THE BLOG

Let My People Go: President Obama, Help the Egyptians

The land of the Pharaoh is again in turmoil, this time from an internal revolution, a rising up of the people themselves, calling for a better tomorrow, an end to a dictatorship masking as president. The Jewish people can relate well to the injustices faced in Egypt; our tradition even tells us that many Egyptians flew out of the land on the wings of the Israelites ride to freedom. This time it is not 10 plagues, but millions of citizens overcoming oppression. Maybe some of the folks believe it is God that is supporting them, driving them, guiding them; maybe some of them don't. Either way, there is a chance for new life in an ancient land.

Mr. President, this is your moment to use your Nobel Peace Prize stature and help the Egyptians gain their freedom. This moment feels like a massive eruption of historical proportion, one not to be wasted on political strategies that may call for reluctance or passivity. Now is the moment for boldness, for grabbing the reins of the people's call for freedom and help them. That is what America is about, helping others to freedom, not through war or occupation, but through support and leadership. We missed the chance in Iran, which was a mistake, but now it is presenting itself again. Is the Arab world, the populace, finally rising to the call of freedom from tyranny? Is the Arab world ready to break free of the shackles that have been keeping them down for too long? If the answer is yes, we should be standing with them, standing behind them, supporting in any way we can. If the dominoes are coming down on the dictators, this could be a moment of birthing a new world order, one not of terror or extremism, but one of mostly peaceful transition to freedom. I understand the grave danger of putting into place a government that is not friendly to the United States or Israel, which is a huge concern, but with democracy comes challenges. I believe, as I would imagine most Americans do, that the fears that come with a democracy are more worthwhile than the shadows of a dictator. We have propped up dictators for the sake of stability the world over and it is not something to be proud of. Lets be on guard, but supportive of democratic hopes.

As Moses told the people of Israel: Do not be afraid! As Moses told Joshua: be strong, resolute and of great courage. May the people of Egypt find the freedom they are calling for and so deeply deserve. May their uprising, inspired from Tunisia, inspire others to follow suit and march for their freedom. May the American people, and you, Mr. President, stand with them in solidarity and may God bless us in the fight for freedom and peace. When you spoke in Cairo, this is what you were calling for. Now, the moment is here: seize it!