INTERVIEW: Beginnings of a transformation, democracy protests bring down Mubarak

By Ryan Nobles - bio | email
Posted by Terry Alexander - email

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - The world continues to watch as the future of the largest Arabic country in the world remains in doubt. Today Egypt's President Hosni Mubarak finally relinquished power and has left the capitol. This is what it looks like there in the country right now. The next few days could have a critical impact on the rest the Arab world. Dr. Joshua Walker is professor at the University of Richmond and an expert on international affairs. Dr. Walker, thank you for being here.

Dr. Joshua Walker:
Thank you so much for having me.

Ryan Nobles: First, from what you can tell, and maybe no one really knows the answer to this question, but who is in power in Egypt right now?

Dr. Joshua Walker:
It's hard to tell what individual leader is in power right now, but it seems pretty clear that the Egyptian military has taken over here and Egypt's military has an interesting delicate balance between trying to show it's part of the protest in terms of being with the Egyptian people and trying to maintain rule of order and what we saw just today in terms of Mubarak leaving seems to have the hand print of the military all over it.

Ryan Nobles: It seems that the world has embraced this revolution that is seems "of the people." is it more complex than that? Is this a genuine effort by people just fighting for democracy or are they fighting for something else?

Dr. Joshua Walker:
I think every revolution is probably more, complex, but I think in terms of tag line, the entire international community, with the exception of specific states, Israel not as excited about what they're seeing and a lot of other Arab regimes not excited, but the U.S. president has jumped on board, a lot of world leaders jump on board and it seems clear the revolution has painted as a genuine work. The question is how do we work from that to an actual workable state?

Ryan Nobles: The Obama administration is very concerned about this transition of power. How could this new leader, whoever it may be, really complicate or make things easier for the United States government in terms of their relationship with the Middle East?

Dr. Joshua Walker:
I think what's going to watch is exactly how the Muslim Brotherhood plays into the story. Is it going to have a large disproportionate influence in terms of ideology which will complicate our interests in the region, or will they keep the peace that's been there between Israel and Egypt? I think the Egypt military is in charge will somebody who's moderate who will work with the U.S. but also work with the Egyptians to figure out how they can continue to express their legitimate interests in the region.

Ryan Nobles: Do you foresee some sort of theocracy in charge here or a legitimate democracy that we're accustomed to here in the U.S.

Dr. Joshua Walker:
I don't see an Iran but not also an America happening over night. It took us over 125 years to get here and all we can do is wish the best for the Egyptian people but today is a momentous day for sure.

Ryan Nobles: Incredible insight. Thank you for being here.

Dr. Joshua Walker:
Thank you.

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