Updates Thursday Feb. 10 and Friday Feb. 11 – please scroll down. Newest updates are on top:
February 11, 2011 USA
1:35 pm CDT: Leland Vittert is in the middle of the crowd in Tahrir Square. He asks the people what they want. One man said (I think) “we want what Iraq has.” When asked about opinions of American, one said “we love the American system.”
About one-half hour ago, I heard someone on a Fox panel, sorry cannot remember who, say that 60% of Egyptians are under 20 years old, and that each family has an average of about 5 children.
Update 1:10 pm CDT: The military has announced that there is no Military Coup in Egypt.
Update 11:40 pm CDT: Switzerland announces they have frozen Hosni Mubarak’s assets.
Update 11:20 am CDT: Dominick DeNatale in Tahrir Square reports a loud boom – probably fireworks. Awaiting confirmation.
The jubilation continues in Tahrir Square.
Update 10:18 am CDT: Fox’s Dominick DeNatale says the roar of the crowd is huge. He can hear Bedouin women who have come in from the desert crying out. People are embracing each other and the Army.
Update 10:11 am CDT: Suleiman has announced that Mubarak has resigned. Says the High Council of the Army is now in charge.
Update 9:25 am CDT: Mubarak, or perhaps Suleiman stepping in for him, is expected to speak to the people any minute.
Update 7:55 am – 3:55 pm Cairo time: The crowds in Tahrir have spilled over into surrounding streets with protesters gathering outside the presidential palace and Egypt’s state television headquarters.
This report posted at 8:10 am EST says the protest in front of the State Television headquarters has begun to grow. Just a few minutes ago my time (CDT) a tweet from benwedeman @bencnn says the crowd pushed down some barbed-wire fencing in front of the State TV building – then they pulled it back, chanting “peaceful. Crowd estimated to be about 15,000 outside that building.
Helicopters are flying over Cairo agains
February 10, 2011 USA:
Update 6:27 pm CST – 2:27 am in Cairo on Feb. 11th: Think of how odd this was today, with the Military telling the crowds there would be an announcement that they would like very much. However, think about this as well – the Military told the crowds, once the announcement was made the people had to go home and go back to work, and if not “the military would act.”
Shep Smith is talking to Sameh Shoukhry, the Ambassador from Egypt to the U.S. He says Mubarak resigned ALL POWERS to day. Shep wants to know how easy it will be for Mubarak to take those powers back. The Ambassador says Mubarak cannot do that. Smith asks who can dissolve the Parliament…Suleiman. The Ambassador says no one can dissolve the Parliament. Interesting. I think Shoukhry is treading water and up to his nose.
Update 6:05 pm CST: Shep Smith is showing video of the crowds in Tahrir Square at 2:o5 am on Feburary 11th in Cairo. The square is not as full as it was earlier as Egyptians heard their president tell them that he is staying in power – that he is responsible for their safety and the stability of Egypt. The question is, what happens tomorrow.
Reports that Mohamed ElBaradei has tweeted that “Egypt will explode. The Army must save us.”
A speaker, perhaps an imam, is preparing to speak to the people in Tahrir Square. Now the imam is saying “Mubarak is against Islam. Mubarak is against Muslims. Leave means leave. Leave now.”
Update 3:35 pm CST: Omar Suleiman is speaking saying once again Hosni Barak has put Egypt first. We have put together a roadmap and the door is still open to doing and achieving everything that needs to be done, according to the constitution. We want to safeguard the confidence of the youth. We are looking for a future full of freedom and democracy. The brave people of Egypt will not go into chaos. Let us walk together hand and hand with the youth in love of our country.
To the youth and the heroes of Egypt, go back to your homes and your work. DO NOT LISTEN TO THE RADIO, TV AND SATELLITES. THEY ONLY WANT EGYPT TO LOOK WEAK.
Now is the hour of truth. Let’s work with the spirit of one team and the will of the Egyptians. I swore to God and pledged in front of you to do everything I can do to protect this country. May the peace of God and the blessings of God be upon you. End Suleiman’s comments.
