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13 February 2011


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William R. Cumming

Insightful comments. Taking as my reference point PL's conclusion that "JUNTA" is the correct term for the leadership situation I have concluded that Egypt has really been largely a dictatorship since 1952 and still is and will remain so unless something else happens. That something else is the policy towards Egypt adopted by the EU and USA. Assuming I am correct that indefinite delay of elections will occur, certainly there will be none by September and not open and fair elections, then probably not this entire year or even next.
Why! In general after a lifetime of study I have concluded that the aphoris "power is taken, never given" is the fundamental lesson of human history. I wish it were otherwise but have concluded it is not.
But assuming that fundamental change is afoot in the ME, which I doubt, then the US could be of assistance in many ways. But it must be generous. It must allow the JUNTA to be assured that it will not be subject to great power threats or pressures and thus the claim that it needs to lead Egypt in a dangerous world is minimized. Oddly I think that Egypt for many reasons is the least threatened of any of the ME nation-states but perhaps wrong in concluding that. I do predict that the Royal Families will not outlast this decade. Perhaps wrong their also. Time will tell.

Thanks Yusuf for the fine post.

Patrick Lang


The Junta dismissed the parliament and suspended the constitution today. They promise elections in something like six months. They are now clearing Tahrir Square with troops. They do not seem to have cancelled the Emergency Laws. Have they? From their point of view they should. They are not bound by anything but their own decisions so why do they need them? pl

William R. Cumming

PL as you long ago concluded they are an incompetent military. There are many reasons military juntas collapse but perhaps the fact that the modern world and its economics and politics is so very very complicated is one of the reasons. If you have spent your life mastering organized violence does not make you expert on other disciplines. And not of course concluding as some do that MILITARY INTELLIGENCE is an oxymoron!


Thank you very much for the post Yusuf.

It sounds to me that Islam is no more democratic than the Catholic Church. The MB is not "automatically" in favour of democracy per se, is it?


The only thing I've read concerning the police is a line in another article that said the junta declared the people need to respect the police. This is a mistake in that the police are considered the enemies of the people, a direct extension of Mubaracks oppression. I doubt if the people will be able to forgive the police for the beatings and killings they administered over the past few weeks. If the police remain intact it will be as if nothing changed.

Sorry to hear about your fire. It sounds like no one was injured. Thank God. Looking forward to your return.


Excellent Report Yusuf..Good read..One cannotm determine Stability during an "Earthquake" and Aftershocks.

Charles I

Maybe history and the youth, and those encouraged, and that huge young military conscript cohort, and anyone with a cell phone have moved, however far, past both Mubarak and the MB.

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