It's another example of the parallel realities that have formed in Egypt since the uprising last year. Tens of thousands are marching today on Cairo's Tahrir Square, to call an end to military rule following the first anniversary of the revolt on Jan. 25, 2012, and that saw hundreds of thousands demonstrate.
At the same time, Gallup, a leading public opinion research firm, released a survey that says 82 percent of Egyptians believe the ruling military council will handover power to a civilian government by the end of Jun. 2012.
According to the poll:
88% of Egyptians still express confidence in the military generally and 89% are confident in the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF) specifically. Still, the majority (63%) think it would be bad for the military to remain involved in politics after the presidential election.
They are figures many activists find difficult to reconcile with the thousands that have turned out to protest the ruling junta in recent days - and even as far back as Nov. 2011.
At Cairo's massive demonstration on Jan. 25, 2012 - quite possibly the biggest Egypt's ever seen - few if any outside the Muslim Brotherhood, which now leads parliament, were celebrating the ouster of President Hosni Mubarak. The chants were decidedly anti-SCAF, and both young and old were there to call for the transfer of power.
"We're here because nothing has changed since our revolution," said Sohaya Suleiman, an older veiled woman who was resting after having marched from an area in north Cairo to Tahrir Square on Wednesday. "I will continue coming here until we no longer have a military government. If we are ordered to sit, we will sit."
Friday's protests promised to be nearly as large, with a myriad of marches crisscrossing Cairo's urban sprawl, some amassing in Tahrir and others targeting the ministry of defense and the building that houses the government-run television.
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The activists may still have large quarter of support. According to Gallup:
Nearly 9 in 10 Egyptians say delaying the presidential election, expected to take place before June 30, 2012, would be a bad thing for their country. This places significant pressure on the military leadership of the country to secure free, fair, and timely elections.