Marc Lynch, “A Nobel Prize for the Yemeni People”:
For once, the Nobel committee really got it right. [Tawakkul] Karman has been a tireless, creative and effective advocate for human rights, media freedoms, and democracy in Yemen for years. And Yemen’s struggle for change has been largely forgotten by the world in spite of its almost unbelievable resilience in the face of dim prospects for success. She represents the very best of the new Arab public.
… Karman is an exceptional woman, who has been part of one of the most amazing and impressive of all the Arab uprisings. While some in Yemen resent her international celebrity, she is not a creation of the international media. She has been campaigning fearlessly for human rights, women’s rights and media freedoms for many years, at great personal risk and against long odds. She has been involved with youth protests and weekly demonstrations for years, just like so many of the activist youth around the Arab world who finally broke through in 2011. And her work in Yemen demonstrates how deeply intertwined the different national struggles across the Arab world have been … Her response to the award says it all:
“This is a message that the era of Arab dictatorships is over. This is a message to this regime and all the despotic regimes that no voice can drown out the voice of freedom and dignity. This is a victory for the Arab spring in Tunis, Egypt, Libya, Syria and Yemen. Our peaceful revolution will continue until we topple Saleh and establish a civilian state.”