Equating the protests in Istanbul's Taksim Square with those held two years ago in Cairo's Tahrir Square, and calling the Turkish unrest a "Turkish Summer" comparable to the "Arab Spring" is ridiculous.
Like New York's joyously crowded Grand Central and the Arab world's historic squares, Taksim is a public space that in the minds of nascent autocrats risks not merely to accommodate unrest but actually to kindle it.
While I was in Cairo, I kept thinking the Egyptians should check out Istanbul. Both are megacities with over 10 million people. Both come from a poor ...
Meeting Yousry Nasrallah face to face is a true luxury. Not because the Egyptian filmmaker makes himself precious -- quite the opposite really -- but because Nasrallah's extraordinary insight, languid expression and sensual voice all combine to create the most perfect conversation.
Like any other postrevolutionary nation, the purging of Egypt's governing institutions from the influences of the Mubarak regime are as natural as the flow of the Nile. In a surprising demonstration of political shrewdness, however, Egypt's judiciary has transformed itself for the good.
The revolution here is barely two years old, and any visitor to Cairo with an interest in peoples' struggles (like me) will find plenty of opportunities to learn more.
Much of the music on the Native Informant album speaks to my love for the Arab World, the beauty of its people, the generosity of its culture and my relationship with its artists and poets.
I am a Protestant Christian, and a burden I bear all my life is what's called the "Protestant work ethic." I was just in your wonderful capital city, and my work ethic drives me to make a suggestion.
All over the world, markets come with the charming and melodic song of merchants selling slicers, dicers, bras, and knock-off DVDs. A stroll down this lane in Cairo takes the sound of commerce to new heights. Give this a listen.
How does an Egyptian rise above the insanity of the streets? Get an education, hope you can marry into a good family (weddings are still generally arranged between families, and after the match is made, the hope is that love may grow), move into the suburbs, and join a social club.
The typical American traveler to Cairo will need a refuge. While I like to think I'm a rugged traveler, to be honest, I'm able to thoroughly enjoy Cairo only because I have the refuge of a towering international-class hotel.
With the power of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, I can't help but wonder about changes creeping into public life here. (To envision this in the USA, imagine if Pat Robertson won the presidency and his friends controlled Congress.)
Access to water is a central issue for slum dwellers around the world. Getting water is often a time-consuming endeavor that involves waiting in long lines and walking great distances. Water is often more expensive for the poor than for the wealthy, demanding a large portion of families' budgets.
Khan el-Khalili, one of the largest markets in the Arab world, is a tourist magnet. And even today -- with almost no tourism -- it still feels touristy.
I just flew from Seattle to Cairo. After being here for just a day, it seems like a week. Of course, I swung by the pyramids, got my mug shot with the Sphinx, and rode a camel. But the real fun has been feeling the pulse of post-revolutionary Egypt in the chaotic streets.
Do you know what a jasmine flower looks like? If you close your eyes, can you see it? Can you smell it? It is the ancient smell of calm. The cool beauty of the night.