The military in Egypt is not giving up power lightly and the protestors in Tahrir Square and beyond have a difficult task to keep the momentum going on their Arab revolution.
The recent horrendous scenes of brutality by the security forces against the protesters, suggests a renewed confidence within the military command to tighten its grip on the country, without too much protest from the rest of the population who want to get on with their daily lives and seem to be tiring of the call to protest.
For now, the International community is fixated on Syria and more worried about the rise of Islamic groups across the region than the rights of any pro-democracy movement. The truth is that it suited the West to have Mubarak in Egypt and with the military old-guard still holding the reins of power, it is better the devil you know.
The Muslim Brotherhood is not trusted by the West to maintain its benign stance on western-style democracy and it has its detractors within Egypt itself, which could lead to internal warfare should the military go-ahead and hand over to a civilian government next year.
The awful scenes of the woman protester been beaten and stripped half-naked for the whole world to see, angered conservative Egyptians. But will this act of brutality by the security forces, cower the population into submission or rouse them into futher protest? Sadly, the military is already betting on the former and one suspects Western powers won't be too unhappy with that outcome, even if what is said is the complete opposite.