Monday, August 20, 2012

The Total Transformation of Egypt

Barry Rubin, one of the brightest MidEast experts, provides this incisive analysis and makes a few predictions

A short history of democracy in Egypt -Barry Rubin

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 Egypt.

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...write a Constitution. But now there is no Constitution. There are no restrictions on presidential powers.

And then 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 U.S. 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.

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 U.S. government did not lift a finger to help.

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.

Saaed Eddin Ibrahim, arguably the Arab world’s leading sociologist [is] warning that the Islamists want to hijack power and establish [a] dictatorship. He pleads for Westerners to wake up.

Egyptian President al-Mursi has now named the heads of the main Egyptian newspapers, radio stations, and television networks. 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 next stop is the court system where plans are being made already to eliminate judges.

An 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 wealth religious endowments.

Within a year, Egypt will be fundamentally transformed. Irretrievably transformed.
[The Rubin Report]


John Vagabond said...

Lucid and prescient. It remains to be seem how the remaining Arab nations align with the new and inevitably cleric-dominated face of Cairo and the outcome of the horrific debacle in Syria. The very fact that Sunni and Shia are in such implacable opposition may be the window of escape for Israel. I'd like to believe it, but I doubt it.

Bruce said...

Yes it will be interesting to see how it plays out. The Sunni Shia divide is exceedingly deep. Daniel Pipes, PhD (in a piece on Syria that I featured on this blog) pointed out that while jihadists are busy fighting each other they have less energy to hit the West.

John Vagabond said...

..."a consummation devoutly to be wished". Hamlet. Act III Scene 1.

Bruce said...

Ah, A Shakespeare lover. So nice to have you aboard.