Update 3:02 pm CST: THE CROWD IS SHOUTING DOWN WITH MUBARAK. VERY DIFFERENT FROM WHAT THEY EXPECTED.
The story is that Mubarak is not leaving office. He said one tiny line about transferring something to VP Omar Suleiman.
The big question is, what happens now. The military has said, after the announcement and agreement made, if the crowds do not disburse, they will act.
Mubarak says he will amend the 6 articles of concern immediately.
Update 2:45 m CST: Mubarak is speaking this minute.
The following is my transcription as Mubarak spoke. I cannot guarantee every word, but the words are close.
Mubarak says he is speaking to the youth of Egypt, and promises that the blood of their martyrs will be punished – he will punish them to the full extent of the law. He is serious about responding to his responsibilities.
I am convinced of the truthfulness of your movement and that your demands are valid. He says he now recognizes the errors in his regime, and he will prosecute those who committed atrocities.
I will never accept to listen to something dictated to me from a foreign source. I learned and I declared that I will not run for presidential elections. I am not going to give any more. For years I have given the country my service to defend the constitution and the people.
This is the oath I gave to God. I will keep this oath. Out of this crisis, I will respond to the youth and what they called for, in a way that will protect the youth, through a peaceful resolution and transition of power.
I will bring the country out of this crisis. I ask for the support of everyone who loves Egypt and the stability of Egypt so that we can all agree. And this stability will be guaranteed by our Military.
This dialog has led to an agreement of principal and will lead us to a way out of this crisis. We must work to agree on what we have agreed upon. We will move into the peaceful transition of power between now and the elections.
A constitutional committee will study the constitution and legal amendments, and a follow-up committee to see that I will follow through on my promises.
Faced with the martyrs we lost in Egypt, I have issued my instructions to carry out investigations of last week quickly. Yesterday I received my first report about consititutional amendments, and plans to study amendments that you have asked for. According to the power given to me in Art 189 of the Constitution, we are ready to move on and a request for further amendments to the constitution as needed. These amendments will make it easier to define the presidential time and mandates, and will guarantee the transparency of the president. Give legislative branch the sole power and cancel Article 179 to protect the country from terrorism. The emergency law will be stopped in a way that will guarantee the stability and safety of the Egyptian people.
Egypt is a great country. The current situation does not have anything to do with myself, my person, Hosni Mubarak. It is about Egypt and we must continue as a team and away from confrontation. We must bring back confidence in Egypt.
I learned about the honor of the Egyptian military as a youth. I spent my life fighting for the country. I went through wars and victories. I went through the best time of my life when I raised the flag of Egypt at Sinai. I never answered to International pressure. I worked for the children of Egypt, and never sought any political power. The people of Egypt know who Hosni Mubarak is. I am aware of the danger of this intersection and I am convinced that Egypt is going through a crucial time. I gave the presidential powers to the Vice President. We will go through this crisis and stand up again. We will prove, us, Egyptians our capabality to not follow or take instructions from anyone, except for the heartbeat of the people. We will show the spirit and the dignity of this country, the identity of Egypt.
I have lived for this country to carry on the responsibility to save it. Until I hand over that responsibility, this is the beginning of a lifetime. I will never leave Egypt and Egypt will never leave me until I am buried in the soil of Egypt.
May God protect Egypt and guide them in the right way. May the blessings of God be upon you.
Update: 2:11 CST: Large speakers are being erected in Tahrir Square as I type. The long-awaited comments from Mubarak have not come. The crowd is chanting, “Mubarak, leave, leave, leave,” and “My country, my country, to you belong my heart.”
Update 1:40 pm CST: “Egyptian generals have announced an important announcement immediately.” The time in Cairo is 9:40 pm.
Leland Vittert reporting from Cairo says the crowd at Tahrir Square are receiving text messages saying “the Supreme Council (similar to our Joint Chiefs of Staff) is “looking at the matter.” Vitteret says at this time it looks like the Military is breaking with the protesters, but if so, it will be seen by the U.S. as a positive sign that the government will not crumble.
