In his most overt threat yet, Egyptian Vice President Omar Suleiman warned that public protests were “very dangerous for society and we can’t put up with this at all,” adding that if the protesters didn’t submit soon the “dark bats of the night” would resolve the situation for them.
Suleiman was appointed to head the government’s side on negotiations with the protesters, but talks have stalled amid reports that he is refusing to discuss anything except his own demands that the protesters stop protesting, and his public insistences that Egyptians are “not ready for democracy.”
Now the US hand-picked successor for aging dictator Hosni Mubarak is warning of a military coup if the protesters do not submit to his demands, which will inevitably spark the question “how will we know the difference.”
Indeed, the military dominates Egyptian society and is at least seen as somewhat less of a cartoonish supervillain than Mubarak or Suleiman. In that regard the threat may backfire, as Egyptians hoping for democracy may see an interim coup as preferable to an interim torturer.