Chain Reaction Stretches in Middle-East
As Egypt’s transitional power is handed to its military during reform period, Cairo settles. However, the other revolutions inspired by Tunisia have escalated by the example of Egypt. Bahrain specifically.
In the future, we will see successful revolutions and failed revolutions (much like the chain of events following the American Revolution and Europe’s fate). The revolutions have been escalating in Iran, Chad, Jordan, and Bahrain. In Iran, protests have been silenced with force. Bahrain is having the same reaction, but the force is failing. I believe Bahrain will be the next successful overthrow.
The Obama Administration has been commenting on the protests and revolutions in hopes to gain new allies in the Middle-East. But could these comments supporting the people in their revolts hurt the United States? I believe so, and that those close to the United States will be critical of its action and hypocrisy. Liberal foreign policy is all about not policing the world, but is the Obama Administration doing just that in admonishing the governments to not resist the movements? They are. The comments were necessary for Egypt, and possibly are for other revolutions. But these comments can be damaging as well, as it shows an over-extension of United States power.
We must, for the most part, let the events unfold so that in our intentions for good, we don’t cause an imbalance and radical reaction among our enemies in the Middle-East.
Hosni Mubarak Finally Steps Down
Hosni Mubarak today stepped down after angry riots happened outside of his home as a result of his announcement that he will not resign. Mubarak handed all power to Egypt’s military, which is the one institution that has shown great restraint.
Celebrations were common all throughout today. The new military administration will meet with all anti-government groups to establish a successful and open democracy. However, depending on the outcome, this could prove negative for the United States and Israel. Obama extends his arm to Egypt in hopes of an alliance with the new-coming Administration.
However, this is where most failures in revolutions happen. The revolution isn’t over; it’s near beginning. And the transition has just begun. The world’s political super-powers must keep their eyes peeled cautiously, and Egypt must stay strong with a transition. Otherwise, the consequences could be dire.
Al Jazeera reporting that crowds in Alexandria similarly angered by Mubarak speech, calling for march to military base “to demand from the military that they take concrete steps to remove Mubarak.”
Protesters Go From Hopeful to Angry
Hosni Mubarak addressed Egypt tonight, and the 100,000 protesters became hushed. However, soon into the address, it was clear that Mubarak was going nowhere. The protesters started waving their shoes at him (a sign of huge disrespect) and went in uproar. The protests will consequentially continue and, again, escalate.
Hosni Mubarak to Address Egypt on Television Tonight
Anti-government protesters, over the past week, have dwindled, but never gone away entirely. Normality in Egypt returned partially, and demonstrations continued peacefully. After a long while, Hosni Mubarak is to address the country tonight on television, giving people more hope that the ousting of Mubarak will be a success. The Army is taking control and is supposed to hold all transitional power.
That is if Hosni Mubarak even resigns fully.
Promises Made to Egyptian People
Omar Suleiman, Vice President of Egypt, met with representation of anti-government groups and is now allowing freedom of speech/press and is releasing all detained protesters.
He also established a committee filled with opposition group representatives to come up with constitutional amendments to limit presidential terms and give more freedoms to run for public office. Protests and rallies are being uninterrupted and promises are being made to lift all texting and internet barriers and restrictions.
However, despite all these promises, protesters are still angry. Hosni Mubarak may have dissolved the ruling party and much of his position but he is still President and is not departing from Office. It’s a lot of progress, but more must be done, according to the Egyptian opposition groups.
The government continues to make promises, though, such as prosecuting all those that extend government corruption and to figure out why the police abandoned the streets about a week ago and never came back. Many suggest the reasoning is government corruption (pointing to the rumor of paid thugs under Hosni Mubarak).
The Islamic Brotherhood is becoming a leader in opposition to Hosni Mubarak, aiming for an Islamic state, but not fundamentalist to the point of making women cover up or ending peace treaties with Israel. Over the past decade, Islamic Brotherhood independents have won positions in parliament, but they’re aiming for more in these reforms.
Hossam Badrawi is new Egyptian Secretary General
Hossam Badrawi is viewed as a main part of the liberal party in Egypt. He has been appointed as head of the Steering Committee of the General Secretariat because of his democratic views. This committee makes the most important policies for the country. There are talks of, in reconstruction, Badrawi dissolving the committee and creating a whole new government structure rather than add new systems. The protesters are becoming increasingly happier with the reform happening now.
Now this is the question: will the transitional power lay with the military as Obama’s plan suggested? Or will the reform strictly be up to the replacements of the ruling party while they themselves have all the power?
Today, recently, Hosni Mubarak, as well as his ruling party, stepped down and were replaced. The Steering Committee of the General Secretariat’s members also stepped down; this committee was in charge of many of the policies and economic decisions of Egypt. The protesters continue to demonstrate their frustration, however. They have not won yet in their eyes, and according to a protester interviewed by Yahoo! News, they are simply winning “inch by inch.”
Those who replaced the ruling party were mostly object to the policies under Hosni’s 30-year regime, but if actions are carried out wrong then an implosion on Egypt’s structure is very possible. Vice President Omar Suleiman also promises Gamal Mubarak, Hosni’s son, will not run for election in September either.
More updates on the way regarding how this all could affect the U.S. and what’s going on in Egypt.
Mohamed ElBaradei syas U.S. Proposed Plan is Too Rushed
The U.S. proposed plan is very well-standing with Mohamed ElBaradei, but he also suggests the details move too swiftly. The details provide the transitional government 5 months to amend the constitution of Egypt. ElBaradei suggests at least a year is needed to show that the regime is serious about democratic reform. He also justifies the time limit by saying that a longer time is needed so that the ruling party (Mubarak’s party) can loosen up and fade out of Egyptian politics. Revolutions take time, even in reconstruction, to be successful on behalf of the people. Otherwise the same problems recur or, as a worry from before, a radical person or a radical group could come out of the grassroots and become just as autocratic to the people or hurtful to the U.S. and Israel.
Updated U.S. Plan for Egypt’s Reform
- Caption: An anti-government protester celebrates - Yahoo! News
Protesters became increasingly happy today and began celebrating. The peace has been almost fully restored; Mubarak supporters tried to come with rocks again but they were fought off. Anti-government protesters feel strong, un-intimidated, and satisfied if all goes well with the Obama Administration’s plan for reform in Egypt.
A possible plan before was to cede power to the vice president, but protesters were very displeased with that idea. A new updated plan is to have Mubarak resign almost immediately and give government power to the military as purely transitional while a new government and system is formed.
This seems ideal to protesters, as it removes Mubarak’s corruption, oppression, and paid thugs entirely. It also gives the power to the institution who has shown the most restraint dealing with the crisis; its actions have prevented an outbreak of civil war and, as of recently, stopped violence and protected citizens (if you remember from before, they were idle when violence was at its peak because they were given no orders to stop it). People need to know that that wasn’t the military’s job, it was the police’s, and they, allegedly, became paid thugs for Mubarak. Again, that’s still unconfirmed.
- Caption: Egyptian Army soldiers secure roads - Yahoo! News
The military’s neutrality proves it to be the commonsensical institution to put transitional power in the hands of. The Egyptians generally agree and the day today has been that of celebration.
The day is known as The Day of Leaving.