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Rule 2. Ruling groups aren't monolithic, and splits can be important.
There are many anti-government players in Egypt, those seeking secular reform as well as those wanting some form of an Islamic fundamentalist outcome. But those who already inhabit the key institutions, such as the army and government, are groups whose support must be wooed.
In Iran, Mousavi can trace his revolutionary roots back to 1979 when Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini consolidated his power after the shah was forced to flee Tehran. Mousavi eventually rose through the government to become prime minister. There have been reports that he and the current supreme ruler, Khamenei, have clashed over the years. But now that Mousavi is the face of reform, perhaps he can count on some support from within the ruling group.
Such support is always a plus, as seen in the Philippines. People had been fighting against the despotic rule of Ferdinand Marcos for years, until the situation became more urgent in the 1980s.
Corazon Aquino became the widow of Sen. Benigno Aquino Jr. when he was assassinated on his return from exile on Aug. 21, 1983. She was drafted to run against Marcos in the 1986 snap presidential elections. Marcos claimed victory amid the usual reports of electoral fraud.
It was on Feb. 22, 1986, that two Marcos allies, Defense Minister Juan Ponce Enrile and Lt. Gen. Fidel V. Ramos, defected. Corazon Aquino returned to Manila and joined the growing crowds. Three days later, Corazon Aquino and Marcos both took the presidential oath of office. By nightfall, Marcos was forced to flee into exile.
Photo: Confetti rains down on Filipino opposition candidate Corazon Aquino and her running mate, Salvador Laurel, as their motorcade crawls through a crowd packing the streets of Naga City, Philippines, in 1986.
January 10, 1986