HOW MUCH INFLUENCE DOES THE U.S. HAVE OVER EGYPT?

Is the 1.5 billion dollars provided by the U.S. to maintain Egypt’s military, the influence that will convince what ever democratic (hopefully) government that might rise from the current chaos to maintain a friendly relationship with us and continued peace with Israel?

It still remains unclear as how many of the once peaceful protesters are now made up of secular versus fanatical religious groups. How many of the 80 million Egyptians have already chosen sides? We know that the majority of the protesters are young, fairly well-educated, jobless, hungry and thirsty. Are they ripe to be influenced and absorbed into the Muslim Brotherhood, or does their fight remain for freedom? The entire Middle East has the potential from becoming under the influence of Iran, which already has Syria, Lebanon and Gaza in its fold.

The fall of Egypt would place Suez, the Canal, so vital for the transport of oil to North America in jeopardy. This alone could cause the price of oil, plastics and fuel that the American people require, to become almost unaffordable. The domino effect would ultimately create food shortages and drive up the price of essentials required by every American.

The newly appointed Vice-President of Egypt, has essentially told the United States to stay out of Egypt’s internal affairs. The question remains, what pressure, if any, can Obama exert to force Mubarak’s resignation? If Mubarak steps down, who will fill the void? There does not seem to be any strong individual waiting in the wings to assume leadership, so the presence of Islamic Fundamentalism remains a serious threat.

One must assume from reports that it is pro-Mubarak thugs who have been attacking journalists from all over the world. The real protesters must understand, that America is not their enemy and that our government is in support of the reasons for which they protest, but must tread a fine line; less further chaos leads to the take over of Egypt by significantly unfriendly forces.

Mubarak’s use of hired thugs to suggest that the situation would worsen if he stepped down is no different from the tactics and use of propaganda used by every dictator who has attempted to assume or keep control. This must cease if any sense might be made of a terribly critical world threatening situation.

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