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‘Egyptian army follows Israel, US orders’

Press TV
March 7, 2011

Protests in Egypt gain momentum as revolutionaries say they are set to disclose information incriminating senior officials over their involvement in the violent crackdown on anti-regime protests.

Press TV talks with Mark Glenn, writer and political commentator from Coeur d’Alene, to assess whether or not we are seeing some departure from the era of former ruler Hosni Mubarak.

Press TV: Footage coming in live from Egypt show that the Egyptian people out on the streets protesting are still unhappy about what is going on there; with the fact that a lot of the elements connected to Mubarak regime are still in power, but little by little apparently things are changing: the latest move being a replacement prime minister who has now appointed new ministers for the foreign affairs and interior portfolios. This seems a sign that Hosni Mubarak’s old guard are being removed from the cabinet.

These recent moves by Prime Minister Essam Sharaf in appointing new ministers — do you think we are seeing a departure from the Mubarak era? Is this really happening?

Mark Glenn: No I do not see this as a departure from the Mubarak era. I see it simply as a shell game at this point. Remember the military is still in control in Egypt and no matter who is moved from whatever post they formerly held to a new prime minister-ship or whatever post that they’re given, the people who are still holding the guns are still in control.

So this, in my opinion, is an exercise in posturing and making it look as if things are moving along according to the democratic process there. But in general, there has not been a revolution yet in Egypt; we have seen a protest take place; we have seen the removal of a dictator, but the system that existed before with Mubarak in power is still the system that exists today.

Press TV: This is obviously not what the people (the Egyptians) want, but why is it that a revered system in the country called the army that took neither the protesters’ side nor Mubarak’s side, and it is actually a much respected organization, wants to distort its image by its recent moves?

Mark Glenn: Well we have to keep in mind that the job of the army is to do as it’s told, to salute, say “Yes Sir”, and to execute whatever orders it’s given. This is the job of armies for better or for worse. We have to remember that these men are well trained to do what they’re doing and particularly they have been well-trained by the US and Israel – something that Hilary Clinton was bragging about earlier this weekend when she was talking about the extensive training that these men had received at the cost of the United States.

Obviously it puts these men in a very difficult position – they are Egyptians; they have friends, they have family who live in the country, but at the end of the day, as history has proven time and again, unfortunately men who are trained to follow orders usually they do wind up following orders – we can see this taking place in next door Libya. And if things get out of hand in Egypt unfortunately this is what I think we will see take place there as well.

If the protesters do not return to their jobs, to their quiet little lives that they were living before all of this protest erupted, if a new government is not found that meets with the approval of the people, you will see the army being utilized in cracking down on these protesters.

Press TV: Are you trying to indicate that what we’re seeing is a movement from one dictatorship to another one?

Mark Glenn: I think that the dictator that was in place two months ago is the same dictator that’s in place today even though Mubarak has left, the same system is in place and in general they are getting their orders from the US and from Israel. Now, there’s no question about the fact, we can assume that there are people in the Egyptian military who are not comfortable with this, we may see some defections as we saw with Muammar Gaddafi’s Libya, but in general it is the same system.

I hate to have to throw cold water on all of this, but we have to remember that a revolution has not been fought, a revolution has not been won, a dictator has been forced out of power, but the system that he sat on top of, still continues to sit on top of the Egyptian people.

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