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New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by GreenGoo » Sun Feb 06, 2011 2:42 pm

Holman wrote:When the dust settles, I wouldn't be surprised to see Obama planning a visit for a sequel to his 2009 Cairo address to the Muslim world. Play that card right, and this could be a decent new beginning for U.S. interests in the region.
Dude, it will just be another misstep as he continues to fuck up of the ENTIRE world. He's the father of all lies!

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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by LawBeefaroni » Thu Feb 10, 2011 2:02 pm

Mubarak holding a press conference today (in a few hours?), this after the armed forces made a statement that they would defend the will of the people of Egypt.

He may be resigning.
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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by El Guapo » Thu Feb 10, 2011 3:18 pm

It's sounding an awful lot like the military plans to take power, at least temporarily:
Gen. Hassan al-Roueini, military commander for the Cairo area, also appeared in Tahrir Square and told the demonstrators, “All your demands will be met today.” Some in the crowd held up their hands in V-for-victory signs, shouting “the people want the end of the regime” and “Allahu akbar,” or “God is great,” a victory cry used by secular and religious people alike.

The moves marked a decisive turn in an uprising that has brought hundreds of thousands into the streets in the most sweeping revolt in the country’s history. So far, the military has stayed largely on the sidelines, but Thursday’s statement suggested it worried that the country was sliding into chaos. The military called the communiqué on state TV “the first statement of the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces,” strongly suggestive that it had arranged to take power in Egypt.

The statement, read by a spokesman, said that the council was in permanent session to explore “what measures and arrangements could be made to safeguard the nation, its achievements and the ambitions of its great people.”

Wael Ghonim, a Google executive and protest organizer whose anti-torture Facebook page helped spark the movement, wrote on his Twitter feed Thursday evening: “Mission accomplished. Thanks to all the brave young Egyptians.”
From the NY Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/02/11/world ... pt.html?hp" target="_blank. Boldening mine.

Interesting. Would force Mubarak from power (though his VP, who has a military background, could stay on). Creates the possiblity of a democratic transition....but once militaries take power, they tend to be reluctant to give it away.

I dunno. From this it sounds like the most likely possibility is a change in faces but not of substance - a new military government.

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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by LawBeefaroni » Thu Feb 10, 2011 4:34 pm

NPR (at least my station) has the BBC live in Cairo. Apparently he's already 30 minutes late.

Suleiman is the VP who was just recently given the job, coming straight from the armed forces.
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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by AWS260 » Thu Feb 10, 2011 4:42 pm

Still waiting on Mubarak.

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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by LawBeefaroni » Thu Feb 10, 2011 4:48 pm

He's on the mic now.


Wishy washy so far, not committing to resign, calling for accountability, just called himself "The President of the Republic..."

Might not resign.
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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by LawBeefaroni » Thu Feb 10, 2011 4:51 pm

Just committed to step down if not elected in September.

Uh oh.
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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by AWS260 » Thu Feb 10, 2011 4:51 pm

Yeah, definitely not sounding like he's stepping down.
Just committed to step down if not elected in September.
I thought he said that he was committed to not running in September. Might be a case of an unclear translation (I'm watching Al Jazeera English).

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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by LawBeefaroni » Thu Feb 10, 2011 4:54 pm

Have a ticker open in another window, DOW jumped down ~30 points when he said that.



Anyway, this is the same thing he said before this all started. I don't think it is going to work.

He's promising inquiries into the deaths of protestors, etc. The usual BS.
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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by LawBeefaroni » Thu Feb 10, 2011 4:55 pm

AWS260 wrote: I thought he said that he was committed to not running in September. Might be a case of an unclear translation (I'm watching Al Jazeera English).
BBC translation here and possibly my paraphrasing. Either way, it's what he was promising earlier.
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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by AWS260 » Thu Feb 10, 2011 4:59 pm

Al Jazeera is simultaneously showing the crowd chanting in Tahrir Square. They've clearly stopped listening to him.

Summary from the NYT live blog:
Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak just said in a televised address to his nation that he intends to remain in office until a new president is elected in September.

