Update 22:12: listened to Mubarak’s speech on Al Jazeera English. He is not leaving, and it doesn’t seem like he’s offering anything new that is significant. The crowd in Tahrir Square definitely did not appreciate it, very angry response from there. It remains to be seen what the army and other parties will do going forward; quite a confusing situation in Egypt right now with several conflicting signals.
Following many rapid events in Egypt, CNN reports on their home page:
Strong likelihood Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak will resign Thursday night, CIA Director Leon Panetta tells Congress.
This by itself may not satisfy protesters’ increasing demands, such as ones reported by Al Jazeera as follows:
They want a one-year transitional period before full parliamentary elections – during which a three-person presidential council should run the country while a panel of experts write a new, permanent constitution – taking advice from opposition groups and senior, high-profile Egyptians, including the Muslim Brotherhood.
Some reports by Al Jazeera suggest a resignation might be accompanied by some set of actions, but in any case, if Mubarak steps down now it would certainly be of great symbolic value for the protesters’ interests. I would say it would no longer be a matter of if, but when, the protesters would see their efforts pay off. That is hardly to say that the journey is over, though.