The Egyptian interior ministry has handed newly elected president Mohammed Morsi an unexpected asset to garner public support in his struggle for power by refusing to lift a six-month old ban on professional soccer.
A "xenophobic" ad campaign in Egypt caught my eye during this past week of presidential election drama. Last night, however, I was transfixed as I read a British journalist named Natasha Smith's account of being sexually assaulted in Tahrir.
I've heard this sentiment echoed since the first day I arrived in Cairo last May, where I lived for eight months. I was picked up at the airport by an Egyptian student, Refaat, who said upon hearing that I was Iranian-American: "I love Ahmadinejad."
Completed in just the last few weeks, Words of Witness has a remarkable timeliness and immediacy in depicting the contending forces that are challenging Egypt's journey to democracy.
How exactly do you convince a population that's energized by having at long last deposed a dictator to hold off on elections until the conditions are right? Who decides what those conditions are and when they are present in sufficient strength?
With both candidates claiming victory, irrespective of whoever emerges victorious, the outcome of the election promises to increase volatility and unrest rather than put Egypt back on a path towards political stability.
Depressed, disillusioned and detracted from the political debates, many Egyptians are disappointed that they are left with a choice to pick between "the lesser of two evils."
What legitimacy will the president have if the number of invalid votes is greater than the number of votes in his favor? The revolution will continue until we force the Military Council to hold the proper and fair elections that Egypt deserves after the revolution.
Whoever wins this election, everybody loses. A Shafiq victory ensures continued unrest that will decimate Egypt's economy. A victory by Mohamed Morsi, the Muslim Brotherhood candidate, would give Islamists control of both the presidency and the parliament.
If anyone had begun to question just how hated Hosni Mubarak is, the answer is in the streets now. It suggests there's hope yet that the trial will live up to its minimum promise: hardening popular attitudes against the most cynical machinations of the Mubarak-era police state.
The Arab world's first free and fair presidential elections pose a dilemma and a wake-up call for militant Egyptian soccer fans and revolutionary youth groups as the two surviving candidates seek to win their votes in a run-off next month in which a majority of the votes are up for grabs.
Egyptians are in a situation they have never known before: for the first time they are taking part in a presidential election without knowing in advance who the next president will be. But the question remains: are these elections really fair?
Tens of millions of Egyptians will head to the polls Wednesday to vote for the candidate they hope will move the country from a state of transition to one that is stable and ruled by a civilian government.
"God bless you, sir. My God, I sometimes say if we had dealt firmly with the kids from the start, President Mubarak would still be honored and respected."
As big as the question of who the winner will be, is what the job of the presidency will be like in the short and long term. This new situation in Egypt is an uncertain balancing act between competing forces. We've never been here before.
Egypt has gone through great changes in a short period of time. It shocked the world when the protests, known here as the 25 January Revolution, overthrew the Mubarak regime. Now Egyptians and foreigners alike are eagerly anticipating the next steps.