In Tahrir, the cacophony of creating Egypt's future

The World

CAIRO — After Friday prayers in Tahrir Square Oct. 21, a small demonstration lurches into motion. As the scheduled speakers consult with their staffs, flags are hoisted, a P.A. system is rigged up, snack vendors and shoeshine men form a loose ring around the crowd, the mundane details of revolution attended to on a sunny afternoon in Cairo.

It doesn't take long for arguments to start rending the crowd. In every direction, people are shouting at each other to shut their mouths, arguing about Egypt's future, the continuing crisis in Syria and Gadaffi's death.

The main speaker at the demonstration was Sheikh Gamil Alan, a dean emeritus at Cairo's al-Azhar University, Islam's most prestigious theological institution. As he addresses the crowd, his microphone howls with feedback and distortion, an eerie sonic testament to the confusion and disharmony in the square. 

Will you help our nonprofit newsroom today?

Every week, more than 2 million listeners tune into our broadcast and follow our digital coverage like this story, which is available to read for free thanks to charitable contributions from listeners like you. But less than 1% of our audience supports our program directly. From now through the end of the year, every gift will be matched dollar for dollar by a generous donor, which means your gift will help us unlock a $67,000 challenge match.

Will you join our growing list of loyal supporters and double your impact today?