The recent events throughout Egypt are problematic for the US government as it exposes the hypocrisy of the rhetoric of being a shining light for democracy and free markets, and the reality of geopolitics. But the events also highlights critical issues in the social sciences about the theory of social change and our ability to engage in predictions of such events.
The Charles Tilly thesis about "dual power" is one theory of revolution, but another theory of revolution that has intrigued me from my first reading is that of Timur Kuran's and his challenge that revolutions defy prediction due to the phenomena of preference falsification. In the Tilly rendition, if you specify the existing conditions and claims to power, one can predict revolutionary action; but in the Kuran version knowledge of the pre-existing conditions would not enable reliable prediction.
Check out Kuran's classic paper, "Sparks and Prairie Fires." Would you argue that what we are witnessing is a consequence of immiseration, dual power, or a sudden shift in preference revelation?