Sudan: Bashir Out, Generals In, What Next?

Thirty years in power ended after just three months of protests yesterday for Sudanese strongman Omar Bashir.

The army – faced with growing demonstrations and an image of defiance that suddenly went viral around the world – arrested Bashir and imposed a state of emergency. Defense Minister Awad Ibn Ouf has said elections will be held in two years.

Bashir's ouster comes just a week after the nearly incapacitated president of Algeria, Abdelaziz Bouteflika, resigned under pressure from his own generals, following several weeks of mass protests. In his case, it ended a 20-year run in power.

Autocrats lose, but will democracy win? Both men were ousted after street demonstrations reached a point that the military chose to side with the protesters rather than gun them down.


But the generals now control what happens next in both countries, and there is no guarantee that they'll be willing to relinquish control to genuinely accountable civilian governments.

If they don't, it could spell trouble. While economic issues are what initially put millions of young Algerians and Sudanese on the streets over the past few months, their demands have since expanded to include political change and transparency. Popular discontent could persist in both countries if those demands aren't fulfilled.

Then again, the generals may look to Egypt, where the army skillfully used popular demands for change to oust a long-standing dictator, as well as the democratically elected leader who came to power after him. Eight years after the Arab Spring, the country is now under the control of a deeply authoritarian regime.

The upshot: It's one thing for the men with guns to side with the streets against suddenly vulnerable leaders – but would they be willing to side with protesters against… themselves?

Democrats have the power to impeach Donald Trump.

After all, impeachment simply requires a majority vote of the House of Representatives, and Democrats hold 235 seats to just 199 for Republicans.

Of course, impeaching the president is only the first step in removing him from office. It's merely an indictment, which then forces a trial in the Senate. Only a two-thirds supermajority vote (67 of 100 senators) can oust the president from the White House. Just two US presidents (Andrew Johnson in 1868 and Bill Clinton in 1998) have been impeached. Neither was convicted by the Senate.

Many Democrats, including two of the party's presidential candidates, argue the Mueller Report and other sources of information offer ample evidence that President Trump has committed "high crimes and misdemeanors," the standard for removal from office under Article Two of the US Constitution. But the impeachment question has provoked intense debate within the Democratic Party.

Here are the strongest arguments on both sides of the Democratic Party's debate.

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Should Sri Lanka have blocked social media following the terror attacks?

That's a hard one. Misinformation spreads on social media and there's an instinct to say, "Wait, stop it!" But a lot of useful information also spreads and people get in touch with each other. So I would say no they should not have blocked it.

Are Tesla cars at risk of exploding?

There was one video from China of a parked Tesla exploding. I don't think you really have to worry about it though. I am curious to know what that video was really about.

Why do tech companies hate the census citizenship question?

Because if you ask people whether they're citizens. A lot of people will answer and you'll get bad data and the card companies need to know where they set up their operations. Good data matter to Silicon Valley.

What happened during the Space X Crew Dragon accident?

We don't know this one for sure either but one of the engines in a SpaceX test exploded. No one was hurt. Let's hope it was something to do with the way it was set up - not something deep and systematic.


And go deeper on topics like cybersecurity and artificial intelligence at Microsoft Today in Technology.

What's troubling you today? A revisionary new talk show hosted by Vladimir Putin offers real solutions to your everyday problems.

Crises create opportunities. That's the story of European politics over the past decade, and Spain offers an especially interesting case in point.

On Sunday, Spanish voters will go to the polls in the country's third national election in less than four years. Gone are the days when just two parties (center-right and center-left) dominated Spain's national political landscape. As in other EU countries, the economic spiral and resulting demand for austerity triggered by Europe's sovereign debt crisis, and then a tidal wave of migrants from North Africa and the Middle East, have boosted new parties and players. Catalan separatists have added to Spain's political turmoil.

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