Things are about to get a whole lot more dangerous for all involved - including for Mubarak. He's left himself no wiggle room, and with the rioters descending on the peaceful protesters at Tahrir Square, there will be a call for blood.
Also, while Mubarak claimed yesterday that he would not run for reelection in the September elections, there's quite a bit that he didn't say, which is even more noteworthy:
1. Emergency law is still effective, which means oppression, brutality, arrests, and torture will continue. How can you have any hope for fair democratic elections under emergency law where the police have absolute power?2. Internet is still not working, no talks of lifting censorship.The Army is now calling for an end to the protests, which means that the window of opportunity for the anti-Mubarak protesters is closing fast.
3. No talks of allowing freedom of speech, freedom to create political parties, freedom to participate in politics without the risk of getting arrested. FYI to start a political party you need the government's permission. How do you expect democracy to come out of this?
4. He said he will put anyone responsible for corruption to trial right? What about putting the police who killed 300+ to trial? What about members of NDP who are the most corrupt businessmen/politicians in the country. Do you think he'll put those to trial? Think again.
5. He didn't even take responsibility for anything that went wrong in the last 30 years. Not even his condolences to the martyrs who have fallen in this revolution.
From the BBC live feed:
#Far too many people think that the US is omnipotent and can simply deem whoever it chooses to be in power, or that it can force Mubarak from power. It's never quite that easy or simple, and it still remains up to the Egyptian people and Mubarak to figure out the path ahead.
1432: Egyptian state-owned Channel One TV cites a security source as saying that no gun shots have been fired in Tahrir Square, as reported by al-Jazeera.
1430: A journalist in Tahrir Square tells al-Jazeera that one of the pro-government demonstrators has been killed. Hundreds of people have also been wounded, the journalist says.
1426: Ola in Egypt writes: "Not only will Mubarak and the Egyptian military be blamed for any bloodshed that happens today, but also the western governments - Obama, the UK and the EU for sitting back and watching. For encouraging him to buy time while watching him use very low tactics." Have Your Say
Anderson Cooper, who is covering the protests at Tahrir Square for CNN was attacked by a crowd of people. Tear gas and molotov cocktails are being hurled into the crowds.
The Army is holding its fire. It wont take actions against either the demonstrators or the pro-Mubarak agitators who have streamed into Tahrir Square to disrupt what had been peaceful demonstrations. Via BBC:
1534: BBC world affairs editor John Simpson, in Tahrir Square, says: "I am among a group of Mubarak supporters. They have been preparing all sorts of weapons - pulling down iron railings, breaking up paving stones - and using them against anti-government protesters. There has been a kind of counter-attack by the pro-Mubarak groups, who are determined to force the remaining protesters out of the square. The soldiers are right here, sitting on their tanks, looking on and occasionally taking shelter, but are not trying to intervene. People know the army is not going to fire on either side, so their presence is not intimidating. The Mubarak supporters are forcing their way into the square through all the main entrances, and trying to force out the protesters gathered there."
Multiple reports indicate that pro-Mubarak thugs are throwing firebombs/molotov cocktails, and several have fallen on the grounds of the Cairo Museum. Army soldiers and demonstrators have been trying to put out the fires before they spread. The pro-Mubarak thugs continue throwing firebombs at the protesters.
UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon says that the transition of power should occur now. That's yet another call for Mubarak to step down. Those calls are increasing, even as the pro-Mubarak thugs are streaming into the streets to confront the demonstrators.
Here's more video, showing pro-Mubarak thugs hurling Molotov cocktails and getting into scrums with protesters - sending volleys of rocks hurling at each other: