By Joan Murray

MIAMI (CBS4)- Thousands of Egyptians living in South Florida are watching events unfold a world away, and they’re holding their breath.

Usama el-a Baidy of Hallandale Beach has been glued to his television.

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“I’m happy and emotional,” el-a Baidy said. “This is exactly what we’ve been waiting for.  This is a message to every dictator or regime that are not listening, they better listen because at a point people say enough.”

When Egypt’s military said Thursday that it had stepped in to safeguard the country and assured protesters that President Hosni Mubarak will meet their demands, many interpreted this as a sign that Mubarak was stepping down.

Mubarak later said he was transferring authority to the vice president.

FIU professor of Politics and International Relations Russell Lucas says “the Egyptian military has a lot of close ties to the United states.  They receive a lot of foreign aid and it is likely President Obama has been urging them not to use violence on the protesters and to ensure there will be a transition.”

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But what kind of transition will happen no one is quite sure.

Jewish Americans are nervous what this could mean for Israel.

“Nobody knows.  America should take an active role because this will affect Israel,” said Yelena Lovkina.

William Arnold said, “I do feel a lot of Jewish Americans have the right to feel threatened.  I don’t know it will happen but it could.”

Usama who grew up in Egypt doubts extremism will take root.

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“I think Egypt needs a democrat moderate government where everyone can be listened to.”