Archive: July, 2013
It’s not surprising that Egypt has deteriorated into violence since the military ousted elected president Mohammed Morsi last week.
The huge anti-Morsi demonstrations that preceded the military coup were an indicator of one of the region’s most critical fault lines, between Arabs who accept, and those who oppose any Islamist government whose ultimate goal is the imposition of religious law.
Westerners often don’t recognize the polarization over this issue in the region. Rule by religious law is rejected not just by the small percentage of Arab liberals, but also by religious minorities, including Arab Christians, and by many Arabs who may be devout but don’t want to be ruled by hardline Islamists.
Here’s the tragic truth about the Egyptian military’s apparent takeover in Cairo. While millions of Egyptians may cheer, the fall of President Morsi won't help Egypt's democracy or economy to revive.
President Mohammed Morsi, and the Muslim Brotherhood movement to which he belongs, made big mistakes, acting as if his 50.7 per cent election victory entitled him to ignore the wishes of the other half of the country.
But his political opposition is hardly more democratic. Sharply divided between liberals (a small minority), leftists, remnants of the Mubarak regime, and a disaffected plurality dissatisfied with Morsi’s failure to revive the economy, the opposition has never produced clear leaders or a coherent economic or political program.