Next Stop for Mubarak: German Luxury Clinic?
Hosni Mubarak searches for the best way out of Egypt
As we've learned, there aren't a lot of options for an ousted dictator seeking refuge these days. So perhaps, despite declaring he'd die on Egyptian soil, Hosni Mubarak really would consider the plan supposedly in the works: The latest, from Spiegel Online, is that Mubarak may make his way out of the embattled country via a medical trip to Germany.
The U.S. and other Western governments have been in contact with Egyptian officials in an attempt to coordinate the least-bumpy transition possible from the Mubarak regime to a democratic government. According to Der Spiegel, these talks have resulted in plans for the dictator's stay in a German hospital, specifically a "luxury clinic" near Baden-Baden. Though the German publication couldn't obtain a comment from the specific hospital, they discovered that the Max-Grundig-Klinik-Bühlerhöhe boasts the "comfort and service of a top hotel" and a well-respected oncology department on its website.
So how does Germany feel about Mubarak camping out in one of its hospitals? "Politicians from Germany's center-right coalition government under Chancellor Angela Merkel have said in recent days they were open to a hospital stay by Mubarak in Germany," Spiegel reporters Björn Hengst and Christoph Schwennicke write.
Daily Intel's Nitasha Tiku also notes the clinic in question's oncology department, reminding readers that "Mubarak had his gullbladdar and an intestinal polyp removed at another German clinic, but doctors quashed the cancer rumor at the time." A quick search of the facility produces photos depicting a complex with a tennis court and descriptions of the "four star rooms" with a staff willing to fulfill any special requests. "Based on the staff photos scrolling across its website, bellhop Frank Meuschke is no voluptuous Ukranian nurse, but we bet he'll be willing to lend a sympathetic ear about the good intentions of passing down your 30-year reign to your son," Tiku predicts.
AOL News Contributor Lauren Frayer calls Mubarak's exit through Germany "face-saving," and predicts it "would be heralded as victory for demonstrators calling for his ouster and would also give Egypt's new vice president some breathing room to implement US-backed reforms."
Others have made observations as to where Mubarak will go if and when he leaves Egypt. Wired's Noah Shactman scrutinizes Mubarak's previous travel patterns for clues to his next destination. Shactman notes that, based on Mubarak's history of medical travel, he will most likely choose a location with well-respected medical facilities. He points out, however, that European countries home to large Arab populations may be hard to penetrate, ruling out Germany and France. Shactman settles on Saudi Arabia, a favorite of Mubarak's that has also recently accepted fellow ousted dictator Zine El Abidine Ben Ali of Tunisia.