The New York Times has reported that the Obama administration is discussing a proposal with Egyptian officials for President Hosni Mubarak to step down immediately and hand over power to Vice President Omar Suleiman. Under this proposal, Suleiman would run a transitional government until elections are held later this year. Before being appointed to the vice presidency last week, Suleiman was the coordinator of the CIA's extraordinary rendition program.
Mark Landler, diplomatic correspondent for The New York Times explains the backroom dealings of Washington and Egypt. Shibley Telhami, Anwar Sadat professor for peace and development at the University of Maryland contextualizes this move.