Saturday, July 6, 2013

Twitter Messages, Other Egypt Links

The day after the June 30 protests, Sisi issued a 48-hour ultimatum to Mursi: either yield to the protesters' demands that he share power with the opposition, or make way for the military to impose a solution. In two private meetings with the president on July 1 and 2, the armed forces chief was even more blunt with the president, but met with incomprehension and rejection, a military source briefed on the meetings said.

"General Sisi went to him and told us when he came back, ‘He was in denial, he said the protesters are just 130,000 to 160,000, but I told him ‘No, sir, they are far more than that and you must listen to their demands'', the source said.

"In the second meeting, General Sisi went with a video recording of the protests the army had made and told him ‘Sir, the situation is out of hand and your suggestions to change the government or the constitution are now too late and will not satisfy the street. I suggest you call a referendum on your continued rule.' But he refused and said this is unconstitutional and illegitimate," the source said.

...In 1992 a French analyst of the Muslim world, Olivier Roy, published a book entitled "L'échec de l'Islam politique"—translated into English three years later as "The Failure of Political Islam".

Back then, political Islam—the idea that Islam could provide a platform for taking and exercising power in modern times—seemed to be doing quite well. The Islamic masters of Iran, having withstood a long war with Iraq, were looking for new places to extend their influence, including the former Soviet republics to their north. In Algeria, an Islamist party had won a clear electoral majority, triggering a military intervention and then a civil war whose outcome was anybody's guess. It seemed clear that wherever secular despots were willing to relax their grip, Islamist parties would step into the void.

But none of those things disproved the thesis of Mr Roy, who is now a professor at the European University Institute. One of his simplest but most compelling points was that for all its power as a mobilising slogan, Islam just does not provide the answers to the problems of governing a modern state. Quite recently the resurgence of the Muslim Brotherhood in the wake of the Arab spring seemed, once again, to challenge Mr Roy's analysis. But as of this week, he could be forgiven for saying: "I told you so."

(I know. Egypt, not Iran. Link to read later. If Vali Nasr sez important, it's important.) 

I've read he totally lacks "street cred" in Egypt. Ex-pat too long. Idealistic but perhaps not ideal, despite a Nobel Prize. 


Not Egypt here but we need comic relief...


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