In the most repressive nations on this planet, where protests are forbidden, where free speech is not a right, people are standing against their governments.
Images and video of protests, as well as updates on the situation, are below the fold.
Current Mid-East mothership is here.
In Egypt's Southern neighbor, Sudan, a somewhat disorganized protest saw students march on four universities and the government center in Khartoum. According to the Sudan Tribune, an English language Sudanese paper, between 16,000 and 100,000 people are involved.
Democratic opposition groups in the nation are reaching out to students, and at least 40 leaders of the democratic movement were arrested by state police. Today's protests were mostly students, who marched to their Khartoum universities in groups, and planned to march from there to the capitol. Police stopped the students at the universities to prevent them from forming a larger group. Sudanese media reports that the Egyptian Student's Action Plan, leaflets providing demonstration tactics and instruct on countering tear gas, are now being distributed throughout Sudan. The Facebook page where the protests were planned promises further protest tomorrow.
Todays protests were stopped in their tracks by a huge police presence. eyewitnesses report that the police are "Rampaging." Al Jazeera reports that police have beaten and arrested students.
No videos or images of the clashes, but I did find this video of a group of students marching towards one of the Universities that was set to be a staging ground. You can hear one of the people taking the video reporting similar information on the expected numbers.
Meanwhile, sudanese media reports rebel groups in Darfur are attempting to unite in order to stop Omar Al Bashir's Genocide. They believe they may have an ally in South Sudan.
Watch Sudan. Things may begin to move very quickly there.
Al Jazeera is facing political pressure from several gulf leaders, including the King of Saud, not to report on unrest in Yemen or Saudi Arabia. There does not seem to be much Al Jazeera coverage of events in Yemen, and they have not confirmed information about the situation in Saudi Arabia.
Sultan Sooud Al Qassemi, a fellow at the Dubai School Of Government who has written articles for the Guardian, Huffington Post, and New York Times, has said that since political pressure began, coverage has been Tamed. Especially on the conservative network Al Arabia.
There are reports that there has been a demonstration in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia:
This comes a day after massive flooding. A number of Kossacks have raised questions in the comments about the economic and political situation in Saudi Arabia.
While Saudi Arabia has the same economic conditions, connectivity with the internet isn't such that the underclass is as connected to the social media which has been used to organize these protests.
Despite this fact, if Egypt becomes democratic, you'll probably see an attempt by pro democracy groups in Egypt to encourage democratic reforms across the middle east.
Back to Egypt, revolutionaries are rallying aroundEl Baradei. This man has been tear gassed, water cannoned, and has been at the front lines of the protests since revolutionaries released him from house arrest. Even the Muslim Brotherhood has thrown their full support behind El Baradei, and acknowledges him as the leader of the opposition coalition in Egypt, Al Jazeera has been reporting. This is being described as his Martin Luther King moment.
Without any security, this man is standing in Tahrir Square.
Protesters have freed political prisoners, storming at least two prisons, and bashing open the cell doors with stones according to Al Jazeera.
Meanwhile the Al Jazeera television headquarters in Cairo was shut down. Al Jazeera has moved to Tahrir Square and set up a temporary headquarters there.
Throughout the day, Egyptian Fighter Jets buzzed the city, perhaps in an attempt to show their control of the city.
@RamyRaoof is in Tahrir Square with a smart phone, and has been tweeting some incredible photos.
None of the analysts I've read today think Mubarak can hold out.
State Security has been ordered to leave Revolutionaries alone. Considering that no one has reported a State Security presence for over 24 hours, I'm not sure what good this order will do.
No one is in control of the situation. The only person who can do anything about this is Mubarak. Only then will Egypt calm. There is nothing he can do now without making an enemy of the world.
If he attempts to put down the revolution violently, the people of Europe and America will turn on him. It is likely that if he gave such an order, his own military might turn against him.
They're certainly being incredibly gentle with the people, no matter what happens.
Another image from @RamyRaoof. Arabic reads "Down with Mubarak. No to Mubarak."
Update, 2:03 PM, EST Police are now entering Tahrir square. State Security and the Military are attempting to maintain law and order in the face of looting, much of which is still purported to have been carried out by State Security themselves.
Campfires are alight in Tahrir Square.
Two updates from posters that need to be considered, Both are from Elliot.
Another IRIS analyst, Pascal Boniface, said Tunisia created a "generic model" for challenging authoritarian governments, which could be reprised "in Africa, Asia, anywhere repressive powers dominate and appear worn out".
"The African continent is at a special moment in its history, with 22 presidential and legislative elections due in the coming year," said one senior French official who asked not to be named.
"It is not a good time for dictators," he added. "This could be contagious."
Second: Syrian and Algerian democrats are planning demonstrations next month.
Update, 2:11 EST GW Bush's national security advisor says Mubarak Is Finished. Even he thinks we should support the protesters.
Al Jazeera Reporting, 2:17 EST Mubarak Spokesman: Millions of Egyptians demand Mubarak to stay.
Who does he think he's kidding?
Update, 2:45 PM, EST Whitehouse now calling for "An Orderly Transition in Egypt."
Well done, Johnny come Lately. I know we're dealing with a complex set of issues here, but the reality is that our failure to come out and support the Revolution is going to be remembered.
Granted, that would have earned us the enmity of a lot of our dictatorial allies.
Still, what we do in the next few days matters. A lot.
Update: 3:00 PM EST Al Jazeera Tweet:
Egyptian TV announcing that police will be redeployed in the streets soon, possibly as early as tomorrow.
Update: 3:05 ESTFull Text of White House statement:
On Saturday, January 29th, the President spoke to Prime Minister (Recep Tayyip) Erdogan of Turkey, Prime Minister (Benjamin) Netanyahu of Israel, and King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia. Today, he spoke to Prime Minister (David) Cameron of the United Kingdom.
