Mubarak Clings to Power, But for How Long?

At Least 150 Dead in Egypt as US Plans Evacuations

by Jason Ditz, Antiwar.com,  January 30, 2011

Mass censorship, mass arrests, over 150 people dead and several thousand wounded. Egypt is in full-on revolt right now, and tens of thousands of protesters continue to insist on the ouster of dictator Hosni Mubarak.

The Obama Administration, which is still holding on to hopes that Mubarak can crush the protests and retain power, is now starting to come to grips with the reality that it might not happen, and preparing the mass evacuation of US citizens from the nation in chartered planes. Officials say it will likely take several days to do so.

Meanwhile Mubarak is clinging to power, however tenuously, and the military’s simultaneous reluctance to come out completely against him or turn their guns on the protesters the way the police were continues to leave considerable doubt where the situation is going to end.

The Egyptian government’s previous decision to shrug off the protests, however, and to insist that Egypt is “not Tunisia” does not seem to have paid off for them, and now other dictators across the region are insisting that they are “not Tunisia or Egypt.” And that may be the real question here – how many of these nations will also find out that they are wrong, and that wherever they are situated, nations with crumbling economies and little personal freedom can’t count on their public remaining silent forever.

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