Egypt: Mubarak speaks, won't run again, elections in September


[Yes, they've Godwin'ed Egypt: A man carries a picture depicting Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak as Adolf Hitler during a protest in Cairo January 31, 2011. Mubarak overhauled his government on Monday to try to defuse a popular uprising against his 30-year rule but angry protesters rejected the changes and said he must surrender power. REUTERS/Goran Tomasevic ]

On the 8th day of increasingly massive protests in Egypt calling for the ouster of Hosni Mubarak, the Egyptian president has just addressed the nation and the world: he will not run for presidency again, and will "speed up" elections scheduled months from now.

How the Egyptian people react to this is yet to be seen, but as I type this post, the endless ocean of demonstrators in Cairo's Tahrir Square —who were heckling him during the speech—don't seem satisfied: "We're not leaving today, we're not leaving Wednesday, we're not leaving Thursday," the crowd is chanting. They won't leave, in other words, until Mubarak leaves.

"I will die in the land of Egypt," said the Egyptian president during his address, meaning he won't flee the country, as Tunisian president Ben Ali did after popular revolt there.

Fake Hosni Mubarak on Twitter breaks it down for us: "Read between the lines: I will steal as much as I can in the few months I have left as president."

Al Jazeera item on speech here. Nick Kristof's analysis here: "Clueless in Cairo."

Nothing in Mubarak's speech about unlocking the clampdown on press (such as Al Jazeera), or turning on communications again: internet and mobile remain down for nearly all users throughout the country.