Jake Olzen

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A Democratic Egypt: Worker Justice and Civilian Rule

by Jake Olzen 07-20-2011

After months of good-faith reforms and patience, the drama is back in Egypt's Tahrir Square as protesters are preparing for a potential showdown with the state's military rule. The movement, among other things, is demanding an end to military rule -- a more radical call that reflects both the frustration with the status quo and the hope for a better way.

Two weeks ago, at the "Day of Persistence," Egypt saw its largest resurgence of public protest since former President Hosni Mubarak was ousted in February. The nation-wide protests show Egyptians camping out in Cairo's Tahrir Square, staging sit-ins and blocking traffic in Alexandria, and threatening to shut down Suez's tunnel access to Sinai. So why are the people confronting -- albeit nonviolently -- an interim government that has promised elections and a new constitution? A glance at the collective demands drafted in Tahrir Square make clear that the movement's demands -- both political and economic -- have not progressed much under the military rule of the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces.

The First Nonviolent Revolution? The Resurrection.

by Jake Olzen 04-22-2011
As Lent ends and the Holy Triduum begins, my mind turns to resurrection. Perhaps a bit too soon as the Good Friday death of Jesus and his descent into darkness is still impending.

Undocumented and Unafraid: The Immigrant Rights Movement

by Jake Olzen 04-12-2011

The immigrant rights movement is getting extreme. In the past two years, in addition to some of the largest mass gatherings in the country, undocumented students and their allies have shifted their protest from street marches to civil disobedience.

Afghan Youth Peace Volunteers Yearn for Hope

by Jake Olzen 03-23-2011

In a country torn by 30 years of war, where the promise of peace continues to be broken, despair and resignation seem to be the norm for Afghan society. War -- and its corollaries of social decay, poverty, corruption, and trauma -- does not discriminate.

Wisconsin: America's Tahrir Square?

by Jake Olzen 02-21-2011
A week after a shocked world reveled in Egypt's incredible moment of freedom and people power, Wisconsin is reviving its own unique tradition of people power and creative protest.

The Revolution of the Heart Begins in Community

by Jake Olzen 06-16-2010
For nearly two months oil has gushed into the Gulf because of BP's government-endorsed "error." The environmental destruction has reached epic prop

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