Nightly News | May 23, 2012
>>> now to a first in the arab world and day that could set the course for egypt for years to come. after all of the violence and revolution we witnessed there for ourselves over a year ago now, this was the day that egyptians wept to the poles in a history making presidential election . our chief foreign correspondent richard engle is back in cairo tonight. good evic.
>> good evening, brianer what a day it's been. for the last 5,000 years. egypt was ruled by pharaohs and consultants, kings and military commanders. now that's starting to change. egyptians by the million turned out to make history.
>> freedom and to feel that we are human for the first time.
>> mostly, it was peaceful as voters lined up in cairo to choose from among five leading candidates. a socialist, two islamists with tied to the long banned muslim brotherhood and two with ties to former presidential mubarak. it wasn't always certainly this day would come. last year in tahrir square, millions demanded democracy. today, the protesters are gone. instead, tahrir is full of flags and campaign posters, as egyptians are practicing the rights they fought and died in this square to achieve. but the election will be decided in villages like this, outside cairo . many egyptians live in the countryside, mostly in poverty. this is the heartland. like all of egypt , it's divided. it's a choice between continuity and a new direction under islam islamisl islamic leadership that could see them turn away from pro american policies. we saw muslim brotherhood activists helping voters find their names on ballot lists. i support the muslim brotherhead because it has long said that islam is the solution, he says. not everyone agrees. the campaign has been vigorous. mass rallies, televised debates. in the overwhelmingly muslim country , islamic candidates have a big advantage, the pulpit. at a recent campaign event, a cleric rallies the crowd. they cheer, the people want islamic law . that could mean big changes across the middle east . the muslim brotherhood disagrees with u.s. paul oshere and has threatened to change or even tear up egypt 's peace treaty with izraem, forged four deades decadeses guo by jimmy carter .
>> they know that peace forige want and israel is crucial to their people and their future. they gave me the assurance that the peace agreement with israel would remain in tact.
>> ige want is as a crosis roads as people here for the first time chose their own future. voting continues tomorrow. no candidate is expected to win an outright majority, so there will like laly be a run off next month.
>> richard, thanks, as always.