Saturday, February 05, 2011

REVOLUTION AND COUNTER REVOLUTION --EGYPT 2011--The revolution in Egypt today is by no means a Velvet Revolution. You have to understand that the Egyptians are not Czechs--Rashid and Vladek live in political and cultural worlds apart; and the actions taken by these distinct people to regime change will be dramatically different..

For over a week ,the media fed the US public western style or European interpretations of the events -lots of glorious hogwash about spontaneity of democratic spirit- it even rhapsodized a so-called facebook revolution. That until the Murbarak regime got itself organized and charged Tahrir Square on camels and horses; swinging whips, it began to draw blood from the revolutionaries. The counter revolution viciously started to roll'

Journalists who apparently believed their own nonsense were swept up by the counter revolution -some beaten and many arrested. Even pretty boy CNN Anderson Cooper got smacked around. Too bad Geraldo Rivera and Dan Rather were not there to cover the storey. Would have been interesting to time how long their confrontational style would have lasted before they were stomped and bitten by a foul tempered camel.

As I watched the journalists deploy to Egypt, it dawned on me that the old days of Patty Hearst style romantic revolutionary had resurfaced. Oh well, each generation must learn. Yes ,there are crocodiles in the Nile and street thugs in Cairo will cut your throat for a shinny watch or your Gucci bag. This is even in the best of times with well fed cops on every street corner.

At this stage the revolution appears without an organized leadership cadre. There is unity in purpose to depose Mubarak immediately, but no focus on a program to replace him. Each day the revolutionaries will be forced to take more personal risks as the Mubarak counter revolutionary forces proceed. World public opinion will count for little as the revolutionaries are crushed or the old regime is remorselessly purged.

If Mubarak has a sustained power base, it is in his conscript army. His internal security apparat has all but collapsed. The pro American army's high command is loyal to Mubarak at this moment, but this loyalty is not among the rank and file. Certain elite units will fire on the revolutionaries, but most units will hesitate or desert. Remember the Egyptian Army has a worse fighting record than Italians. So in the end Mubarak's army will do everything but fight. The pretext will be to stay out of politics, but my opinion is that it lacks guts when it comes to slaughter.

What is unknown is the strength and appeal of the Muslim Brotherhood, a jihad organization. Mubarak had 30 years to bleed it, but it still survives with fanatical zeal. It is the Egyptian ruling class greatest fear as the state security organizations weaken , it will gain strength and try to take control of the opposition and the revolution.

The US fears this as well as it strongly suggests the army negotiate with secular elements of the opposition--but the US sponsorship of anything, drives the Arab street crazy. As long as Israel is tied to US purse and security apron stings, this situation will not change. Mubarak bears the same stigma--pictures of him carried during demonstrations have a star of David super imposed on them.

If the Muslim Brotherhood takes power, Hamas stock goes up and the Jewish state strategic problems turn into a nightmare. A pipeline across the Sinai carrying fuel to Israel and Jordan already blew up mysteriously.

The Suez Canal continued operation is the big casino in this chaos-Israeli security is not despite what the American Israeli lobby asserts. The US will take serious military risks to keep the Canal open. Syria, Yemen, Jordan and Algeria are now forced to take steps against Islamic forces. Watch Iraq.

As of this writing the turmoil and upheaval in Egypt has lasted nearly two weeks-The Obama administration has almost as many different positions on a daily basis on what to do, but no one in Egypt appears to listen. US intelligence appears to be caught flat footed. CIA was up to its ears with rendition in Egypt, so bad news on Egypt was probably pigeoned holed as politically incorrect.--Same old nonsense.

Once thing for certain is that this revolution is not pro democracy.--Colonol Robert E Bartos USA Ret.

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