The Region: What happened in Egypt?
Within a year, Egypt will be fundamentally transformed. Irretrievably transformed.
Egyptian protesters on tank Photo: MELANIE LIDMAN
A short history of democracy in Egypt. In February 2011 the Mubarak regime
fell. There was going to be a parliament elected in Egypt. The parliament was
elected. Its election was invalidated. Today there is no parliament in
The Muslim Brotherhood said it would want to run one-third of the
candidates for seats. Then they ran one-half. Then they ran all. Then they said
they would not run a president. Then they did and elected a
president. And they and the Salafists elected 70 percent of the
parliament. But now there is no parliament.
The parliament was going to
pick a constituent assembly to write a Constitution. But now there is no
Constitution. There are no restrictions on presidential powers.
there was a Supreme Council of the Armed Forces, but that was supposed to
restrain the Muslim Brotherhood president. And it was supposed to be
restrained by the Egypt-Israel peace treaty and by the hope of getting US
military aid. But the president got rid of it and fired the two top people and
put in his own generals. And there is no restraint.
And we were told that
the Egyptian government had promised to adhere to the Egypt-Israel peace treaty.
But when it wished the regime simply violated the treaty and sent forces into
the eastern Sinai. And it announced an alliance with Hamas, which openly
declared its desire to go to war with Israel and destroy it. And Cairo did not
The Egyptian regime did more economic damage to Israel by
violating its contract on natural gas shipments than any other Arab regime in
the history of the country, because Israel had to spend billions of dollars
replacing that lost fuel. That is why Israeli taxes are going up and social
spending must decline. The US government did not lift a finger to
The entire Israeli strategic plan has had to be altered to add an
entire new defensive front along the border with Egypt. New units will be
organized; new fences built; new equipment ordered and paid for.
Eddin Ibrahim, arguably the Arab world’s leading sociologist and certainly the
leading advocate of liberal-Islamist alliance against the old Arab military
regimes has now totally changed sides, warning that the Islamists want to hijack
power and establish dictatorships. He pleads for Westerners to wake
Egyptian President Mohamed Morsy has now named the heads of the main
Egyptian newspapers, radio stations and television networks. They include
sleazeballs that sold out to the Mubarak regime and will do whatever he tells
them. The first round-ups have begun of reporters who are to bold and honest in
their investigations. The walls are closing in.
Soon the generals will be
replaced; soon the judges will be replaced, and so too will the diplomats. In
other words, the internal and external bureaucracy of Egypt’s government will
become transformed. The old national security considerations will
The next stop is the court system, where plans are being made
already to eliminate judges. True, there were many corrupt jurists, but there
was no institution in Egypt where there were more courageous individuals and
advocates of democracy. But that’s the problem.
The very integrity that
made these men stand up against Mubarak will make them do the same against the
Brotherhood – and they will not enforce sharia law. Their vote against the
parliamentary result was a warning. They will soon be ousted.
upcoming conference of pro-Islamist judges will recommend massive retirements;
the new constitution, written by Islamists, will weaken the courts against
sharia as interpreted by Islamic clerics. The Brotherhood will take over
al-Azhar University and appoint one of its men as chief qadi, Muslim judicial
official. They will get into control of the wealthy religious
endowments. Within a year, Egypt will be fundamentally transformed.
Considers what this means in terms of foreign
The writer is director of the Global Research in International
Affairs (GLORIA) Center.