Death toll in Egypt protests reaches five as anti-government riots persist
Demonstrations against the rule of President Hosni Mubarak resumed in many cities throughout Egypt on Wednesday.
Protesters set government offices ablaze and targeted a building belonging to the ruling party. The media reported at least 50 injured in clashes with security forces and three people lost their lives in the clashes in Suez."
The situation has gone out of control, and there is a real war in the streets," a reporter for Al Jazeera in Suez reported.
They demanded that Mubarak not run in the next presidential election; that his son Gamal not present himself as a candidate; that parliament be disbanded, because they claim it was not legally elected; and that an emergency caretaker government be appointed.
Unrest spreads to Yemen as Egypt enters third day of riots
President Ali Abdullah Saleh, a key ally of the United States in its war against a resurgent Yemeni arm of Al-Qaida, has ruled the impoverished Arabian Peninsula state for over 30 years.
Thousands of demonstrators took to the streets of Sanaa, Yemen on Thursday to demand a change of government, inspired by the unrest that has ousted Tunisia's leader and spread to Egypt this week.
So what do all of these protests mean for Israel and how do they fit into end times prophecy?
In all three nations, Egypt, Lebanon and Yemen, we have had relatively stable leaders with governments which at least appeared moderate and at least gave the world some degree of stability.
With the potential overthrow of the existing governments in these countries, the safe bet is that a more radical leader will emerge and lead a far more "anti-Israel" regime.
White House declines to endorse Mubarak in Egypt
To be fair, the White House is in a tough spot, as Allahpundit noted yesterday.
We traditionally oppose dictatorships and support democratization movements.
In places like Tunisia, where democratization efforts are championed by secular, more Western-friendly forces, that’s an easy mission for the US to back. In Egypt, however, the energy behind the political opposition comes from the Muslim Brotherhood, an Islamist force seeking not democracy but a new theocracy. And if this sounds familiar, it should:
In 1979, another US administration faced a similar problem in Iran, which had been ruled by the Shah with something less than a velvet glove.
The Shah fell as the result of a popular uprising, perhaps aided somewhat by the less-than-enthusiastic support given by Jimmy Carter and his administration in the preceding weeks...
Given Mubarak’s status as a de facto president-for-life and his own track record of political suppression, it’s almost impossible for Obama to endorse Mubarak.
However, by signaling sudden distance between Mubarak and the US, the impulse to stage a coup will certainly not decrease.
If Mubarak falls, the result will almost certainly be either a seizure of power by the Muslim Brotherhood or a military coup, both hardly desirable outcomes in Egpyt, especially considering its strategic position on the Suez Canal.
And the bottom line resulting from all of this turmoil?
If the Muslim Brotherhood takes control of Egypt, Israel will suddenly face an existential threat to its south and from Gaza, as well as a new Hezbollah-run Lebanon in the north. That’s a nightmare scenario for Israel, which has its own issues with Mubarak but nothing on the scale of what may be coming.
Debka has more on this situation:
Mubarak's defense minister bids for US backing in Washington
DEBKAfile's Washington sources report that in secret meetings, the Egyptian defense minister put the situation before President Barack Obama and a row of top US political, military and intelligence officials. He warned them that by advocating a soft hand with the demonstrators and responsiveness to their demands, American officials were doing more harm than good. Without a crackdown, he said, the regime was doomed.
Tantawi also warned that the radical Muslim Brotherhood, which has stood aside from the opposition protests, was merely biding its time for the right moment to step in and take over.
The level of anti-government protest and violence escalated in the streets of Egyptian cities Wednesday night, Jan. 26 even after President Hosni Mubarak ordered a million security officers to back up the police and for the first time open fire on rioters in the town of Suez, leaving scores of dead and wounded. Western sources told DEBKAfile that security forces lost control of the situation in the main Suez Canal port after protesters managed to break through a line of police defending the suburb housing government institutions and set them on fire.
None of this can be good for Israel. The odds of a newly formed government in Egypt or Yemen being more favorable to Israel or adding to stability in the region are very low. If replaced by a more radical Islamic faction, as predicted, then the vice around Israel is indeed tightening considerably.
These developments are happening quite rapidly and show no signs of slowing down.
The prophetic implications are potentially big - as we know violence against Israel will be coming. We may be watching the stage being further set, as radical Islam has a big open door into both governments. We have witnessed the takeover of the Lebanese government, and now we may be seeing the same situation evolving on Israel's southern border.
This may be the "worst-case scenario" for Israel, and we're watching it evolve. Its a good thing that Israel has God on their side...Its beginning to look like they'll have to call on Him soon.