Nobody said it better than Hosni Mubarak: "Our eventual goal is to

create an equal society, not a society of privileges and class

distinctions. Social justice is the first rule for peace and stability

in society." But that was in November 1981, a few weeks after he

had become president of Egypt.

Over the next 30 years, Mubarak became a symbol not of equality

but of a deep corruption - financial, political and cultural - that

enveloped Egypt and other countries in the Middle East. He grew

arrogant like a king, fancying that he could pass on his dynasty to

his son; he ignored advice for reform, doing just enough to keep

critics at bay; he shamelessly played upon Western fears of

Islamic radicalism.