Update 1:15 pm CST: Fox is reporting the possibility that Mubarak will go to “a clinic” in Germany (unconfirmed).
Update 1:00 pm CST: Two conflicting reports from Fox. 1) The Information Minister is saying that Mubarak has NOT agreed to step down, and 2) Mubarak has already handed power over to Suleiman – if so, will likely make the protesters extremely angry.
Earlier today, Suleiman said Egypt is “not ready for democracy.” (of course, only those power-mongers thinking they can grab total power would say such a thing)
Update 12:51 pm CST: Kelly reports an announcement by the Military, saying they will ACT if the protesters do not accept their plan for Suleiman to take the presidency, with the Military as a “gatekeeper.”
Update 12:35 pm CST: Fox just reporting (unconfirmed) Omar Suleiman, the new Vice President is taking power, not the government. Walid Phares says this is a difference without a distinction, that Suleiman taking the presidency still means the Military is in charge.
ALERT: Update 12:20 pm CST: Megyn Kelly announced that Obama will be speaking in 10 minutes.
Also said the some members of the Egyptian Military are “furious” with Obama for the way he has handled the uprising.
The power will be in the hands of the official Higher Council of the Armed Services (Army).
ALERT: Update 12:02 pm CST: Fox announces that Mubarak should be speaking to the Egyptian people “about an hour from now.”
Update 11:25 am CST: Fox’s Dominick Di-Natale reports that Mubarak may be stepping down within the next hour.
Update 11:10 am CST: Reuters is reporting a statement from a senior member of Muslim Brotherhood. Fears the Egyptian military is staging a coup. “The Military is the regime.”
Michael Singh on Fox says the Egyptian Military favors the Israel-Egypt Peace Treaty, as do many, many of the Egyptian people.
Update 110:52 am CST: Judith Miller is reporting from Israel, asking if Mubarak’s departure is voluntarily, and if it is, it is a great victory. Miller supports David Scheneker’s statement that if the “regime” is not gone, this is not good news for the Egyptian people.
David Scheneker reported that with Mubarak stepping down, the regime IS NOT GONE.
Update 10:40 am CST: Egyptian television announced that Hosni Mubarak will address the Egyptian people tonight, from Sharm El-Sheikh.
Update 10:25 am CST: Fox has announced an Egyptian official told reporter James Rosen that Mubarak is OUT, the Military is IN. Rosen was also told that this breaks from the Egyptian constitution which calls for the Speaker of Parliament to take the seat of the presidency. The hope and belief if that putting the military in power is to guarantee the orderly transfer of power to someone.
Update 10:15 am CST: Egypt’s military has announced they have stepped in to protect the country.
Fox reporting AP says Mubarak has left the Cairo government headquarters and is at his Sharm El-Sheikh home.
Sharm El-Sheikh, also called the “City of Peace” is located on the tip of the Sinai Peninsula, located on the Red Sea. It is the administrative hub of Egypt’s South Sinai Governorate. The area was recaptured by Israel after the Six-Days War and is the location of the signing of the 1979 Israel-Egypt Peace Treaty. Source.
Update 10:00 am CST: The CIA says there is a strong chance that Mubarak will step down. Aljazeera is reporting Mubarak will step down.
Now reporting that the Egyptian Military has met, without Mubarak present.
Update 9:53 CST: There is a large presence of tanks and armored personnel carriers in Tahrir Square.
Update 9:50 am CST: Fox New’s Dominick DiNatale now reporting that the Prime Minister will not confirm Mubarak’s departure. Other sources have told Fox that Mubarak is staying but the military is taking power.
Update: Fox is reporting that the Prime Minister now says Mubarak will announce his resignation today, on day 17 of the protests.
Disclaimer: No matter what Mubarak does, the Egyptian people will not be freed. The country is an Islamic country. The people will not be freed, but perhaps, just perhaps, their lives will be come more peaceful and prosperous for awhile.