Mubarak is under questioning and he and his two sons are being transferred to a Cairo prison. Egypt's military rulers appear to be responding to escalating public pressure to see the former president behind bars.
The new Egypt is likely to emerge as more independent, diverging from US wishes in certain areas – such as reaching out to Iran. But the allies still have long-term common interests.
Egypt's protests have managed to energize a broad swath of Egyptians, but it's unclear if protesters can harness that energy for political change. Security was tight in Cairo Wednesday.
Former UN nuclear chief Mohamed ElBaradei is advocating democratic reforms that could allow him to run in the 2011 presidential election and break Hosni Mubarak's three-decade rule. But voters may not care enough to risk arrest and beatings.