July 4, 2013
Aliaa Khidr calls Charlottesville her home now but besides her husband and kids, her entire family is still in Egypt. She reflects on her trip last year after the first democratic election and prepares Thursday for this year's trip after the revolution.
When Khidr left Egypt just one year ago, Mohamed Morsi was just elected the first democratic president of Egypt, ever.
"All of the celebration it's interesting for me to go back this year to see the same celebration for a totally different cause, for throwing him out," Khidr said.
Friday, she will fly back to Egypt to visit her sick father right after the protests and celebrations of ousting President Morsi. Khidr says Egypt has taken a massive step backwards.
"Yes, a year did not do anything, people didn't see changes but we lost all that we could have gained y just seeing this process through and getting to the second step," she said.
Shaheem Iqbal moved to Charlottesville two years ago from Pakistan and he knows all to well the cycle that Egypt seems to be falling into.
"Demanding another military coup is not the way to go, and the reason I say that Is because i've seen it happen again and again in Pakistan," Iqbal said.
"What my fear is, is that this government is going to make the people of Egypt believe that by coming on the streets, it's not helping them, the revolution didn't help them."
Both say they wished Egypt was a little more patient in the process.
"All that needs to be done is for people to keep and stick to a democratic system that they have established," Iqbal said.
Khidr says Eqypt is known as a home to everyone in the middle east and it's a country full of culture and life. And those are things she hopes can stay through this transition she hoped would never happen.
"I would have really rather we kept that momentum of starting a democratic process and keeping it in place."