.

"Constitutional crisis" is an understatement. The revolution in Egypt appears to have left the country's constitution in tatters, with military commanders apparently operating outside the legal framework to restore order, protect Egyptians' natural rights, and heed protesters' demands. Hosni Mubarak 's rule has certainly lapsed, but whether he resigned is questionable. Mubarak, the only person empowered to announce his resignation, has not been heard from since his defiant February 10 speech that temporarily dashed hopes for a post-Mubarak Egypt. Rather, the end of Mubarak's 30-year reign was announced by his hand-picked Vice President Omar Suleiman the next day, whose speech was interpreted by Al Jazeera English as follows: At these hard circumstances that our country is experiencing, President Mohamed Hosni Mubarak has decided to waive the office of the president of the republic and instructed the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces to run the affairs of the country. "Waive"?...

Egypt: Now What?

Egypt's military dictatorship, which began after a 1952 coup, retains official control of the country as its third dictator makes for the door. Hosni Mubarak 's resignation is a huge success for the Egyptian people, but their demands for political reforms remain unheeded. Tonight, the Egyptian people revel in their success. Tomorrow, no doubt, they shift towards securing the victories that lie ahead. While there were reportedly 20 million Egyptians partying in the streets, the international community's response was celebratory but measured. President Barack Obama praised the Egyptian people -- especially the youth at the forefront of the pro-democracy revolution -- but he hesitated to conjecture much on what lies ahead for Egypt and the rest of the region. "Egyptians have made it clear that nothing less than genuine democracy will carry the day," Obama said from the White House. Some of the most apprehensive world leaders must be those of Israel, which has maintained a peace treaty...

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