U.S. in Talks with Mubarak about Immediate Resign
Friday, February 4th, 2011, anti-government protesters turned out peacefully in Cairo again at an estimated quarter of a million people. They demand that today be the day Hosni Mubarak resigns. The Obama Administration says they are in talks with Mubarak about such things happening; they don’t trust his humanitarian record either. One suggested plan is to resign and leave power for reform with his vice president. The people are not happy with that option, and more will be done in talks to negotiate.
For now, however, most of the protests are peaceful again and they are larger than ever before, not phased by the one and a half days of pure violence and destruction.
Caption: An Egyptian anti-government protester stopping for Friday prayer in front of tanks lining core protest areas.
“I Will Not Step Down, Otherwise There Will Be Chaos,” says Hosni Mubarak
As opposed to the chaos now? President Hosni Mubarak refuses to resign early because he is worried about the state of his country. That being said, the anti-government protesters do not trust him to leave office when the end of his term comes. They say he will simply say, “Well look at the turmoil! You all need me! I’m staying.” The protesters also say that he payed thugs to start the violence of yesterday and the night before to show that statement. That notion is still unconfirmed.
Fortunately, ever since the military intervened yesterday, the protests have been mostly peaceful (notice the word mostly). The military has lined core areas with tanks and anti-government protesters have built barricades all over to ensure safety.
The biggest thing to worry about still is the worry I expressed early on in the protests: radical groups coming out of the grassroots. Even neutrality with the U.S. could mean a near-end to Israel and its people. Riots have continued and will continue consistently until they feel it’s all a success.
Military Finally Intervenes in Egypt
Molotov Cocktails and Gunfire were traded between the two protest groups all through the night. At around 11:00 A.M. in Egypt, tanks and infantry moved in between the two groups. Hundreds of soldiers with rifles moved to all of the front-lines of the groups and cleared highways from which firebombs and rocks were being launched.
The Egyptian military is finally intervening to stop the deaths (death toll is estimated at 5, with 600 injured). This has made some protesters let go of the belief that the military and its soldiers were a part of the “paid thugs” that were hired by the government or businesses affiliated with Hosni Mubarak.
All of those beliefs are still unconfirmed. The Obama Administration and David Cameron still push for Mubarak to resign quickly while establishing order in the reform; they are now backing the people of Egypt more than ever.
“Government Flights out of Egypt for Americans After Thursday are Unlikely”, says State Department
The State Department urges all foreigners to get to an airport immediately to catch government flights to anywhere from Europe to the West. They say to NOT wait for a call from the U.S. Embassy and that flights after Thursday are highly unlikely.
The evacuations are not free. The estimated cost to evacuate is at $1,700, and one must comply to pay to leave.
Molotov Cocktails at Tahrir Square along with gunfire at around 11:30pm EET (according to Yahoo! News)
Very very recently, heavy gunfire took place in Tahrir Square. Three are confirmed dead and the Minister of Health did not answer a phone call to confirm the deaths. Molotov cocktails are being thrown often tonight across the barricade the anti-government protesters set up hours ago to protect themselves.
The military has surrounded the area with tanks, but have been given no order to intervene on the violence. Many people still suggest the violence is coming directly from Hosni Mubarak’s administration.
Oil Prices going Up Due To Egyptian Crisis
The global economy is being hurt by the revolution in Egypt. As tensions in the Middle-East rise, not just Egypt, oil prices rise too. Some trading is at a halt as well. The Suez Canal is considered an Achilles-heel of the trading global market. It is as of now being choked and stops the flow of certain goods.
Many economists are worried that the rise of oil prices ($100 a barrel now) and other goods from the Middle-East will hurt bond values and continue the inflation happening right now.
Anti-Mubarak protesters are hiding behind a wall they built to protect themselves. The military of Egypt is still not intervening and the police are nowhere to be found.
Government workers say their employers ordered them to go attack and others say businesses on the side of Mubarak share responsibility for the violence of today. No doubt, if even a small part of this is true, there is huge corruption among Egypt’s government (more so than lead on). The Obama Administration said that the violence must stop immediately, especially if it is at the hands of Egyptian businesses and government.