It had been promised for several weeks, and when it came Friday’s protest against Egypt’s new president Mohamed Mursi led to violent clashes between protesters and supporters of the islamist leader.
Some wielded batons and charged the rival camp, and the air was full of flying stones. Tahrir square, the crucible of the Egyptian revolution, proved to be the flashpoint.
“I don’t want to bring Mursi down. I just want someone to give me work, someone who will help me so that I can graduate from University,” said a protester.
But even that attitude was too much for supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood, who have waited for this chance of power for decades.
“Why aren’t they patient? Mursi’s only been in power for two months, and he’s already removed the head of the armed forces, so he is cleaning up the country but one step at a time,” said one woman.
But time is of the essence if Egypt is to revive its slumped economy, already unable to absorb the ranks of young workers Egypt’s big population produces every year, even before the revolutionary chaos.