There is plenty of history to suggest that Yemen's two faced president Ali Abdullah Saleh is going to pull another Bullwinkle on the Yemeni people and reneg on his promise to step down soon.
Like Bullwinkle who kept trying to pull a rabbit out of a top hat but kept failing, Salah has 3 times in the past year said he will step down only to go back on that promise at the 11th hour.
"I reject power and I will continue to reject it, and I will be leaving power in the coming days," Saleh said in a speech on state television.
Saleh has been clinging to his position while opposition and ruling party representatives cast about for a formula to see through a transition-of-power deal.
"I call on my supporters to persevere and to confront any challenge," Saleh said.
Protests against Saleh's rule have paralyzed Yemen, weakening government control over swathes of the country and fanning fears al Qaeda's regional wing may use the upheaval to expand its foothold near shipping routes through the Red Sea.
Saleh has thrice backed out of signing a Gulf-mediated power transition deal. The opposition says the government is holding up negotiations after Saleh's return from Saudi Arabia, where he had gone for treatment after a June assassination attempt.
The protests have gotten bloodier and the army has seen defections that have turned the protests against the regime into a virtual civil war. No one believes Salah when he says he will step down which is just as well. He's gone to the brink and pulled back so many times that it is assumed the only way he is going to leave office is fee first.