Why Egypt Matters
Think on this. There is no Arab democracy. Arab rulers end up dying after decades in power and leaving the palace to their surly, corrupt sons as in Syria or Saudi Arabia. Or after decades in office they are forced out in a revolution and scramble onto a military
cargo plane with their distressed families and seek reunion with their bulging Swiss bank accounts. Think Tunisia.
Nowhere is there rule by the ballot.
Egypt may prove that rule by the ballot can work in an Arab land.
But the other test will be whether it can be secular rule. Is this going to be like 1979 in Iran when secular despotism was overthrown only to be replaced by Islamist despotism ? Nowhere in the Islamic world, outside Malaysia and Turkey, more recently Indonesia, does one find anything approaching separation of state and religion.
Is open democracy the way to counter Islamists ? As revealed by Wikileaks that was the hope of a US Ambassador expressed in a cable back in 2005. We will find out.