When he promised to oversee a peaceful transition of power until September, crowds of protesters erupted in unhappiness if Cairo's Tahrir Square. As he continued to speak, the protesters in Tahrir Square broke into loud chants of: "Leave! Leave! Leave!"

Mr. Mubarak, who said that he would not "listen to diktats coming from abroad," also refused to immediately lift the emergency law that has been in continuous effect since 1981, promising only to clear the way for ending the state of emergency once stability and security is restored.

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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by Isgrimnur » Thu Feb 10, 2011 5:05 pm

Bloomberg
Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak will hand over authority to Vice-President Omar Suleiman and announce five constitutional amendments, according to Dubai- based Al Arabiya TV.
...
The handover to the vice president will be in line with the constitution, according to Mubarak, Al Arabiya reported. He will confirm that he won't run for a second term and that he will pave the way for holding clean elections, Al Arabiya said.

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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by LawBeefaroni » Thu Feb 10, 2011 5:08 pm

Isgrimnur wrote:Bloomberg
Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak will hand over authority to Vice-President Omar Suleiman and announce five constitutional amendments, according to Dubai- based Al Arabiya TV.
...
The handover to the vice president will be in line with the constitution, according to Mubarak, Al Arabiya reported. He will confirm that he won't run for a second term and that he will pave the way for holding clean elections, Al Arabiya said.
According to a story time stamped before his speech.
Bloomberg wrote:By Nayla Razzouk - Feb 10, 2011 2:30 PM CT
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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by El Guapo » Thu Feb 10, 2011 5:10 pm

Yeah, NY Times has the "breaking news" that he's "clinging to office" and that the crowds are "furious." He's almost taunting them now - I can't see him lasting for six months unless the military strongly backs him, and it doesn't seem like they're inclined to do that.

I wonder what happens with the military's semi-veiled promises / threats, though.

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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by LawBeefaroni » Thu Feb 10, 2011 5:17 pm

El Guapo wrote: He's almost taunting them now - I can't see him lasting for six months unless the military strongly backs him, and it doesn't seem like they're inclined to do that.
His speech was totally condescending. "I know what it was like to be a crazy youth..."

I watched the American Experience on Nixon over the weekend. While it's a much different situation, Mubarak's apparent ignorance of reality is similar.
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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by El Guapo » Thu Feb 10, 2011 5:19 pm

I'm just confused - why give this speech if it doesn't seem like anything of substance is changing? Sounds like he just got people's hopes up and then basically spit in their eyes. That's just going to strengthen their resolve.

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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by Arcanis » Thu Feb 10, 2011 5:20 pm

Someone rescue the major historical monuments, because these people are about to go ape shit like never before.
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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by LawBeefaroni » Thu Feb 10, 2011 5:24 pm

El Guapo wrote:I'm just confused - why give this speech if it doesn't seem like anything of substance is changing? Sounds like he just got people's hopes up and then basically spit in their eyes. That's just going to strengthen their resolve.
He made some very small concessions and tried to drop some additional bones ("we will set up an inquiry into kilings", "there will be a commission to review the constitution"). He may really be that out of touch and thought he could talk everyone down. He did use a lot of nationalist and historical imagery. He even likened himself to the father of Egypt.
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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by Smoove_B » Thu Feb 10, 2011 5:27 pm

Arcanis wrote:Someone rescue the major historical monuments, because these people are about to go ape shit like never before.
Some in the crowd at Tahrir Square warned that turning over power to Suleiman would not appease demonstrators, unless the vice president promised to step down after elections are held. "If he takes over, that will be a big issue," said lawyer Marwan Alashaal, 32. "This city is going to be swimming in blood."

If Mubarak did not step down, Alashaal added, demonstrators would march toward the presidential palace Friday. "We will destroy it completely and clash with the presidential forces," he said.
You're not kidding.

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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by LawBeefaroni » Thu Feb 10, 2011 5:27 pm

Enlarge Image
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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by Isgrimnur » Thu Feb 10, 2011 5:28 pm

Arcanis wrote:Someone rescue the major historical monuments, because these people are about to go ape shit like never before.
Quick, call Carmen Sandiego!

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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by El Guapo » Thu Feb 10, 2011 5:45 pm

I almost wonder if he's hoping to spark massive riots that would justify a massive crackdown.

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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by Smoove_B » Thu Feb 10, 2011 5:48 pm

I'm pretty sure if he opens fire on the Egyptian citizens there, our CIA sleepers and embedded special forces are going to unleash trouble. Unlike Saddam's attack against the Kurds in 1988, today the world is watching in real time.

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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by LawBeefaroni » Thu Feb 10, 2011 5:53 pm

Smoove_B wrote:I'm pretty sure if he opens fire on the Egyptian citizens there, our CIA sleepers and embedded special forces are going to unleash trouble. Unlike Saddam's attack against the Kurds in 1988, today the world is watching in real time.
Saudi Arabia, UAE, Jordan and the rest of our Middle East allies are watching too. They are likely relieved with Mubarak's decision today.

This one has to be all on the Egyptians.
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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by AWS260 » Thu Feb 10, 2011 6:11 pm

74-year-old man to young people: "Get off my lawn."
Egypt's vice president, Omar Suleiman, speaking on state television minutes ago, called on protesters to end their demonstrations and stop listening to foreign media reports on the unrest in the country. "Young people of Egypt and its heroes, go back home and to work," he said.

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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by stessier » Thu Feb 10, 2011 6:38 pm

I heard that last bit about "stop listening to satellite tv" while driving in the car. My first thought was - oh sure, that'll work.

This is not going to end well.
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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by GreenGoo » Thu Feb 10, 2011 7:41 pm

Fuckin' media. Root of all woe.

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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by El Guapo » Fri Feb 11, 2011 10:42 am

There are apparently more, but inconsistent, signals that Mubarak is leaving:
CAIRO —The Egyptian military appeared to assert its leadership Friday amid growing indications that President Hosni Mubarak was yielding all power. A Western official said that Mr. Mubarak had left the capital, though that could not be independently confirmed.

The Associated Press, citing a local official, said that Mr. Mubarak had flown to the Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheik, about 250 miles from Cairo, where he maintains a residence.

Angry protesters, who had swarmed by the thousands into the streets here Friday morning, were hardly mollified by the news of Mr. Mubarak’s exit and an accompanying statement by the Supreme Council of the Egyptian Armed Forces over state television and radio indicating that the military, not Mr. Mubarak, was in effective control of the country. They said they would not believe he was gone until he had formally relinquished his title as president, and until his handpicked successor, Vice President Omar Suleiman, had been ousted as well.

It was unclear whether the military would take meaningful steps toward democracy or embark on a new military dictatorship. Many protesters were calling for the ouster of Mr. Mubarak’s Western diplomats said that officials of the Egyptian government were scrambling to assure that a muddled speech Mr. Mubarak made on Thursday night that enraged protesters had in fact signaled his irrevocable hand over of presidential authority.

“The government of Egypt says absolutely, it is done, it is over,” a Western diplomat said, suggesting that the Egyptian military and government officials had expected Mr. Mubarak to make his exit clear last night, but that the president failed to deliver those lines. “That is not what anybody heard.”
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/02/12/world ... ml?_r=1&hp" target="_blank

He hasn't actually stepped down, however. It sounds like the military is pushing him out, but that he's pridefully attempting to cling to what he can.

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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by hepcat » Fri Feb 11, 2011 10:44 am

Wasn't sure if this has been brought up, but I wonder if there's reasonable doubt as to the majority wanting his ouster. From all I've read, he's been holding onto power in a way that screams "dictator", but I have to wonder if what we're seeing is just the vocal protestors. Filling a square with thousands of people looks impressive, and to someone from abroad watching it unfold in the media, certainly appears to be a majority of the population. But in a country with a population of around 80 million, even 80 thousand isn't an overwhelming majority.
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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by El Guapo » Fri Feb 11, 2011 10:58 am

No, there's really no reasonable doubt on that. You can see this in part from the total lack of pro-Mubarak action on the streets (aside from the violence of a week or so ago, and there's pretty good evidence that that was thugs paid by the regime). It's not *impossible* that there are tens of millions of pro-Mubarak supporters sitting at home...but that doesn't seem at all likely.

Also - it's all but impossible to be a dictator for more than 5, 10 years and have majority support from the population. Since the job description is essentially repression, violence, and corruption, that tends not to translate into being the life of the party.

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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by $iljanus » Fri Feb 11, 2011 11:01 am

hepcat wrote:Wasn't sure if this has been brought up, but I wonder if there's reasonable doubt as to the majority wanting his ouster. From all I've read, he's been holding onto power in a way that screams "dictator", but I have to wonder if what we're seeing is just the vocal protestors. Filling a square with thousands of people looks impressive, and to someone from abroad watching it unfold in the media, certainly appears to be a majority of the population. But in a country with a population of around 80 million, even 80 thousand isn't an overwhelming majority.

There also have been nationwide strikes in addition to smaller protests in other cities so I think there's alot of support for his ouster. 30 years of rule by brutal secret police probably has kept folks at home out of fear but still hoping for Mubarak's ouster.

Of course if Egypt decends into anarchy after Mubarak leaves, I'm sure there's going to be a segment of folks wishing for the "good ole bad old days".
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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by Odin » Fri Feb 11, 2011 12:20 pm

Annnnd.... he's gone.

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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by coopasonic » Fri Feb 11, 2011 12:27 pm

Odin wrote:Annnnd.... he's gone.
The Article wrote:Suleiman said the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces will "run the affairs of the country."
...
Tens of thousands of anti-government protesters exploded in cheers on the streets of Cairo after the announcement.

"Egypt is Free!" they chanted.
"The Military is in charge" and "Egypt is free" do not seem to be statements that reconcile.
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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by Odin » Fri Feb 11, 2011 12:32 pm

coopasonic wrote:"The Military is in charge" and "Egypt is free" do not seem to be statements that reconcile.
They don't seem to, no. Whether they end up doing so will depend entirely on how the military proceeds. Up until this point (and I'm referring specifically to the recent period of civil unrest, not the last 30 years), they seem to me (from my chair here in NY) like they (the Egyptian military) have been behaving pretty respectably for a force that's been working under a dictatorship for longer than most of its members have been alive.

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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by Enough » Fri Feb 11, 2011 12:49 pm

I started this thread on Jan. 25th and he is already gone. This has been really amazing to watch.
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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by tgb » Fri Feb 11, 2011 12:50 pm

Turning control of a country over to the military rarely, if ever, ends well.
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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by LawBeefaroni » Fri Feb 11, 2011 12:53 pm

tgb wrote:Turning control of a country over to the military rarely, if ever, ends well.
We fund them and train them. Now the US might have a say in this.

Just catching up, I was in a meeting. Still paralleling Nixon in a weird, alternative universe kind of way.
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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by Enough » Fri Feb 11, 2011 1:01 pm

LawBeefaroni wrote:
tgb wrote:Turning control of a country over to the military rarely, if ever, ends well.

Just catching up, I was in a meeting. Still paralleling Nixon in a weird, alternative universe kind of way.
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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by Odin » Fri Feb 11, 2011 2:38 pm

tgb wrote:Turning control of a country over to the military rarely, if ever, ends well.
Certainly can't argue with that. I'm still holding out hope that Egypt can end up with a populist government, though I suppose the chances of a mid-east populist government that ISN'T radically Islamic and hostile to the US would probably be too much to ask.

While I'm hoping for stuff, I might as well tack on the desire to see this unrest spill over into Libya and knock old Uncle Moammar out of power as well.

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Re: New Egyptian Unrest: Tunisia Part II?

Post by Vorret » Fri Feb 11, 2011 2:43 pm

I'm surprised how fast everything unfolded....
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