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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.