by Patrick Appel

Stratfor's analysis focuses on Ahmed Shafiq, who Mubarak just named as Prime Minister:

Mubarak is essentially accelerating a succession plan that has been in the works for some time. STRATFOR noted in December 2010 that a conflict was building between the president on one side and the old guard in the army and the ruling party on the other over Mubarak’s attempt to create a path for his son Gamal to eventually succeed him. The interim plan Mubarak had proposed was for Suleiman to become vice president, succeed Mubarak and then pass the reins to Gamal after some time. The stalwart members of the old guard, however, refused this plan. Though they approved of Suleiman, they knew his tenure would be short-lived given his advanced age. Instead, they demanded that Shafiq, who comes from the air force the most privileged branch of the military from which Mubarak himself also came be designated the successor. Shafiq is close to Mubarak and worked under his command in the air force. Shafiq also has the benefit of having held a civilian role as minister of civil aviation since 2002, making him more palatable to the public.

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