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The Egyptian Situation: Extremely Worrying and Unpredictable PDF Print E-mail
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Saturday, 10 August 2013 01:00

During updated this site with two pieces on the current Egyptian and the nightmare which has been unfolding in that nation. So when I started thinking about a new update I was contemplating writing something about the Israeli Palestinian conflict now that these two perennial antagonists have started talking again under the auspices of the Obama administration, when Israeli and Palestinian negotiators met on Tuesday July 30, in Washington and gave themselves about nine months to try to reach a final status agreement to end their more than six decades of  hostility, but I decided to forget about these talks because I am almost certain that like the many similar attempts during the last sixty or more years these are not going to achieve anything, this is nothing but a public relations gimmick, the breach between the two sides is simply non-bridgeable, this is nothing but an attempt to divert the attention from the terrible situation which is currently pervading the middle east, with the extremely dangerous situations in Syria, Iraq and Egypt, which are threatening very serious and tragic consequences, so I decided to talk once more about what is happening in Egypt.


In my first comments on the Egyptian situation, which appeared on this site on Saturday, July 6, 2013, I said, during the last week of June, Egypt was boiling with an intense rebellion against president Mursi, his opponents were trying to force him to resign, but he did not oblige, he was hoping that the Muslim Brotherhood will come to his rescue. But his refusal to step-down created an intense polarization of the Egyptian society which was already deeply polarized and threatened a civil war. This forced the army to intervene and gave the conflicting groups 48 hours to resolve the deadly political crisis, the military implied that if the president and his opponents failed to heed what the army called the will of the people they would interfere with their own road map for resolving the crisis. The army’s ultimatum was rejected by Mursi, so the army chief said he was imposing a plan which included the suspension of the constitution, the president of the constitutional court is to assume the role of an interim leader until a new president is elected and the formation of a government by technocrats. Since the plan was rejected by the president the army went ahead and executed their plan on Wednesday July 3, 2013 which resulted in the dismissal of the president when army commandos came to take him to an undisclosed defense ministry facility. Thus also the decades old dream of the Muslim Brotherhood of establishing an Islamist rule in Egypt was left in ruins.

In my last update to this site On Sunday, July 21, 2013 which was also about the recent events in Egypt, I said that the Muslim brotherhood have received a very heavy blow, but they are not going to accept their defeat in a gentlemanly way or graciously, they are going to strike back, I said, these people have been in politics for almost a century, they have been well established in Egyptian society through their extensive social work and superb organizational skills and discipline. and then all hell broke, on Friday July 5, and after midday prayers, the Muslim brotherhood’s supporters staged a series of marches across Cairo, about 2,000 of them advanced towards the headquarters of the Republican guard where the ex-president is believed to have been held, troops opened fire on the marchers when they tried to force their way into the facility, three were killed and dozens injured. Similar violent protests were taking place at the same time in many places in the country which were quelled by the army and the police which left 36 dead and almost a thousand injured, but the brotherhood were not daunted and vowed to continue their fight until their man was reinstated and then A very serious act of violence suddenly erupted on Saturday July 27.

This violence took place when supporters of the deposed president who were camping  near one of Cairo’s biggest mosques, Rabaa al-Adawiya , sought to expand their camp by moving into a nearby main boulevard, at the same time  another group who were camping in a square called al Nahda which was located near the Cairo university’s main camp, were confronted by policemen and armed civilians who opened fire on the protestors and created the deadliest single outbreak of violence since the army deposed the Islamist president. The violence left 72 people killed and a thousand injured which was the deadliest single outbreak of violence since the army deposed the Islamist president and ignited a very harsh reaction from various foreign governments and international human rights organizations. Human rights watch called it a massacre.

The extent of the recent bloodshed pointed to a rapidly deteriorating situation, a very dangerous confrontation between the country’s two camps, neither side has shown much taste for reconciliation, the Islamists, staunchly reject the new leadership they call it illegal, and insist the only possible solution is to reinstate their man. On the other hand the new authorities were pushing ahead with a plan to return to what they called a democratically elected government. At the same time, the army confident of the public support they were receiving asked in a TV program by their commander general el-Sisi for a mandate against terrorism and violence, after which the interim government ordered police to end sit-ins by the supporters of the ousted President in the capital Cairo. "The cabinet has decided to take all measures necessary to confront these risks and put an end to them," an official said in a televised statement. The statement termed the continued rallies "a national security threat". The interim government had earlier warned that any violation of the law would be dealt with "firmly". In response to this threat a Brotherhood spokesman said that his supporters had no option but to stay put, saying the decision to clear the camps had been taken by a gang that had taken over the state and was trying to cheat the people of their democratic rights.

But “firmly” which was the attitude of the new leadership to their opponent’s position created a huge backlash which forced them to retreat in the face of the defiant mood in the sit in camps, the protestors and the other brotherhood loyalists were saying they had no option but to continue their month long sit-ins unless their demand, the re-instatement of their man, President Mursi. There was also a rather run-of-the-mill reaction to the government’s plans from several foreign and Arab quarters, from the American government, from the US senate, from the EU and from several human rights organizations and from the states of Qatar and the United Arab Emirate, these were engaged in a very intense and concerted effort to bring the two sides together and to agree on some compromise to solve the deadly crisis. There was also a similar effort few days earlier by a group of so called African wise men.
But it was in vain , nothing was accomplished, all the efforts which were spent by the mediators came to nothing and the interim presidency declared in a statement early on Wednesday August 7, that the mediation has failed, the Americans and the Europeans and the Arabs were unable to convince the brotherhood to stop their opposition and end their demonstrations and  their sit ins and accept a peaceful solution to the crisis, it went on to say that it upholds the Muslim Brotherhood completely responsible for the failure of these efforts and for consequent events and developments relating to violation of the law and endangering public safety, a few hours later the prime minister, in a televised statement urged Mursi supporters to end their protests and disperse, he said, the decision to break up the protest camps  and sit ins was final and irreversible, the government had run out of patience, their man is not going to be re-instated. The brotherhood and their allies refused these extortions and insisted on continuing their activities all over the country which returned the situation back to square one.

On this day, Thursday, august 8, the first day of Eed al-Fittr, when this updated is going to be inserted in the Hanoudiletter, Egypt is tense and edgy, the people are holding their breath for what might happen during the next few days,  all signs are pointing to a very unpleasant and vehement violence between the two warring factions.

The current situation in Egypt is extremely worrying and the country’ future is very disturbing and unpredictable.

Najeeb Hanoudi
Thursday August 8, 2013
Southfield/ Michigan
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