Mubarak, sons detained

Ousted Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak and his two sons have been put under detention pending an investigation over corruption allegations. Mubarak is being detained in his hospital room where he is being monitored for a “heart crisis.”  Boston University international relations professors Augustus Richard Norton and Charles Dunbar offer the following comments:

Augustus Richard Norton is a Middle East specialist, author of “Hezbollah: A Short History,” an advisor to the Baker-Hamilton Iraq Study group, and director of the BU Institute for Iraqi Studies:

“This is an important development, particularly during a period when the military has been showing less tolerance for demonstrators and critics.

“Among the trio being questioned, it is the son ‘Alaa who may be the most vulnerable.  He is notorious in Egypt for inserting himself as a silent and unwanted partner in a number of businesses.

“It remains to be seen how far the public prosecutor will go with the investigation, but if the immunity of Egyptian autocrats and their families is eroded then this really would be revolutionary.”

Contact  617-353-7808,, Twitter @arnorton

Charles Dunbar, who in four decades as a diplomat, served as a U.N. Secretary-General Special Representative, head of the U.S. Embassy in Kabul during the Soviet occupation, and was U.S. ambassador to Qatar and Yemen:

“Those who threw Mr. Mubarak et filii from the sleigh may be a bit concerned as to how things will go for them on judgment day. It might have been better to leave the fate of the Mubarak family’s over-achievement to a popularly elected government.”

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