Liberty and justice exist in a society only so far as each individual defends and safeguards the liberty and justice of his neighbor, his colleague, and his countrymen. His fate is inexorably tied with our own. If his life is lost it will mark a new era; one where when all positive channels to ensure justice are exhausted, and the hope within a new Muslim generation will have been extinguished. Their frustrations will mount and when anger takes hold, rashness will follow and they will become susceptible to the twisted ideologies of groups whose primary ends justify horrific means. This is what we face today.
As Mohamed Soltan approaches death on his 280th day of a hunger strike in protest of his imprisonment, Americans can now confirm a U.S. passport means nothing. It's everyone for their selves as far as the American government is concerned, except of course for a Gatorade and a couple of magazines, given to him on the latest visit by the U.S. Embassy in Cairo officials, in which as described by his mother, "he looked like a man who came out of the grave." In 2012, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton traveled to Egypt personally to intervene in the detention of two Americans, but those were real Americans. They were white and American looking, but Soltan isn't, and that's the problem.
A two-time president of the Muslim Students' Association at The Ohio State University, one of the largest campuses in the United States, and the former Youth Coordinator of the Noor Islamic Cultural Center, Mohamed Soltan connected with the youth of several cities including Kansas City, Detroit, and Columbus. Soltan was working in Egypt with a private company at the time of the unjustifiable military coup. Soltan, like millions of Muslim Americans, believed in democracy. Normally, when the illegal military coup occurred against a democratically elected president, Mohamed Soltan participated in protests. He was arrested after a series of events, simply for being amongst the crowds. The Free Soltan campaign has done everything in our power to attempt to #FreeSoltan, including writing letters to officials, calling representatives, and protesting. Most recently, we sat down with Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson, who we informed on Soltan's plight. When the campaign began to raise awareness about Soltan's situation, we focused on the human rights perspective, as the jailing of an innocent human being went against every aspect of any basic human right. However, now with medical reports stating that Soltan only has a couple of weeks to live, we must change our course of action. Human rights are utterly cute I might say. You get the attention of a couple of people here and there who are "humanitarian", but for some reason the government doesn't care. Mohamed Soltan was a praised and popular figure within the Muslim community in the United States. In our meeting with the secretary of the DHS, we discussed the fact that there is a general mistrust of the U.S government by Muslim Americans. Mr. Obama, Mr. Kerry, Mr. Official, I promise you, no trust will be gained by Mohamed Soltan's loss, rather, the Muslim American will lose hope completely in your ability to protect and defend U.S citizens here and abroad. There is a certain double standard when discussing Muslim Americans and their political ideologies. On one hand, we see that the DHS discusses how we can avoid radicalism within the Muslim community, especially with the rise of the newest terrorist organization in the Middle East, ISIS. On the other hand, the example of Soltan is one of an American loving believer in democracy, yet, Soltan remains abandoned by the U.S. government. There's only one word for that situation, and it is hypocrisy. Hypocrisy at its finest. Ironically, Soltan worked strenuously during Obama's 2008 presidential campaign to ensure that Obama would become the U.S president. Now, Soltan is abandoned by that same man. If the American government would like to clear up its image, now is the time to do so, and what better opportunity than this one. I speak on behalf of every single Muslim American when I say that we don't have much to be positive about when it comes to what the U.S. government has done for Muslims, but what I can say is that your defense of a selfless and innocent Mohamed Soltan will be a step forward in the right direction.
We call on the U.S. government to pressure the Egyptian authorities to release Mohamed Soltan before his death. His death is imminent, and that cannot be stressed enough at this time. If Mohamed Soltan dies, know that the new generation of Muslims will lose all trust in the U.S government. Mohamed Soltan, our brother, friend, and mentor is #DyingToLive.
Please like and follow the "Free Soltan" pages on Facebook and Twitter for updates.