And what a wave it has been! Today in Cairo and throughout Egypt, it is carnival time. But just a day ago, no one knew how events would turn out. But throughout, the protesters acted with great dignity and remarkable self-control. They refused to be intimidated despite over 300 of their number being killed. Their determination and courage has been a wonder to see, an inspiration that has resonated across the world.The Saudi editorialist doesn't presume to know what the future may hold; only Allah knows that. Nonetheless, the writer is tickled at the prospect of --now, how did Prime Minister Harper (who, really, should know better) just put it?; oh, yeah--"free and fair elections" in Egypt for the first time in, well, decades:
What happens next in Egypt is impossible to predict. Will Mubarak’s resignation calm the situation or will the protesters, having tasted success, want more? Two of their demands are met. Mubarak has gone and power has not been handed to Omar Suleiman, Mubarak’s brief vice president but to the army council. But there were two other demands from the protesters. They want a new Parliament and an end to the emergency laws.
The army council must oblige. It had already said that the laws would go once the crisis ends. As for Parliament, it can simply call for new parliamentary elections alongside a new presidential contest."Future stability"--Saudi code for Islamist rule, as you can pretty much count on "the ballot box" in a "free and fair election" empowering the Muslim Brotherhood just as in another "free and fair election" (one overseen by Jimmy Carter, as I recall) it empowered Hamas.
These elections are key to future stability. The army has shown itself on the side of the protesters but it now has to show its assumption of power is temporary. A new legitimacy has to be found. That can be provided only by the ballot box...