Blogs Jan 25, 2011 at 12:57 pm


You forgot Sec. of State Clinton gave a speech recently warning the Arab dictators to embrace freedom and democracy or face overthrow. That was right before Tunisia fell apart.
What an interesting idea. Wow. Contrasts with burjalsaheb's comment Jen included below.
The thing is, Tunisia is a paper state, while Egypt receives billions of dollars of US aid, much of it military. And they have seventy years' experience dealing harshly with far more threatening people than these students. The Muslim Brotherhood, spiritual godfathers of Al Qaeda, are from Egypt.

In fact, one of the big worries with overthrowing Mubarak with "people power" is that the well-organized religious right will just coopt the revolution for their own aims, just like they did in Iran (where the mullahs were originally not part of the revolutionaries, who were Marxist).

On the other hand, there just isn't a clean way to ditch Mubarak. We're going to have to put up with instability if we want these countries to transition from the undead states they are now.

But you can expect that every Arab dictator, from Qaddafi to Assad to Aziz to Bashir, is going to have every torture cell at full occupancy tonight.
Well put Fnarf!
I have to agree with Charles, that was well put, Fnarf. The first thing that I thought when I saw this story was: 50/50 on another war with Israel. If the Muslim Brotherhood ends up in power, they'll almost have to start a war.
More information will, of course, change this theory.

Translation: If this turns out well, I will credit Obama. If this turns out poorly, I will pin it on Bush.
Here's where it's at at the close of the day:…

I have a friend doing a Study Abroad program in Cairo right now. She's doing regular updates on the situation. Very exciting!
I think you are right, Charles. The common Egyptian LOVES Obama. The common Egyptian also hates Mubarak, but until now, they hated Bush more.
It's possible Egypt could be more moderate. Then, a military coup could be next. But I don't expect moderation in many other places. I wonder what will happen to Saudi Arabia?
@8, unfortunately for the common Egyptian, Obama and Secretary of State Clinton have been strong supporters of Mubarak, as he provides "stability". It's very clear that when he spoke about "freedom" in Cairo, he didn't mean Egyptians to think he really meant it.
The EU and other nations did actually freeze the accounts for Tunisia. But they did a big red wheat deal (source: Bloomberg, WSJ)

Doubt they'll do that for Egypt, though.
Hey, could you guys post a complete list of the posts that you've written on Tunisia? I tried to use your search function (which is really terrible, but probably not your fault) and click through both the "Breaking News" and "International" tags, but I can't find that great post you had with the break-down of the events (around when the president had just stepped down). You had links to an amazing blog written by, I think, an AP reporter located in North Africa with amazing reporting and analysis.

I hope you read this comment! Thanks!
It's really sloppy of you to assume that Tunisia took the State Department by surprise. I'd expect jeering dismissal of a government agency from a Beck or Palin wannabe. I'm surprised that you'd say this without even bothering to make your case.

Barring another round of cables from wikileaks, you don't know and won't know anything about what State knew about Tunisia. Be a better writer/journalist - have somebody look over your posts before publishing for irrelevant statements with no factual basis.

Please wait...

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