History, Ctd


by Chris Bodenner

Robin Wright reflects:

First, the ultimate irony is that today is also the anniversary of the Iranian revolution. How different Egypt's transition is--and is likely to be. Whatever Iran claims, the theocrats have to be nervous about the strength of street power and the potential implications for their own opposition.

Second, in a region made famous for suicide bombings, the use of civil disobedience to peacefully force Hosni Mubarak from the presidency after three decades changes the political dynamics, not only in Egypt. The tools of opposition have changed profoundly too.

Finally, the Arab world's old authoritarian order is being shattered, whatever happens next. With Egypt accounting for roughly one-quarter of the Arab world's 300 million people, the transition of political power in Cairo will have widespread effect across the twenty-two nation bloc. From Casablanca to Kuwait, Tripoli to Damascus, Egypt's transition will affect every other Arab country in some way-small or large, direct or indirect.

(Photo: Egyptian anti-government protesters celebrate under fireworks at Cairo's Tahrir Square after president Hosni Mubarak stepped down on February 11, 2011. Cairo's streets exploded in joy when Mubarak stepped down after three-decades of autocratic rule and handed power to a junta of senior military commanders. By Marco Longari/AFP/Getty Images)