MORE ON EGYPT – AT 11:56 P.M. ET: This is our second report today documenting the rapidly deteriorating situation in Egypt. The middle-class revolution of only weeks ago is clearly being betrayed. What is happening is frightening, with potentially devastating effects on American interests. From The Wall Street Journal:
CAIRO—Iran and Egypt's new government signaled Monday they were moving quickly to thaw decades of frosty relations, worrying the U.S., Israel and Saudi Arabia that the overtures could upset the Mideast's fragile balance of power.
Iran said it appointed an ambassador to Egypt for the first time since the two sides froze diplomatic relations more than three decades ago, the website of the Iranian government's official English-language channel, Press TV, reported late Monday.
Also Monday, officials at Egypt's Ministry of Foreign Affairs confirmed that new foreign minister Nabil Elaraby is considering a visit to the Gaza Strip—an area controlled by Hamas, a militant Palestinian Islamist group backed by Tehran and until now shunned by Cairo.
And, from AP:
Protesters led by hardline Islamists in southern Egypt held their ground Monday, saying they won't end their campaign of civil disobedience until the government removes a newly appointed Coptic Christian governor.
The protesters, many from the ultraconservative Salafi trend of Islam, have been sitting on train tracks, taken over government buildings and blocked main roads in the southern city of Qena, insisting the new governor won't properly implement Islamic law.
COMMENT: Welcome to the 10th century. A good time will be had by some. Women, of course, need not appyl
It is very sad to see the promise of the revolution falling apart, but we had a very early hint of this when one of the heroes of the revolt – the guy who sent messages of revolution on Facebook – was barred from speaking to crowds once the new military government took over.
It is rapidly turning into an Islamic orgy. There will be elections in the fall, but the Islamic parties are well positioned, the truly democratic parties are not.
As is being said more and more, the Arab spring may well turn into an Iranian winter.
April 18, 2011