Short Bio of Hosni Mubarak
Hosni Mubarak is the current President of Egypt. He was appointed Vice-President in 1975, by President Anwar Al Sadat. He became Egypt’s President in October 1981 after Sadat’s assassination. He has since been reelected several times. Mubarak’s presidency has been characterized by excellent diplomatic relations with the United States.
On January 6, 2009, and after diplomatic discussions with French president Nicolas Sarkozy, Mubarak proposed a peace plan to halt the late 2008—early 2009 Israeli attack on the Gaza Strip.1 However, on the same day, the Israeli newspaper Haaretz published a claim that Mubarak had told a closed conference of European Union diplomats that Hamas must “not be allowed to get the upper hand.”2 Although Egypt was quick to issue a denial, it is unclear what effect this will have on diplomatic efforts over the next few days.3 4
Mubarak was born on May 4, 1928 in the village of Kafr El-Meselha in Egypt’s Al Monufiyah Governorate. His father was employed by the legal department of the province and owned a small plot of land. He had hoped to see his attend the Cairo University, Mubarak instead choose a military career.
Upon the completion of high school Mubarak entered the Egyptian Military Academy, in 1949 he graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Military Science. He then attended the Egyptian Air Force Academy, earning an additional Bachelor’s Degree in Aviation Sciences. In 1959, at age 31, he was appointed a base commander and sent to Russia for flight training. In 1964 Mubarak returned to Russia as the leader of Egypt’s military delegation. In 1973 he was promoted to Commander of the Egpytian Air Force and appointed as a Deputy Defense Minister.
In 1975 Anwar Sadat appointed Mubarak to be his Vice President. In 1978 he was appointed to the position of Vice Chairman of the National Democratic Party (NDP). After the assassination of Sadat in 1981 Mubarak became President and Chairman of the NDP. He has since been re-elected President in five successive elections.
In the course of his Presidency Mubarak has survived numerous assassination attempts. In 2007 his administration was criticized for the lack of Egyptian Copts (Christians) in governmental capacities. Mubarak recently extended Egypt’s state of emergency, which had been in effect since the assassination of Anwar Sadat.
Recently Egypt’s “poor” human rights record has been dead center in the spotlight of international opinion. In the United States the massive amounts of humanitarian and military aid given to Egypt has come into question in both houses of Congress. Also being questioned are documented cases of torture, brutality, and “disappearing” prisoners.