During his calls, the President reiterated his focus on opposing violence and calling for restraint; supporting universal rights, including the right to peaceful assembly, association, and speech; and supporting an orderly transition to a government that is responsive to the aspirations of the Egyptian people.
The President asked each of the leaders that he spoke to for their assessment of the situation, and agreed to stay in close contact going forward.
This is a good start. Everyone pop back over to the mothership and call the white house. We need to encourage support for the Egyptian people going forward.
Update: 3:11 EST Once again, Elliot provides us something valuable.
Further proof of the gentleness of the Egyptian Military towards their own people.
Update: 3:20 EST Despite news from State media that police will return to the streets, revolutionaries are staying in Tahrir square. They are calling the announcement a "ploy" by the Mubarak regime to force them to leave the square.
3:48 PM El Baradei Forms Comitee
Sultan Qassemi Tweets:
Ayman Nour "(other members) Justice Mahmoud El Khodairi, George Ishaq, Mr Abu Al Ezz, it is a ten member committee."
2 minutes ago via web
Ayman Nour "Today was the first session of the People's Popular Parliament which includes El Baradei, Mohammed El Beltaji, myself.."
4 minutes ago via web
Ayman Nour "This govt has not communicated with the opposition party until the last minute, they will be forced to negotiate with us"
7 minutes ago via web
Ayman Nour "We are not asking for an (army) coup. We are asking the army to take the side of the people not the side of the tyrant"
9 minutes ago via web
Ayman Nour "Our key demand is for Mubarak to step down, we will negotiate with the army, we will negotiate with other opposition members"
10 minutes ago via web
Ayman Nour "We have formed an opposition committee for change that involves ten members, represented by El Baradei"
10 minutes ago via web
I am continuing to monitor the situation. I wish I could do something more than monitor, but even those who can are content to just sit back an watch. This isn't a football game.
Updates as of 5:20 EST El Baradei quoted by Christian Science Monitor:
"The American government cannot ask the Egyptian people to believe that a dictator who has been in power for 30 years would be the one to implement democracy. This is a farce," he said on CBS' Face the Nation. "The first thing which will calm the situation is for Mubarak to leave, and leave with some dignity. Otherwise, I fear that things will get bloody. And [the US] have to stop the life support to the dictator and root for the people."
Sultan Al Qassemi updates:
If the US Defense Secretary convinces the Israelis that it's safe for Mubarak to exit, he's doomed. Also must reassure Egyptians of support.
Update: 5:26 PM EST There's been a question about things manufactured in the USA.
Here's the proof.
This was on Rachel Maddow, Friday.
Update: 5:47PM Al Jazeera Tweets.
evanchill So I guess, "giddy" isn't the right word, but I share his sense of foreboding.
3 minutes ago · reply
evanchill Have to disagree with Kristof's view of Tahrir tonight. Atmosphere is tense. Army keeping people more confined. Some gunshots nearby. #jan25
4 minutes ago · reply
glcarlstrom Tense in Tahrir Square tonight. Random gunfire nearby; some people in the square are blaming the army for it, verbally confronting soldiers.
8 minutes ago · reply
AymanM #egypt remaining protesters at Tahrir Square huddle around campfires chatting and getting to know each other #jan25
59 minutes ago · reply
nolanjazeera Volleys of gunfire ringing out over #Cairo right now. Sounds like area near Interior Ministry? Another sleepless night for #Egypt
about 1 hour ago · reply
nolanjazeera Aljazeera's Cairo office was shut down by govt 8hrs ago but our coverage continues! Believe we're only network targeted so far #Egypt
Reports from Al Jazeera that there are Judges, Scholars, Students, and many others on the streets.
Update: 6:00 PM EST The Spanish newspaper RTVE.ES is not showing America in a very good light. Meanwhile, Chavez calls us out.
23:20 Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak said that subsidies keep and create jobs.
22:57 Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez demands respect for the sovereignty of Arab countries in crisis, among which he mentioned Egypt and Tunisia, to enable them to reach peaceful solutions.
"We demand respect for the sovereignty of those countries and to reach peaceful solutions, and the Arab world continue to progress without colonialism and division , because the U.S. is very good at dividing it, "Chavez said.
22:55 U.S. President, Barack Obama , concludes a round of calls to various international leaders to discuss the situation in Egypt in the wake of protests against the regime of Hosni Mubarak, said today the White House.
22:30 Defence Secretary Robert Gates speaks with his Egyptian counterpart Mohamed Hussein Tantawi , the unrest in the country. Also with Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak.
Update: 6:10 PM EST Egyptian Revolutionaries view Mubarak's concessions as too little, to late.
11:04 PM, EST In the first real development, Sultan Al Qassemi tweets:
AFP: Mubarak requests from new Prime Minister Ahmed Shafik to open dialogue with opposition parties.
Cairo. Egypt's embattled President Hosni Mubarak tasked his new prime minister in an address on Sunday to take steps to promote democracy by talking with the opposition and to restore trust in the country's economy, AFP reports.
The veteran leader, who sacked his cabinet on Friday after a nationwide revolt, also said the new prime minister's priority is restricting unemployment and creating new jobs.
"Above all that, and concurrent with it, I emphasise the importance of urgently, completely, effectively taking new and continuous steps for more political reforms, constitutional and legislative, through dialogue with all parties," he said in an address carried by official media.
Mubarak also told Prime Minister Ahmed Shafiq in a formal address whose transcript was read out on television that the new government must "restore trust in our economy" and "decisively confront all forms of corruption."
More Videos and Photos From the Sudanese Protests:
More protests planned for tomorrow.