Friday, February 4, 2011

Egypt on the Brink

This is like watching a slow motion train wreck. You know it is going to be bad but you can't stop it.

I'm so frustrated because the one man who could have stopped it -- Barack Obama -- refused to do anything. He has sold out democracy in Egypt for America's "security concerns". It is the same old story. Support any thuggish dictator over any democrat because you can buy off the corrupt but you can't trust a local nationalist democrat because he is just too likely to want to do something for his people and not be bribed to do America's bidding.

The fact that on Thursday the Egyptian secret police attacked journalists, detained them, and seized equipment is a sure sign that something bad will happen on Friday. They don't want the world to see it. Out of one side of his mouth Mubarak has assured Obama that he will be "restrained" but in reality he won't. He is not going to go easily.

From Al Jazeera, there are signs of the coming crackdown:
10:09am: Our correspondent at Tahrir Square says soldiers are preventing people from getting into Tahrir Square from at least one of the entry points.

10:01am: More from our web producer in Cairo: "About 65 soldiers stationed around 6th of October bridge and the museum, wearing riot gear. Limiting access to Corniche, etc."
I agree with the analysis that say Mubarak will attempt to do the same thing Ahmadinejad did to suppress the Green Revolution. He will turn to violence to squash them. The silly kabuki dance of the last 36 hours has been the set-up to the unleashing the repression on this key day when the opposition wants to do a make-or-break demonstration. Mubarak clearly wants to bring enough violence to break the demonstrations. And it is pretty clear that he will use the military as part of the repression.

From the UK's Guardian newspaper:
7.41am: The Guardian's Harriet Sherwood reports:
The demonstration in Alexandria, Egypt's second city, is expected to be very big today, surpassing the 100,000-plus who came out on to the streets on Tuesday.

There have been signs that the Muslim Brotherhood, which has a strong presence in the city, has been organising for today's protest. A vehicle with speakers has been exhorting people to make a stand, and anti-regime activists have been visiting the mosques calling on people to join the protest.

"Tomorrow will be big," said Ahmed Mohammed, 27, a government employee who was protesting yesterday. "We have demands. They are old demands, but nobody listened until now."
From the Huffington Post you get the story of one high level American journalist being bullied by Mubarak's security forces including the Army. Funny how Obama's administration keeps assuring people that they have "good working relations with the army". They don't. The Army is loyal to Mubarak and you can see in the following that Lara Logan sees what's coming:
CBS News chief foreign affairs correspondent Lara Logan has been detained, along with her crew, by Egyptian police, TIME reported Thursday afternoon.

Logan, who has been in Egypt since Monday, had been reporting from Alexandria but was detained outside the Israeli embassy in Cairo, according to TIME.

Wednesday, Logan filed a foreboding report about the Mubarak government "throttling" foreign press.

"The army just shifted dramatically to a much more aggressive posture," she said Wednesday, one day before her detention. "And they have absolutely prevented us from filming anywhere today...And in fact when our crew went out to film beauty shots early this morning, with no idea that the situation was now different, they were confronted by soldiers and plainclothes agents. They were armed, they were intimidated and bullied and in fact marched at gunpoint through the streets all the way back to our hotel."

Logan described it as "a very frightening experience and one that was repeated throughout the day for us."
Suppressing journalist doesn't fit the storyline that Obama has been spreading. The fact that the Army is collaborating with Mubarak's police doesn't fit the storyline spread by Obama that the Army will not hurt the Egyptian people. The reason why Mubarak is suppressing the journalists is to ensure that the outside world doesn't see the blood flowing.

No comments: