The second revolution has, supposedly, come to Egypt. Over the past twelve days, tens of thousands of Egyptians have gathered in Tahrir Square to demand that the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF) cede power to a civilian-led National Salvation Government. Egyptian security forces responded by killing at least 40 people, wounding more than 1,000, and blanketing parts of downtown Cairo with weapons-grade tear gas. The ugly scenes recall the earliest days of the mass uprising in January and February, the first revolution, which ended Hosni Mubarak’s reign. But this second revolution has one major problem: so long as Egyptians avoid Tahrir Square, it is somewhat easy to ignore.

The sit-in began on November 18, when an Islamist-led mass demonstration withdrew from Tahrir Square, leaving behind a handful of protesters, including family members of people killed during the first revolution. When Central Security Forces violently dispersed this small sit-in, thousands of

This article is part of our premium archives.

To continue reading and get full access to our entire archive, you must subscribe.

Subscribe
  • ERIC TRAGER is the Ira Weiner Fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy.
  • More By Eric Trager