by Patrick Appel
Marc Lynch's latest is well worth a read. He believes that the "Egyptian military must receive the message loudly, directly and clearly that the price of a continuing relationship with America is Mubarak's departure and a meaningful transition to a more democratic and inclusive political system":
I would say that the time has come for the Obama administration to escalate to the next step of actively trying to push Mubarak out. They were right to not do so earlier. No matter how frustrated activists have been by his perceived hedging, until yesterday it was not the time to move to the bottom line. Mubarak is an American ally of 30 years and needed to be given the chance to respond appropriately. And everyone seems to forget that magical democracy words (a phrase which as far as I know I coined) don't work. Obama saying "Mubarak must go" would not have made Mubarak go, absent the careful preparation of the ground so that the potential power-brokers saw that they really had no choice. Yesterday's orgy of state-sanctioned violence should be the moment to make clear that there is now no alternative.