Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Morsi in Hiding, Massive Celebrations in Cairo

Mike L.



Morsi rejects takeover; whereabouts unknown

By Abigail Hauslohner, William Booth and Sharaf al-Hourani in the Washington Post.
CAIRO — The Egyptian military removed President Mohamed Morsi from power Wednesday and suspended the constitution in moves it said were aimed at resolving the country’s debilitating political crisis. 
 In a televised address to the nation after a meeting with a group of civilian political and religious leaders, the head of the powerful armed forces, Gen. Abdel Fatah al-Sissi, said the chief of Egypt’s constitutional court “will assume the presidency” on an interim basis until a new presidential election is held. Sissi said the interim president — Adly Mansour, Egypt’s top judicial authority — will have the right to declare laws during the transitional period. 
The announcement came as huge crowds of pro- and anti-government protesters massed in the streets of Cairo and the army deployed armored vehicles. In the afternoon, a top adviser to the embattled Morsi had declared that a military coup was underway and warned that “considerable bloodshed” could ensue.
I think those of us who were rather skeptical of the "Arab Spring" can probably rest assured that our skepticism was well-founded.

Who knows what will happen in the future viz-a-viz Egypt, but one thing is certain, the anti-Islamist liberals - that Obama snubbed - are perhaps considerably more powerful than most of us imagined and they are, for the moment, aligned with the Egyptian military.
Sissi said “peaceful protests” could continue, but he warned that the military would respond with “strength and determination” to any outbreaks of violence.

The announcement sparked cheers and celebration among Morsi opponents packed into Cairo’s Tahrir Square...

But in eastern Cairo, supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood, an entrenched Islamist movement that backs Morsi, erupted in angry chants following Sissi’s speech, and stones started flying. The Brotherhood’s two main political channels immediately vanished from the airwaves.

Fearing a further security breakdown, the U.S. Embassy in Cairo on Wednesday ordered the mandatory evacuation of all personnel deemed nonessential.
I don't want to make too much of this because it seems to me that it is a reset to the status quo ante, but the status quo ante in Egypt is superior to an Egypt with an Islamist government.

As people who care about Israel we are allowed to take sides in democratic elections.  It's hard to know just how democratic the Egyptian elections were a year ago, given the fact that reputable media reported that Copts were sometimes prevented from voting at the point of a rifle.

And while I would not put much faith in the good will of either the Egyptian people or the Egyptian military toward either the Jewish people or the Jewish State, I think that it is hugely important that political Islam be confronted and stopped wherever it can be.

How it came to be that we have an American president that supports political Islam within such a short time after 9/11 is a question that scholars will engage themselves in untangling for decades.  In the mean time, I find it heartening that Egyptian society seems to have rejected the movement that Obama supported.

This is an exceedingly important moment if it does, in fact, lead to the ouster of the Muslim Brotherhood.  Egypt is probably the single most significant country - aside from Israel - in that part of the world.  The fact that they have fought off political Islam is a terrible blow to that movement and says good things about the Egyptians.

Let's hope for a liberal Egyptian democracy in the future, but let us never accept a radical Jihadi Egyptian "democracy."

Hopefully we've seen the last of Morsi.


6 comments:

  1. I'm glad he's gone but let's remember that a lot of the criticism of him is that he is a tool of the US and Israel. That's how freaking stupid some Egyptians are. Remember ultra liberal Egyptian Sandmonkey's remarks a few years ago:

    "But then I rememebrd that we- the majority of us anyway- don't want peace with Israel, and are not interested in any real dialogue with them. We weren't then and we are not now. The Entire peace process has always been about getting the land back, not establishing better relations. Even when we do get the land back, it's not enough. People in Egypt lament daily the Camp David treaty that prevents us from fighting.

    In Gaza they never stopped trying to attack Israel. In Lebanon Hezbollah continued attacking even after the Israeli withdrawel. And the people- the majority of the arab population- support it. Very few of us are really interested in having any lasting Peace or co-existance. I mean, if our left is asking for war, what do you think the rest of the population is thinking?

    I think that the Israeli want peace with us because they don't want their lives disrupted. They don't want to have the IDF soldiers fighting in Gaza, rockets coming into their towns from Hamas or having to go to wars against Hezbollah to get their soldiers back. I think they want peace because they want their peace of mind. They view us as if we were a headache. We view them as if they are a cancer."

    With "liberals," like that......

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  2. The secularists and liberals in Egypt are as virulently anti-Semitic and anti-Israel as the Islamists.

    We're not going to be disappointed on that score. On the other hand, the prospects of Egypt becoming like Iran - a bastion of Islamic fanaticism and violence are not good for Egypt and the world.

    The best thing to come out of today's events is that it resets Egypt's future political direction. Whether it will truly fulfill the hopes of the "Arab Spring" remains to be seen.

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  3. The Democracy is dead. Long live the NEXT Democracy. and the next and the next etc etc etc.

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  4. Egypt zero foreign credit, is several billion in arrears on current accounts just for basics like food and fuel. Last count they had maybe 75-79 days of fuel left with few prospects of getting any more. Food subsidies which go to more than 40% of the population increased in price 75% recently because of limited supply. Cooking oil, food, diesel, propane, butane are all in short supply. Gasoline is nearly non existent. Large chunks of their water supply have broken down because regional governors stole the money needed to maintain them. Morsi fired 24 of them a few months back and replaced them with political and religious cronies. Where not even talking about long term debt or even something as toxic as capitalized credit. We're talking about cash on hand to pay people to buy things to keep the country running. Huge gobs of private capital fled the country months ago. the Egyptian stock exchange's website is now offline, could be a temporary glitch, who knows?

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    1. Rebuilding Egypt is a huge job. The Egyptians unfortunately are not Germans - they lack self-discipline and the work ethic. Without honesty and a willingness to accept responsibility, nothing will change. All the unrest in Egypt won't fix what's wrong with the country.

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  5. This is a huge moment in the history of the region because it represents the staggering, perhaps haltering, of political Islam in the Middle East after the bogus "Arab Spring."

    I think that we should be cheering this as long as the Muslim Brotherhood remains out of executive power in Egypt.

    This is like if the Islamists had been driven out of power in Iran shortly after 1979.

    This is a very big deal... if it lasts.

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