Friday, February 4, 2011

Mubarak 1 Egyptians 0

Looks like Mubarak has pulled it off.

He made peace with the USA by promising to fake some reforms, including not running his son for president this fall.  This will "avoid chaos" and with US help, ensure that it will be more of the same shit, just in a different pile. America has been investing heavily in Egypt for years as their ally in the war on terror (read war on Middle East Arabs and Persians who have oil).  Billions of dollars in "foreign aid" have gone to Mubarak who in return sent it back to the USA for military hardware.

Mubarak made peace with the armed forces senior people by making former general Suleiman VP and Shafiq, former head of the Air Force, as the Prime Minister.  Part of Suleiman's previous job of head of security was to make sure the officers were loyal to Mubarak.

That leaves only the Egyptian people who don't count anyhow. If they can keep a lid on violence, the people will eventually have to go home.  The police and thugs were sent home after Wednesday's fiasco. The troops are slowly building up but keeping on the good side of the crowd. With foreign journalists banned from the square where all the action is, there may be a danger of another Tienanmen Square, though I would hope not. The "official" Egyptian health department figures for dead and wounded are laughable but like China in 1989, those will be the numbers that stick in the system because no one can change them unless the system changes.

The brightest light from a western perspective is Mohamed ElBaradei who would be quite capable of heading an interim government.  But the Americans (Republicans certainly) hate him because he was right about Iraq and they didn't listen. Don't look for an intelligent transition.

So nothing changes and the pressure will continue to build. Like the Bourbons and the Romanovs, who avoided introducing gradual change, when the lid finally blows, even though initially it may look like a democracy, when it is all over the only people left standing are the Robespierres and the Lenins. Or if you are lucky, the Castro's, Koumeni's and Chavez's.  The longer any country puts off true democracy the more likelihood of the extremists taking over.  Don't want the Muslim Brotherhood? Best make true reforms not just window dressing, even if the final results are the people's choice and not yours

The wild card is the younger officers.  Since only the army can force Mubarak from power, if the younger officers, those in charge of the tanks and soldiers on site, side with the people, then it is game over for Mubarak. We can only hope.

This thing took me over two hours to write with interruptions. By the time it is published, it may be out of date. Things are moving fast and slow at the same time.

2 comments:

  1. I agree with much of what you say. The longer this drags on with Mubarak and his handpicked V.P. and P.M. in charge, the greater the possibility either they will manage to retain power or that radical Islamists or some strongman military clone of Mubarak will end up in control.

    I think Obama is doing about all he can do in trying to persuade Mubarak to step down and get out of the way. The most worrisome development from this quarter is some noise being made to the effect that Sulieman should take over. I assume that's the reactionary idiocy of our neocon crackpot crusaders.

    I wonder if Mubarak could be persuaded to step down if some figurehead ceremonial post — president emeritus, or something — could be created for him, so he would not be in the position of being hounded out of office in humiliation. One can argue he doesn't deserve such kid-gloves treatment, but the reward for pragmatism could be a relatively bloodless transition to whatever the Egyptian people want for themselves.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Here is another site I found after posting this.
    http://www.theglobalist.com/StoryId.aspx?StoryId=8972
    Food for thought. It is a long way from popular uprising to stable democracy

    ReplyDelete