By Ramzy Baroud
".....True, a revolution can be polarizing for those who are projected to either win or lose once its final outcome is determined. But intellectuals have a historic responsibility to remain vigilant of the uniqueness of each and every collective experience, and to place it within accurate historical contexts. They should not omit inconvenient truths when such omissions are deemed convenient.
This is not moral neutrality, a notion that has been articulated by South African anti-Apartheid leader Desmond Tutu in his iconic statement: “If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor.” It is rather the responsibility of the intellectual to question what is taken for granted. Edward Said claimed that the ideal intellectual should be seen as an “exile and marginal, as amateur, and as the author of a language that tries to speak the truth to power.”
Speaking truth to power is still possible, and is more urgent than ever. The fate of a nation, any nation, cannot be polarized to the terrible extent that the Arab uprisings have. On both sides of the divide, some are cheering for foreign intervention, while others are justifying the senseless murder of innocent people by dictators.
There is possibly a fine line between the divides, and it is the responsibility of the intellectual to trace this line, and remain steadfast there. He may consequently find himself marginalized and exiled, but at least he will maintain his integrity."