In light of the January 25 populist uprising, some students are moving quickly to have the Suzanne Mubarak Hall in the HUSS building renamed.
AUC student Omar Omar started an online petition to rename the Suzanne Mubarak Hall because he believes removing the “remnants of the previous regime” will allow the country to move forward.
Shortly after former President Hosni Mubarak left office, his pictures in government buildings and installations were taken down. Sites named in honor of his family members - chiefly Gamal and Suzanne Mubarak - have also been renamed.
In Minya, for example, city residents have called on Suzanne Mubarak Square to be renamed “The Martyrs of the January 25 Revolution” Square.
In some cases, anti-government protesters took matters into their own hands and began crossing out Mubarak’s name from some installations even before he stepped down and handed power to the military.
They scratched his name off the Cairo Metro Station but an alternative has not yet been proposed.
Protesters have also called on the authorities to change the name of the “Mubarak Police Academy” on the Ring Road to “Khaled Said Police Academy" in honor of the 28-year-old Alexandria native who was beaten to death by Egyptian Police last year.
Said became the namesake of a Facebook group which is credited with mobilizing anti-government activists and inspiring the January 25 revolt.
Wielding broomsticks and garbage bags and fueled by their inability to participate in the past weeks’ protests, many Egyptians joined a grassroots initiative to clean up the post-revolution Tahrir Square.
Mahmoud Bondok and Ahmed Alaa are among many AUCians who signed up for the project.
They might aswell have been in alternate universes.
Capturing state media coverage of the protests to the images brodcast by foreign media left many viewers bewildered. They were likely to see the pre- senter on state TV looking anxiously into the cam- era lens, at footage depicted a scene of serenity in downtown Cairo.
Taking the initiative to honor Egypt’s “martyrs” during the January 25 uprising, AUC students gath- ered in the plaza in front of the library to pray for the victims’ souls and to honor their sacrifice as they held out against all odds.
Ahmed Saafan, an engineering senior, started this event on Facebook under the name of “In the memory of our blessed Martyrs,” and has also ini- tiated discussions over how AUC students can be engaged with the community.
In less than a week since former President Hosni Mubarak stepped down and handed all power to the military, economic and political changes have come in rapid succession, often catching the media off guard.
But political analysts agree that the military is faced with a herculean task of stabilizing the country, re- sponding to ever-growing protests in the govern- ment sector and rehabilitating an economy that has been battered by the sudden drop in foreign invest- ments and tourism dollars.
While no medium of mass communication can create the conditions and variables that compound into revolution, social media has served as the catalyst which has helped mobilize disenfranchised popu- lations to express their frustrations about the economic and political status quo.
In two cases, this has ultimately lead to populist dissent.
This has been no more valuable than in countries where state control of the media is inflexible and unwilling to cater to dissenting voices.
While the former government blamed the Tahrir protests for the decline of the economy, ‘unprecedented’ communication shutdown cost Egypt hundreds of millions of dollars.
According to Forbes.com complete Internet blackout in Egypt from January 27 to February 2 resulted in economic losses of between $90 and $110 million. Although experts have yet to determine the exact figure, the estimate indicates that the five-day shutdown cost Egypt a loss of over $18 million a day.