Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Kufiya note: Egypt and CNN

Arwa Damon of CNN, broadcasting from Benghazi this morning (7 a.m. Cairo time), was wearing a black-and-white kufiya. She was speaking with Libyans in Arabic, which I found impressive--not something you see your US correspondents based in the US doing that often. 2-3 weeks ago, in the early days of the uprising, CNN's Ben Wedemann was wearing a black-and-white kufiya while he was broadcasting from Benghazi. In both cases, I think the kufiya was meant to send a subtle sign of sympathy for the rebels.

I checked out Arwa Damon on wikipedia, and learned these significant facts. Damon graduated from Roberts College in Istanbul. Her mother is Syrian. Her father, George H. Damon, is currently headmaster of the American Community School in Beirut. I met him last July at the ACS reunion in Austin, TX. (I'm an alumnus.)

On another note, I asked a friend about the wearing of kufiyas in Cairo and the revolution. He said that he thought that you see more kufiyas in Cairo now in the wake of the struggles on Tahrir from January 25-February 11. It's certainly true that you see a lot of people wearing them in Cairo this week, in all sorts of colors and on all sorts of people. On Sunday we ran into a demonstration of schoolchildren from outside Cairo, and their teachers on the Corniche, across the street from the Ministry of Information. Two teenaged boys in the group were wearing pink kufiyas.

My friend said there was a shop selling kufiyas at Tahrir during the period when it was occupied. He thought it signified an international symbol of revolution.

Hopefully in the next few days I'll take a photo or two of Cairo kufiya wearers and post it.

No comments: