Former UN nuclear chief and Egyptian diplomat Mohammed ElBaradei, right, speaks during a press conference with Saad al-Katatni, the parliamentary leader of Egypt's largest opposition bloc, the Muslim Brotherhood, after their meeting in Cairo, June 5, 2010
"Inscrutable Face of Egypt's Future"
Op-Ed, Washington Times
July 23, 2010
Author: Chuck Freilich, Senior Fellow, International Security Program
Belfer Center Programs or Projects: International Security
Post-Mubarak era defies clear prediction
"Sometime in the next 20, 30, 40 years" an Egyptian wag speculated some time ago, "Muba-rak may no longer be the president." Recent reports indicate, however, that Mr. Mubarak, 82 and in his 29th year of rule, is seriously ill, although official sources deny it. An Egypt without Mr. Mubarak is a potential nightmare, even if long anticipated.
Ever since Anwar Sadat chose to realign Egypt with the United States in the early 1970s and begin the peace process with Israel, Egypt has been the linchpin of American strategy in the region, as well Israel's — the pillar of their efforts to forge a more stable and peaceful Middle East. Their relations with Egypt, however, have not been easy for either.
U.S.-Egyptian relations have been characterized by discordance no less than harmony. Mr. Mubarak has differed with American policy on Iraq, Iran, the peace process, Libya, domestic reform and more. Fundamentally, however, the relationship has held, and Egypt has played a constructive regional role....
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