The Egyptian Revolution : Moment of Truth
Mubarak no chance of surviving politically due to 30 years of corruption, nepotism and despotic governance but will what follows destabilise the Middle East?
The popular uprising of the last days in Egypt was the outcome of 30 consecutive years of authoritarian governance.
Following the example of Tunisia, the people of Egypt revolted against Hosni Mubarak's regime demanding democracy and social justice.
In the streets of Cairo, Alexandria and Suez the Egyptians are expressing their need for political and social change - "Mubarak should go" is the popular slogan in Cairo these days.
Like King Louis XIV of France, Hosni Mubarak was possessed by the idea of creating a dynasty. His son, Gamal, was designated to follow his steps and become the next President of the country.
However the people of Egypt - especially the young, unemployed and socially deprived - had different thoughts.
After three decades of corruption, nepotism and despotic governance, Mubarak had no chance to survive politically.
The social explotion surprised not only the Egyptian regime, but also it's close allies.
The United States found itself unprepared to deal with the possibility of Mubarak's overthrow.
A loyal ally of the West for years, President Mubarak has been a guardian of US interests in the Middle East thus establishing good relations with Egypt's long-time foe, Israel.
The possibility of a domino effect in other Arab countries is a scenario that frightens both Washington and Tel Aviv. Why? Former Israeli Minister Moshe Arens explained it with simple words in his Haaretz article: "The implicit understanding has been that it is easier for a dictator to meet Israel's fundamental conditions and a near-impossible task for a democratically elected Arab government".
Indeed, the questions that dominates Israel these days are more than one - and not easy to be answered: Who will be the next leader of Egypt?
Who guarantees that the new leadership will respect the 1979 Israeli-Egyptian Peace Treaty?
What will be the concequences of a popular revolt in Jordan? If there are two people in the world who would like to see Hosni Mubarak keeping his position, they are President Obama and Prime Minister Netanyahu. Each one for his own reasons.
The Israeli PM knows that Egypt under Mubarak's regime (like Jordan under King Abdullah II) does not pose a threat to his country, as it has been proved three decades now. On the other side of the Atlantic Ocean, the US saw the Egyptian revolution as a potential threat to the American established interests in the Middle East.
I can guess that the major question in the corridors of State Department these days is "what will happen in case an extreme Islamic brotherhood takes control of Cairo's government?".
This fear forced Washington to talk about "peaceful transition of power" and "needed democratic reforms". In fact, even indirectly, the US government abandoned it's long-time friend Mubarak, "after using him such-and-such for years" as Venezuelan leader Hugo Chavez pointed out.
But most importantly, the status-quo of the authoritarian regimes is shaking and the Cairo events may spread like a wildfire in other Arab nations, from Yemen to Jordan and Syria.
In a few words, the social uprising in Egypt has created a new political environment in the Middle East. The next weeks are going to be extremely significant for realizing the actual geopolitical concequences of 21st century's first big popular revolution.
Nicolas Mottas is a specialist on Greece, Balkan and Middle East politics who now resides in Tel Aviv - he writes regularly for http://www.phantis.com Neos Kosmos and other publications.
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