Thursday, February 03, 2011

Mubarak Plays his Last Card: the Threat of Civil War

Mubarak is fed up.

That is one human emotion that he shares with the democracy protesters in Tahrir/Liberation Square in Cairo and across Egypt. They too are fed up. Fed up with him and his regime. Their inalienable objective is to wave goodbye to his helicopter. They have no choice.

So Mubarak plays his last card. "If I go now, Egypt will be plunged into chaos and civil war",

The question is - Does the unrest last longer if he stays of if he goes?

If he goes, the demonstrators will leave Tahrir Square, go home for a shower, meal and long sleep, then start organising for the elections, whether they be in September or earlier, having successfully demonstrated the essential workings of real raw democracy. They can work intensively, and with utmost determination, to organise secular, rational, political parties, to create a new democratic Government in September or earlier.

They will draw up plans for addressing unemployment, poverty and the many other real problems that the country faces.

Already one party addresses the water crisis - a core green issue.

Egypt can go on to have a fair election, in which the Muslim Brotherhood will doubtless get a bit more than the 20% of the seats, as they do at present. Why will they not dominate? Because the heart of the Egyptian Revolution of 2011 was Youth, not Religion.

If Mubarak goes today, the Egyptian people can re-open their shops and factories tomorrow.

And if he does not go?

If he stays, the present position continues. The pro-democracy protesters will continue, they will organise and defend themselves from attack. In the absence of Army action, the thugs will escalate the violence. Already more have died in Egypt than died after the tragically suppressed Green Revolution in Iran 2008-9, when there were 72 deaths on the streets, which were vigorously condemned by our Governments.

If he stays, his goons will come and get the protesters, imprison, torture and disappear them.
He will manipulate the negotiations.
He will perpetuate his regime.

The dreadful scenario of civil war has been raised. It is much more likely to occur if Mubarak stays.

If he goes, the thugs will go. They are bullies, and bullies are strong when they feel they can get away with what they are doing. At present they are probably acting under orders from, but not attributable to, Mubarak's NDP party. Once the party is decapitated, and their pay dries up, the thugs will melt away.

Those are the options. Of course, the reality that unfolds will not be as simple as that, and nobody knows the final outcome. It could go bad. Nobody knows. But we do know this: that we face a choice between democracy and dictatorship, only a fool would choose dictatorship.


weggis said...

There are plenty fools here in the UK...and we are no different to anywhere else!

DocRichard said...


Don't you love to hear people saying "Course, the Egyptians aren't ready for democracy yet."