In his statement condemning the violence in Egypt President Obama has asked his national security team to assess the implications of the military’s assault against its own people. There is no need for long deliberations. The likely consequences are uniformly grim.
This is a grave setback for the cause of democracy and the prospects for nonviolent change. From the blood of the many ‘martyrs’ killed by the military will grow seeds of revenge and retaliatory violence. Chaos and terror will likely spread in Egypt and beyond.
The military may be able to kill and imprison the leaders of the Islamic Brotherhood, but they will not be able to crush the broader Islamic movement, or alter the fact that Islam has been and remains the dominant political force in Egypt and most Arab countries.
The slaughter now underway undermines the hope for democratic politics in Egypt and most of the Arab world. No Islamic political leader in the region will be able to argue credibly that the methods of democracy are a viable path to progress.
The same is true for the use of nonviolent methods of change. The dreams of the youth who led the unarmed revolution have turned into a nightmare, their bright hopes shattered by mass killing in the streets. Few will believe any longer in the power of nonviolence.
President Obama should take more forceful action, joining with other nations to seek a quick end to military rule and a return to civilian rule.
One thought on “The Nightmare in Egypt”
The blog ignores several facts needed to reach a conclusion that what is happening will lead to chaos and further violence:
1 – Democracy already witnessed a set back with the election of Morsi as a president. He and his group failed to fulfill their promise of an inclusive democratic process, excluding all political groups in Egypt from the government, the constitutional assembly and others. They wrote their own constitution and passed it through voting frauds. Further more, they created sectarian tension in Egypt for the first time in history and many sectarian tensions occurred as a result. Morsi also appointed a terrorist who was involved in Aswan bombings back in the 90s as its governor. Had Egypt continued in this path, it wouldnt have only affected the democratic process but also made Egypt ruled by a group that supports terrorists.
2- The Muslim Brotherhood protestors were already violent, attacking civilians, blocking roads, burning cars and destroying stores. That is why the current actions by the military are widely supported by the Egyptians in general. This can be confirmed by the large protests the supported the military, the statements of the church and mosque.
3- the fact that Islam is the religion of the m ajority of Egyptians does not make it a political force. For decades, no political party in Egypt was allowed to be formed on a religious basis. In addition, after being ruled by a group that uses religion for political gains, Egyptians – other than the Muslim brotherhoods and other Jihadi groups – became aware of the importance of separating religion from the state. Hence, they went out in huge protests exceeding 33 millions on the 30th of June to reject Morsi’s rule and demand his ouster.
4- Given that t here is a broad support for the current action of the military and the negative sentiments towards the US intervention in the Egyptian affairs, any action by Obama could harm the Egyptian – US relations rather than solve the contemporary situation.
5- Finally, I don’t support violence as a means to resolve conflicts but to find a solution to the current situation, it is important to come by Egyptians themselves in order to sustain it.