What now? The sight of thousands of protesters back in Tahrir Square in Cairo, along with thousands of others around the country in Alexandria and Suez, facing the guns of the army and bleeding in the streets, has obviously sparked recollections of the early days of the Egyptian revolution at the start of the year. Are these new clashes in Tahrir Square, now entering their fourth day, a bump on the road to next week's elections - or the start of a shift in Egypt's fluid politics?
It is too early to tell. But what is certain is that these are not baseless demonstrations - the Egyptians protesting around the country are defending an essential tenet of the uprising that ousted President Hosni Mubarak. The generals who now rule Egypt would be wise to listen to the language of Tahrir, or they may find themselves further on the wrong side of the revolution.