Thursday, February 3, 2011

Egypt: Second Wednesday go Thursday

It's been ugly.

Likely you've seen the reports of the pro-Mubarak protesters finally figuring out how to get at the anti-Mubarak protesters in the square... and the day-long rioting... amazingly, even after a re-count overnight, it seems only a handful actually died although there are reports from 600 to over 2,000 injured enough to need care.

I've talked about 'orchestration' in previous reports here, and usually I was implying something about the motivation or methods of the Oppos; Wednesday's mayhem in Cairo was the other kind of 'orchestration'. Some one on the Loyalist side figured out that (a) the Army isn't stopping anyone, really, and (b) both the Army and some more moderate voices in the Oppos have said it is time for the demonstrations to wind down, so some number of Oppos supporters had packed it in. That left, I'll wager they thought, rather fewer people that didn't deserve a walloping standing around the Square. Time to go crack heads, by that line of thinking. So who gave the go-ahead and who arranged the details of massing the counter-protest? Not the NDP (the political party of the regime) itself, but probably some of the Ward Bosses and their Leg-breakers who have made a pretty good trade over the years delivering elections for the NDP.

The good news, if there really is any after all that, is that even the new Prime Minister has apologized to the people and
...pledged to investigate the violence, calling it a "fatal error".
Indeed. The Army is now almost certain to side with the Oppos and fire on any Loyalist attempts at violence.


Also, just a reminder: There are several superb news feeds out of the region in English, mostly Israeli. Here's Haaretz Breaking News feed, which has been very good so far through this all.


Yesterday's News, but related: We spoke of Yemen being caught up in some of the echoes of all this, reigniting the near-perpetual anti-government protests (mostly in the South). Well, seems something came of that: President Saleh won't run for reelection in 2013, at least, so he says. A year is forever in politics in Yemen.

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