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Changing Perspectives: Can Mubarak Hold On to Power?

— Filed under: Breaking News, Politics & Government
President George W. Bush and Egyptian Presiden...

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Many of us have spent the last couple of weeks enthralled by the events unfolding in Egypt. The developments have been coming so fast and furious that it has seemed almost impossible to write an article about it — anything I write would be out-of-date almost before it's published. That said, I have noticed an interesting change in the media narrative regarding Mubarak's outlook for survival.

In the early days of the current unrest, most of the news articles seemed to assume that regime change in Egypt was inevitable. It was really just a matter of time until Mubarak would be unseated. The most over-used word of the week was "clinging", "clung", or variations thereof. Obama and his administration felt confident enough to issue typically ambiguous (yet still crystal clear) statements that change "must begin now" and that the people had to be heard.

The writing was on the wall. Change was at hand; it was the Arab world's 1989 revolution. Israel's Haaretz newspaper went so far as to say that Obama would "go down in history as the president who lost Egypt".

Obama in Egypt, P060409PS-0223

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But then a funny thing happened on the way to revolution. Mubarak managed to stand his ground. After 30 years of "clinging" to power, he has managed to hold on for another 13 days of rioting and protest, and suddenly people have started to wonder if he might be able to hang on a bit longer. Some are now questioning whether the protestors are perhaps not representative of the Egyptian people's collective wishes, and have chided the media for not providing a fuller picture.

Suddenly revolution doesn't seem so inevitable. The ground upon which Mubarak is standing doesn't appear as shaky as it did a few days ago. The Muslim Brotherhood, after refusing to negotiate until after Mubarak had relinquished power, has now agreed to meet with Egypt's vice president.

The whole situation brings to mind the very first poll we ran on, entitled "Regime vs. Revolution". What do you think? Is Mubarak doomed, or will he successfully hold on to power? I've created a new poll specifically about Egypt; cast your vote here. And please share your thoughts by posting a comment below.

Muho's picture

I'm not so sure that it would

I'm not so sure that it would be good for Egypt if Mubarak left; I know that's what everyone wants, but who would fill the void? Then again Egypt is not going back to the way it was before

Niko's picture

No way he's going to hold on

No way he's going to hold on and not get strung up like he deserves

EgyptianConniption's picture

The protests are running out

lloydyspeaks's picture

I sincerely hope that the

I sincerely hope that the protest in Egypt will bring about the reform, democracy and higher standard of living/lower food costs etc, that some of the Egyptian people are fighting for. In this day and age certain Human Rights should be a prerequisite. Unfortunately though i do not think that this will happen unless the people negotiating on behalf of the population is actually truly on the side of the population and not a political party or agenda.

If Mubarak falls, what then? The opposition leaders stand up for election? The Army steps up until a "new" government can be implement. What about if it ends up like the Iranian Revolution from 1979? What if the Muslim Brotherhood, (who have been trying to cleanse Egypt for decades,) gain power and introduce strict Sharia Law.

I would be pretty sure to wager that the majority of Egyptians would now gladly go home, get back to work and normality, have safety and infrastructure return and look forward to September, when they will eventually get a chance to cast a vote that could quite possibly bring about a government that is the people choice.

I read a Statement on the BBC News site and it struck a chord with me. An Egyptians lady said, "How can the protesters, if they're a few thousand, or even one million, take a decision for 85 million Egyptians?"

I pray that democracy does get a chance to shine and the citizens of Egypt get a government which will work for them and will not impose, restrict, impede and suppress the people but will work towards better and fairer quality of living and a new brighter era for all Egyptians.

Fingers crossed for that one then!

Kuncen's picture

US and world 'wrong-footed' by Mubarak

According to the Guardian, Mubarak's latest speech has wrong-footed the US and the world, adding uncertainty to whether or not he'll step down:

Obama finds speech dispiriting:


Kuncen's picture

Mubarak out

Well, it's all settled now.  Mubarak has quit, and Egypt is rejoicing:

Opinion piece suggesting it's just the beginning of a long road for Egypt: