Zakaria: What is Mubarak thinking?
January 28th, 2011
02:28 PM ET

Zakaria: What is Mubarak thinking?

The Egyptian military is probably the oldest, most well-functioning institution in Egypt. Egypt has had a long tradition of a very strong state. What we're seeing is quite incredible because this is the oldest society in the Arab world with a deep and sophisticated culture with an authentic middle class. It  is also the oldest state, with a very long tradition of administrative control and a very powerful military. Both sides are trying to test the other to see which will give.

Any scenario, post-Mubarak, is going to involve the military because the military, in a sense, holds the country together. They will have to support whatever processes are put in place. My guess is that they're going to want to play a role that is behind the scenes and not right in front.

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Filed under: Egypt • Protest