11 February 2011

Egypt, Friday

Not sure how much I'll be posting today -- I'll be glued to the news from Egypt, where today is already seeing the biggest and most determined protests yet. There are live blogs at The Telegraph, The Guardian, and Al-Jazeera. Within the military, there seems to be a generational split, with older officers inclining to Mubarak and younger ones to the uprising.

Across the Arabic-speaking world, people are looking to Egypt for inspiration, while rulers watch in fear. Even in some non-Arab countries, the shock waves are being felt; the Iranian theocracy is trying to block news of Egypt from reaching its people, as is the Chinese regime, which has reason to be nervous.

The Egyptians are not backing down. Vast crowds are jamming streets and squares in a dozen cities, and the Presidential Palace itself is under siege. Rumors abound that Mubarak has fled Cairo. Like the hundreds of millions in the Middle East, I, too, watch with enormous hope.

5:20 Egypt time: Tanks around the Presidential Palace turn their gun turrets away from the crowds.

6:01: Suleiman says Mubarak has left!


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