Home > Current Affairs > Reading Tea Leaves: Jan 28, 2011

Reading Tea Leaves: Jan 28, 2011

As I have said before, Hosni Mubarak’s reign in Egypt is now unsalvageable.

How can a dictator know that his time is over. Let me help..

1. Protesters trash your party headquarters.

Protestors set fire to ruling party headquarters in Egypt

There are reports that the headquarters of the ruling National Democratic Party have been set on fire in Cairo as protestors stay out on the streets despite a curfew. Witnesses have reported tanks on the streets of the capital as the military have been deployed to help the police deal with the protestors.

When people in a dictatorship have lost fear of their “glorious leader” and his security apparatus to a level where they find it fun to trash the ruling part HQ, it is essentially over for the regime.

2. People do not care about your posturing or words.

Egypt’s Mubarak sends in army, resists demands to quit

Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak refused on Saturday to bow demands that he resign, after ordering troops and tanks into cities in an attempt to quell an explosion of street protest against his 30-year rule.

Evidently Cairo, and other Egyptian cities, are under curfew. However protesters and mobs seem to have missed the notice.

3. Every major group hates you, more than they hate each other.

Hosni Mubarak: How one man united a country – in hatred

The Egyptian protesters are from many backgrounds but they all seek the same goal, the fall of a despotic regime

The widespread protests that began against the regime of President Hosni Mubarak have spread in the last few days to encompass almost an entire people. It now includes not only the stone-throwing youths who huddled in the fog of teargas below the underpasses near the centre of Cairo, or charged police on the Nile bridges, but Egyptians from all walks of life

It seem that a very large percentage of Egyptians- muslims and copts, young and middle-aged, employed and unemployed harbor deep resentment towards Mubarak’s regime. It is one thing to piss off a few groups at a time, but pissing off almost everyone is not a good idea.

4. The army does not openly stand behind you, but your goons do.

Egypt’s Respected Military Is Seen as Pivotal in What Happens Next

Even as armored military vehicles deployed around important Egyptian government institutions on Friday for the first time in decades, it remained difficult to predict what role the armed forces might play in either quelling the disturbances or easing President Hosni Mubarak from power.

A dictator is only as strong as the people who will enforce his edicts. Under ‘normal’ situations the armed forces are the most important source of coercive power available to a leader. If their support is nebulous or conditional, the guy is screwed.

5. Everything done by the leader to assert his power seems to backfire.

Dictators reach a point where everything they do has the contrary effect. It appears that everything Mubabrak is doing, from shutting off broadband internet to using goons to intimidate protesters seems to be having the opposite effect.

Now it is only a matter of time (hours to months) when he will:

-be killed
-have to flee
-be imprisoned and tried

Any bets?


Categories: Current Affairs
  1. Robert Layne
    January 28, 2011 at 6:52 pm

    What I wonder is why now … Mubarak has been hated for years.

    Critical Mass.

  2. P.T. Barnum
    January 28, 2011 at 7:38 pm

    Could be another Western sponsored “Orange Revolution”.

    Sometimes the new boss is as bad/worse than the old boss.

  3. almost 40 yov
    January 29, 2011 at 3:36 am

    Sponsored or not (I´m rather of the opinion that not) “Urop” is going to get a RUDE wake u call, when things over there become so chaotic that the channel closes.

    Just one idiot + RPG + Freighter and after two days our Hospitals run out of syringes. Oh yeah, and we out of oil. Heh.

    Will be a blast to see how much OUR wanna be despot bureaucrats praise democracy in Egypt then.
    Interesting times.

  4. Nestorius
    January 29, 2011 at 9:18 am

    Well, Mubarak now is paying the price of what Abdul Naser should have paid a long time ago. Most of the problems Egyptians are having now date back to the times of Abdul Naser. I tend to see the situation of Mubarak as bad luck although he contributed to the situation by not doing anything.

    He had thirty years to do something.

  5. Julian
    February 3, 2011 at 12:29 pm

    Nasser was and still is loved as a hero throughout much of that part of the world. Mubarak has been despised almost from the start. Mubarak needed outside help to stay in power, Gen. Nasser did not. I’ve talked to Sudanese who considered Nasser a great man; if you know much about that part of the world (hint Egyptians and Sudanese aren’t known for being the best of allies) that should tell you something. Nasser was and is seen as a friend of common Arabs and a man who stood up to the West, Mubarak is seen as an enemy of common Arabs and a lackey of the West.

    Agree on that one.

  1. January 30, 2011 at 3:41 am
  2. February 11, 2011 at 4:35 pm

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