After Sunday's massive protests against Egypt's President Morsi it was not surprising that the Army stepped in yesterday afternoon and told the two sides to reach an agreement on an inclusive road map within 48 hours. It was surprising, however, that the language of the Army's demand seemed favourable to the protestors rather than to a President who was elected only one year ago.
Sunday's huge demonstrations were described as glorious and their participants praised for their peaceful and civilised manner.
(Perhaps the Army turned a blind eye to the demonstrators who ransacked the Muslim Brotherhood headquarters.)
Most significantly, the Army told the politicians to reply to the calls of the protestors to step down or to be much more sensitive to other political interests -- including, presumably, the new party Tamored (Rebel) which I mentioned in this space on Saturday as being behind the anti-Morsi petition with millions of signatures.
Yesterday it issued a demand for Morsi to resign by today or face renewed street protests.
The Army's action was probably necessary as an interim measure but its requirement for all steps necessary for the road map to be implemented to be agreed within 48 hours was unreal and will probably have to be extended.
Mohamed Morsi is in a difficult and perhaps dangerous situation but will find it hard to ignore or try to dispute the Army's intervention.