“At spring break I told my friends a ‘sick’ vacation would be to come here and fight with the rebels,” Jeon told a perplexed reporter from the Christian Science Monitor, who had found the 21-year-old student, a non-Arabic speaker, encamped with a group of rebels in the desert.
Two weeks ago, Jeon purchased a ticket from L.A. to Cairo. He then traveled by bus over the Libyan border and into the action.
Unlike the scores of American college students with Libyan ancestry who have flocked back to the country to be a part of the movement to overthrow Gadhafi, Jeon has no ancestral ties to the region. Nor does he have any experience with firearms, or express any steadfast political views. Instead, Jeon’s motivation for joining the fight seems to have been born out of the desire to join in history as it was being made.
“This is one of the few real revolutions,” Jeon said. “I just thought I’d come check it out.”