Sunday, February 13, 2011

FROZEN REVOLUTION EGYPT 2011? A Russian proverb is NEVER CALL FOR A NEW CZAR... The implication is the new one may be worse than the old. As Egyptians supreme leader Mubarak is involuntarily exchanged for Omar Suleiman as the new strong man, the wisdom in Russian folk philosophy is apparent.

Suleiman has a reputation of being Murbarak's hatchet man. He was up to his elbows historically in bloody suppression of dissidence, torture and corruption. He is now the unelected vice president of Egypt, recently selected by Murbarak as the political noose tightened, forcing him to abdicate his office. Note that I said OFFICE, but not power.

As long as a dictator remains in country alive, power remains with him unless he he held , isolated, incommunicado. Last news from Murbarak is that he sojourning in the sybaritic Egyptian ocean resort Sharam el -Shiekh. He can still issue commands and formulate policy. Doubt Suleiman or the Egyptian Army would hesitate to obey him even now..

Murbarak's legal position internally in the Egyptian government is meaningless when matched against 30 years of loyalty by his followers, many of which a few days ago are promised a 15 percent raise this April.

According to WikiLeaks cables, Suleiman was the favorite of Israeli government that depended on him to keep Hamas bottled up on its western Gaza borders while the Israeli starved and slaughtered Palestinians from the eastern borders of Gaza. So celebrations over the the resignation over Murbarak by the people of Gaza may be premature--the first peep out of the new Egyptian regime was that it will honor the Israeli/Egyptian peace treaty. It was almost if the revolution was all about Israel.

The Egyptian Army remains loyal to Mubarak as it attempts to administer the country through military counsels; it has disbanded parliament, while at the same time it refuses to circumvent the existing government.

The Army has been involved in Egyptian politics since Nasser in 1952. Except for killing Sadat over the Israeli/Egyptian peace treaty, it has been a source of stability.. Make no mistake this Army military role is subordinate to its political and economic interests. Call Egypt an Army with a country!

It is reported that the army generals control 30-40 percent of the Egyptian GNP- They are involved in most industries and enterprises. many times as partial owners, hidden from public view. Except for street vendors, their presence is everywhere in commercial ventures to include even hotels..Without a general officer's intervention, it is almost impossible to proceed in business ventures.

Realistically as the army now fuctions as the agency to transfer power to civilian democratic institutions, it is preposterous that it will surrender its political and economic power without pressure from the opposition.

Despite the hoopla, the revolution is frozen as the army and Suleiman restore stability with the fewest possible changes. If they have a road to to democracy, it will be the world's longest road.

Egyptian glory lies in its Pharisaic past.; pyramids, the Sphinx and the palaces of the Pharaohs were built with slave labor--It is 7000 years of history that has not provided fertile soil for democracy to develop in the western sense, so keep the expectation low for its eventual growth.

Too bad there is no Cleopatra to restore order. At least she had her charms and a sense of duty. At the same time Barack Obama and Netanyahu are not Mark Anthony or Julius Caesar by a long shot,so even her beauty would be wasted on these two blind men.--Colonel Robert E Bartos USA Ret


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