Tuesday, December 24, 2013

At least the Gamal issue is resolved

It occurs to me that even though the same basic faction that was running Egypt during the Mubarak era is back in charge now, that the 2011 revolution did resolve one important issue about succession. As Hosni Mubarak aged many wondered who would come after him. For almost his entire time as President, Mubarak had had not appointed a vice president and that office was vacant. (Mubarak finally appointed Omar Suleiman as VP on January 29, 2011, 12 days before Mubarak resigned) and for much of his last decade in power, Mubarak appeared to be angling to have his son, Gamal Mubarak, inherit the position. Which was not very popular outside of Mubarak's immediate circle. Many wondered whether the military would accept Gamal's authority after Hosni's death. And so, a big question mark hung over the future of the Egyptian government throughout Mubarak's final years in power. During my brief 2007 visit to Egypt several people grumbled about the succession issue when I spoke with them. Not to get all Friedmany about this, but it did seem like the question was in the air.

 It's still not clear who will be President after Aldy Mansour, the guy sworn in when Morsi was deposed in last summer's coup, dies or moves on. There are vague plans for another round of national elections some time in the future, which may or may not happen. Mansour has said that he will not run (should those elections occur). And, of course, Mansour could always change his mind later. But, there's no longer any talk about installing Gamal Mubarak and setting up a dynastic regime in Egypt. That issue, at least, is resolved. So I guess that is something.