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Thank you to the brave people of Egypt for showing the world what a real revolution looks like. It will be difficult. But nobody expected it to be easy. In the end, time is on your side.

I filmed Jimmy Carter in Cairo today, giving a press conference about the Carter Center’s preliminary findings of the recent Egyptian Parliamentary elections. In a story in the New York Times yesterday http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/12/world/middleeast/jimmy-carter-expects-egypt-military-to-keep-some-powers.html, he said the military had told him they will hold some official political power even after Parliament takes over. At the press conference he announced that yesterday he had talked with the military and they corrected him, saying they plan to turn over full political power to the Parliament. I imagine SCAF (the Egyptian military political arm) were uneasy with the New York Times story; whether their correction will come true remains to be seen.

I met Mona Iraqi at a protest event when she asked me about the camera I was filming with. It turns out she is an award-winning investigative filmmaker in Egypt and she invited me to come shoot in the slums of Egypt with her. She took two of my friends, Kevin Cook and Omar Ali to her house and cooked us some delicious Egyptian food and showed us her films. She has two really nice sons, pictured here.

I met Mona Iraqi at a protest event when she asked me about the camera I was filming with. It turns out she is an award-winning investigative filmmaker in Egypt and she invited me to come shoot in the slums of Egypt with her. She took two of my friends, Kevin Cook and Omar Ali to her house and cooked us some delicious Egyptian food and showed us her films. She has two really nice sons, pictured here.

I am staying in a hostel overlooking Tahrir Square (the view is the first shot in the video). On Friday, January 6, there were several protests against the military (SCAF) rule in Egypt. This protest marched from Tahrir Square, up Talaat Harb Street, to the Supreme Court, at which point they met another protest on the Supreme Court steps and continued the chant on the steps.

Tents in Tahrir Square. A large demonstration is planned for today, Friday.

Tents in Tahrir Square. A large demonstration is planned for today, Friday.

This video has spread around the world, and caused an uproar in Egypt and abroad, particularly the shot where an Egyptian military police officer tears off a female protestor’s clothes and stomps on her open stomach.

Shot at Tahrir Square on December 17, this was also when the military police began firing into crowds of protestors with live ammunition, bringing the death toll to 16 at this point.

The Egyptian military is showing their inability to properly handle large protests; and this greatly undermines their legitimacy in Egypt and abroad. It remains to be seen whether they will make the proper efforts to apologize and reform quickly enough, or if they will continue to lose legitimacy.

It is unlikely the protestors will give up protesting; the military needs to quickly retrain the military police force to respond with the restraint required in an open democracy, until they turn power over to the civilian government. The images from the video above require them to do so.

I produced this video for the University of Pennsylvania in June 2011.