Today, our DNI James Clapper and CIA Director Leon Panetta, testified in front of the House Intelligence Committee about Egypt…
…“We are not clairvoyant,” said the director, James R. Clapper Jr., at a hearing of the House intelligence committee.
The intelligence community has faced criticism for failing to provide a clearer warning, or more timely descriptions, of the fast-moving developments in Egypt. [...]
But Mr. Clapper, and also Leon E. Panetta, the director of central intelligence, suggested that it would always be difficult to know precisely when a potentially critical situation would turn explosive — to know, for example, when a frustrated merchant in Tunisia would set himself afire, an event that indirectly fed into the Egyptian crisis.
“Specific triggers for how and when instability would lead to the collapse of various regimes cannot always be known or predicted,” Mr. Clapper said, at a hearing on worldwide threats to the United States. “What intelligence can do in most cases is reduce the uncertainty for decision makers, but not necessarily eliminate it.”
Mr. Panetta, in turn, said that last year nearly 400 intelligence reports were produced on problems in the region: “the regressive regimes, the economic and political instability, a stagnation, the lack of freedoms, the need for political reforms.” But he, too, said that intelligence agencies needed to do better in identifying triggering events.
‘Triggering Events’…? By then the horses have already bolted…!
Why can’t they see the forest for the trees…? I mean really…?
Panetta states the obvious root causes… “the regressive regimes, the economic and political instability, a stagnation, the lack of freedoms, the need for political reforms.” Yet, our only answers to those fundamental problems has been to send more American-built tanks and tear gas canisters…!
Now, Al Jazeera has an excellent shot of the Tahrir Square’s immediate response to Mubarak’s tone deaf speech, waving their shoes…
In parsing all the reports I’ve seen today, Mubarak has turned over some powers to VP Suleiman, such as this Huffpo headline states; Mubarak Won’t Leave Egypt But Passes Powers To Vice President
As today’s events have unfolded, I’d posted some enlightening articles…
Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak has stepped down and transferred his authority to the Egyptian Higher Council of the Armed Forces, a senior Egyptian official confirmed Thursday.
This body is comprised of the minister of defense, Field Marshal Hussein Tantawi along with the military’s chief of staff, the chief of operations, and commanders of the Army, Navy, Air Force and Air Defenses.
Statement of the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces:
“Based on the responsibility of the Armed Forces, and its commitment to protect the people, and to oversee their interests and security, and with a view to the safety of the nation and the citizenry, and of the achievements and properties of the great people of Egypt, and in affirmation and support for the legitimate demands of the people, the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces convened today, 10 February 2011, to consider developments to date, and decided to remain in continuous session to consider what procedures and measures that may be taken to protect the nation, and the achievements and aspirations of the great people of Egypt.”
Another link: Mubarak “definitely not going to step down”-info min
The Egyptian Ambassador to the US had this to say today…
Egyptian President Hosny Mubarak transferred ‘all of his power’ to Vice President Omar Suleiman, making him the ‘de facto’ leader of the country, the Egyptian ambassador in Washington said in an interview with CNN.
Mubarak ‘has transferred his authority to the vice president to undertake all presidential authority that is incorporated in the constitution,’ the ambassador, Sameh Shoukry, said Thursday.
‘The vice president is the de facto president,’ he said.
Shoukry said he had spoken with Suleiman and received clarification following Mubarak’s speech, in which he said power had been transferred to the vice president. But there was some confusion about how much authority Mubarak would retain.
When pressed by CNN’s Wolf Blitzer about whether Mubarak no longer had power, Shoukry replied: ‘That is certainly an interpretation you can make.’
Unfortunately, one does not need to be clairvoyant to agree with El Baradei’s tweet… “Egypt is about to explode. The military must get involved and take immediate action to save the country.”
Btw, why are we only hearing *crickets* from the Obama Administration on the latest developments…? Update: A WH response finally…!
Oops, never mind… US Stocks:Mubarak speech sparks late gain…