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Tanks deploy to Egypt's presidential palace amid lull in deadly protests

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Pavement is broken up into makeshift missiles, Molotov cocktails are thrown, and fireworks are fired horizontally at the other side. At one point, a protester runs through the anti-Morsi crowd shooting in the air with a handgun. The pro-Morsi crowd appears to be firing teargas canisters, something usually reserved for the police forces....

There is nothing uplifting about the mood here tonight, which seems eons away from the jubilant crowds in Tahrir on Feb. 11, 2011, the night Mubarak stepped down. Just before the fighting started, the crowd beat up a salafi passerby (a conservative Muslim), despite his protestations that he was “not with the Brotherhood.” A minivan stuck in traffic was attacked on the suspicion that it was carrying Muslim Brotherhood supporters.

If any comparisons are made with the uprising that brought down Mubarak last year, it is with the infamous “Camel Day,” when Mubarak supporters and police attacked the peaceful pro-democracy protestors in Tahrir Square.

The Monitor noted that Essam al-Arian, head of the Muslim Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party, last night on Al Jazeera called the protests “the last battle of the revolution against the counterrevolution.”

A presidential aide told AFP that Morsi would address the current crisis in a speech later today, though no time was given. But as the Monitor's Dan Murphy wrote last night, there have been no indications from Morsi or the Brotherhood that they are backing down from plans to hold a referendum on the rushed, Islamist constitution on Dec. 15.

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