Think Egypt

The security guard: Wala Alsad


Wala Alsad pats down women at a security checkpoint before they enter a makeshift medical clinic in Tahrir Square. She is looking for weapons.

The shy 30-year-old says she has enough money to live a comfortable life. Her husband is a nurse; she has a bachelor degree in geography but has yet to find a job.

Alsad has come to the square to help the protesters check for weapons. She says her heart breaks for the Egyptian people, many of whom she sees struggling to survive. She has just run into an old friend whose husband has lost his job, forcing her to beg in the streets.

“Life is very difficult for so many,” she says. “I thought this day was very far off.”

If only the government paid more attention to agriculture, she adds, perhaps there would not be so many people lining up for bread.

Alsad continues in Arabic, her words filled with raw emotion.

“I hope children can return to living their childhood; that they will have a proper education and health care; and that the Egyptian people will be able to go vote and really participate in their government.

“I hope Egypt will be the best country in the world.”

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