Following up on yesterday’s announcement by President Mubarak, Egyptian state television said today that Mubarak’s cabinet has resigned. It announced further that aviation minister Ahmed Shafiq has been named as the new Prime Minister, while Mubarak has also, for the first time, appointed a Vice President: Omar Suleiman, the head of military intelligence and a Mubarak confidante. This is no youth movement; Suleiman is 74 years old, and today’s announcements are consistent with the conventional wisdom that the Egyptian military remains firmly in control. With respect to Suleiman, this may be noteworthy:
As Egypt’s intelligence chief, Suleiman was in charge of the country’s most important political security files, and was the mastermind behind the fragmentation of Islamist groups who led the uprising against the state in the 1990s.