Time is up – the Muslim Brotherhood is being removed from power. Does this mean
the “Arab Spring” is over? Are we witnessing the comeback of the nationalist
military dictatorship model that former president Hosni Mubarak represented?
Two years ago, the world was ecstatic over his fall, now there is praise for the return of military rule.
constitution has been suspended and the army is to announce a road map and
oversee a transitional period and elections.
Muslim Brotherhood leaders
remained defiant. Gehad El-Haddad, a senior political adviser for the
Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice Party, asked on Twitter late Wednesday night:
“Egypt enters another military coup cycle. Will the [people] of Egypt take it.
Again!!” The question for the US and Europe is how to react. Will they support
the coup or will they condemn it because it overran a democratic government? If
the army does not remain steadfast, it could leave enough room for the Muslim
Brotherhood to wage a violent uprising or protests. If this happens, the country
will move toward economic ruin, and become paralyzed in some kind of civil
What if, after the coup, the economy crashes, and then the Muslim
Brotherhood brings its supporters to the streets and fills Tahrir Square again?
David P. Goldman reports at PJ Media that we have now reached the worst-case
scenario: “chaos in politics, violence in the streets, complete cessation of
tourism, and economic breakdown.”
Goldman quotes statistics from the
World Health Organization in 2011 stating that around 20 percent of Egyptians
suffer malnutrition. He goes on to predict that a military regime would probably
do a better job of dealing with the economic issue because it would be more
likely to receive aid from the Gulf states, besides Qatar, which “might decide
to provide funding for a military regime that suppressed the Muslim
The Gulf states are status quo powers for the most part
(except Qatar) and strongly fear any revolutionary movements, and for that
reason the Muslim Brotherhood, al-Qaida, and Shi’ite Iran should be controlled
However, it is interesting that the Gulf states have no
problem with supporting the Sunni Islamists fighting far away or against
Shi’ites. For example, in Syria they are funding the Islamist-dominated
The spiraling economic disaster combined with what may be a
Muslim Brotherhood struggle against the military – possibly including terrorism,
urban warfare, assassinations and mass protests – may be difficult to manage
even with billions of aid money. Qatar already gave Morsi’s regime $5 billion
and it only served to postpone a much worse situation.
Max Singer of the
Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies (BESA) and a co-founder of the Hudson
Institute told The Jerusalem Post, “I never believed in the Arab Spring,” so he
does not see it as being reversed.
The Brotherhood, he said, rejects
democracy, as it does not believe in free speech or freedom to organize, for
Democracy is not just about holding an election, he
Israel and Egypt “are better off with the army and democrats than
with the Islamists,” said Singer, warning that there still will remain problems
with the army and the opposition, “but the Islamists are a more dangerous
Asked about what the coup could mean for US policy, he responded
that President Barack Obama has taken the position that the Brotherhood is not
the enemy. This is a big mistake, Singer said.
Zvi Mazel, who served as Israel’s sixth ambassador to Egypt and who is a contributor to the Post, told the Post that the army worked with the protesters to fix the revolution. Dialogue between the Brotherhood and the opposition became impossible because Morsi refused to cooperate, wishing to push his party’s agenda.
“The Muslim Brotherood are in shock – they cannot believe it,” said Mazel adding that in time the Islamists will “wake up and there may be violence.” The Islamists now will begin planning for a struggle to return to power, he asserted.