Marina Ottaway is a senior scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars.
If the regime does not allow for a more normal political life in Egypt, the country is likely to repeat another wretched cycle of political stagnation, sudden upheaval, fear and authoritarianism.
And the fragmentation of Iraq's political parties isn't helping.
If the Islamists and the rest can make a deal, Tunisia could be an Arab Spring success story. If they can't, decline awaits.
The military, the Islamists, the revolutionaries and Mubarak's old buddies lock horns.
Possibilities and hopes are diverging as protests and military threats rock Cairo.
With the high court ruling the upper house and the constituent assembly are illegal, Egypt may have no lawful way forward.
All of Mubarak's opponents were unprepared for the aftermath of his departure, and they still have a lot of learning to do. There's not much outsiders can do to help.
Egypt's Islamist majority and secular minority are fighting a battle for dominion over the state.
Egypt's old guard won this round, but there will be more to follow.
Tunisia may not be riding toward a bright dawn of democratic bliss, but its example is worth emulating nonetheless.
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