UPDATE 1:15 PM
Never mind. Mubarak offered a few new concessions, but, in the words of Al Jazeera English, “made it clear that he wasn’t going anywhere.”
As any student of politics knows, this won’t end anything. Basic political science is that revolutions are most likely to happen not when an oppressed people are at their most desperate, but when they have hope and that hope is denied. True to form, the masses now gathering in Tahrir Square and elsewhere (at nearly midnight local time) are staggeringly angry.
To be continued…
= = =
Numerous outlets are now reporting that in an address to his country in the next few hours, Hosni Mubarak will step down as Egypt’s president, handing power over to (depending on the report) either his newly anointed vice president or the military.
If true, the question, of course, is where Egypt goes from here. But for the time being, this is a remarkable victory for people power. A leaderless, youth-dominated movement, without initiating any violence, has removed from power a brutal dictator of three decades, backed by billions of dollars in military aid from the most powerful country in the world. Can’t have a much more powerful expression of democracy than that.