The Real News Network talks with Khaled Fahmy, professor and chair of American University in Cairo's Department of History, who describes the power structure inside Egypt's Mubarak regime and explains that things in Egypt are not as simple as getting rid of Mubarak personally - that he is not a "one man show" and that there is a very well established political and social counter-revolutionary power establishment including the Egyptian military that is determined to defend the Mubarak regime, and the Egyptian Army is not nearly as much on the side of the protesters as might appear on the surface...
Pepe Escobar also writes today that:
The Egyptian revolution is being dissolved right in front of the world's eyes by an optical illusion.
The protesters who have been on the streets for two weeks still want President Hosni Mubarak out. Now. Yet United States President Barack Obama is firmly in not-so-fast mode, glad that "Egypt is making progress". Obama has not mentioned even once the capital words "free elections".
Washington's "orderly transition" road map - fully supported by Tel Aviv and European capitals - is a facelift. Mubarak stepping down has become an afterthought; the already anointed successor is Vice President Omar Suleiman, the former head of the Mukhabarat, whom the protesters call "Sheik al-Torture".
Egypt is a hardcore military dictatorship. The army, essentially paid for by US taxpayer money, is no "honest broker". The Mubarak regime's repression against the protests has not been even more vicious because soldiers in this conscript army would certainly have refused to shoot their own people; thus plan B, the regime's goons and the hated baltagia - state-sponsored thugs in plainclothes - unleashed last week.
Still, the regime was never shaken to the core - because the army remains in charge. Graphic example; the state-owned newspaper al-Gomhuria had a monster headline this Monday reading "New Era" above a photo of Suleiman meeting some of the opposition under a picture of Mubarak.
According to a 2006 diplomatic cable on WikiLeaks, the CIA - what else? - also loves him; "Our intelligence collaboration with Oman Soliman [sic] is now probably the most successful element of the relationship" with Egypt. Suleiman always negotiated directly with top CIA officials.
On the other side of the spectrum, Human Rights Watch stresses, "Egyptians ... see Suleiman as Mubarak II, especially after the lengthy interview he gave to state television Feb 3 in which he accused the demonstrators in Tahrir Square of implementing foreign agendas. He did not even bother to veil his threats of retaliation against protesters."
MORE: 'Sheik al-Torture' is now a democrat, Pepe Escobar, February 08, 2011