Her Voice Counts
When protests and uprisings broke out in Tunisia in January of 2011, then quickly spread to Egypt and Libya, women were present on the “frontline” standing side by side with men for the fight for freedom and democracy. The Arab Springs gave women the opportunity to participate in roles that they never dreamed of playing.
Women in Libya raised money for weapons for rebels, smuggled bullets in their purses, called in NATO airstrikes, volunteered at frontline clinics, created revolutionary newspapers, and even fought on the frontlines. In Egypt, women said they were treated as equals at demonstrations and in Tahrir Square. “It didn’t feel like there was men and women, just people. It was the first time in my life I felt something like this.” says Dina Abouelsoud, one of the organizers of the International Woman’s Day march in Tahrir Square which followed their revolution.
For most individuals, a revolution suggests positive change and departure from oppression or a tyrannical mechanism. If a revolution supported and fought for by women were obtained, one would hope for and expect reasonable progress. One would anticipate seeing improvement and not digression for women’s rights in the evolving political landscape of the new Arab world.