Wael Ghonim


He helped the Egyptians to realise people power. Wael Ghonim embodies the youth of Egypt who inspired the majority of Egyptian society that things could change in a society permeated for decades with a culture of fear. A Google executive Wael Ghonim believed that social media were emerging as the most powerful communication tools to mobilise and to develop ideas. He helped initiate a call for a peaceful revolution in Egypt. It resulted into a potent movement that started with thousands on 25 January 2011 and ended with 12 millions Egyptians removing Hosni Mubarak and his regime. What Wael Ghonim did with Egyptian youth spread like wildfire across the Arab world. Arrested and roughed up by state-security agents, Wael Ghonim was held blindfolded for 11 days in a mouldy prison cell at the height of the protests; but even when freed to the acclaim of protesters in Tahrir Square, he shunned the hero's mantle. In his recent book, Revolution 2.0: A Memoir from the Heart of the Arab Spring, Wael Ghonim writes a gripping account of Egyptian uprising through a Facebook group. His book is likely to become a manual for digital guerrillas the world over.

Compiler: M. Nauman Khan

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