07 December 2012

What is Happening in Egypt?

A dear Canadian friend asked me “What is happening in Egypt?”  Accordingly I tried to explain the current situation in my beloved country from my own perspective.

Mohamed Morsy the Egyptian president is of Muslim Brotherhood (MB) origins. He used to be the leader of the MB party the so called “Freedom and Justice Party” before he was elected president. He was highly praised by Egyptians for his courageous stand against the Egyptian army, which he wanted to distance from politics. A couple of weeks ago his international prestige peaked with his recent role in securing the Palestinian- Israeli cease-fire

However, Morsy himself delivered a blow to this positive image he had built with his own people. Immediately after the cease-fire, under the pretext of “defending the Egyptian revolution from its enemies,” he announced a constitutional decree giving him extraordinary powers that were not allowed to be challenged.  The decree grants Morsy judicial immunity in all decisions and extended this legal protection to the Constitutional Committee and the upper house of parliament, the Shoura Council. It was then when all the troubles began.

Egyptians from all beliefs  and parties (Liberals, Socialists, Capitalists, Communists, Intellectuals and common people) who are worried about the intentions of the Islamists again filled Tahrir Square and began protesting against the new  “Pharaoh” some Egyptian columnists and writers wrote that Morsy named himself God. This time, clashes were not between the security forces and protesters as it was the case in Mubarak’s time but between the true Egyptians and the Muslim Brotherhood & Salafist fanatics supporting Morsy.
Actually, the disaster started when the Muslim Brotherhood and fanatical Salafists, had won the majority of the parliamentary seats in an unconstitutional Parliament. They managed to sideline all other parties like liberals, Socialists, Christians, women, socialists etc while working on a new constitution. Later the constitutional court annulled the parliament.

Morsy cancelled the constitution committee then he created another committee filled with Islamists in my opinion as a vengeance for annulling the first committee and the parliament. Following Morsy’s announcement of his constitutional decree, Egyptians went to protest in the streets and in Tahrir square against his anti-democratic powers. In the meantime, Morsy mobilized the Islamists in his constitution committee to quickly draw up a new constitution and announced a rushed referendum that should take place on 15 December. This move was the strongest blow to democracy in Egypt.

While Morsy had the opportunity to improve Egypt’s situation and make it one of the most respected democratic countries of the world, Morsy, his Muslim Brotherhood  and Salafist followers,  with no democratic mindset, are dividing Egypt to achieve their religious and ideological objectives instead of unifying the country on the principles of legal equality. Morsy and “his gang” believe that winning an election gives the ruling party the authority to tamper with the country and rule with tyranny.

Lately the so called “Sofa Party” (the Egyptians sitting on their butts watching TV and waiting to see what will happen in their beloved country with no interest in politics) stood up and went to the streets to protest along with the Liberals, Socialists, intellectuals, and common Egyptians. The president sent his Muslim Brotherhood thugs to attack the peaceful demonstrators and it became a blood bath.

Egypt's opposition coalition blamed Morsy  for violence that erupted outside his palace last Wednesday and said it was ready for dialogue only if he  scrapped the decree that gave him “extraordinary” powers.
Unfortunately, it seems that Egyptian Islamists and their leaders believe in the “predominance of the Islamist” not caring about protecting the rights of the opposition and minorities. They refuse to listen to the voices in the streets  shouting  “we don’t want you anymore’’ nor they want to listen to the voice of reason.

Currently, in Egypt we have a president who, although chosen in a democratic election, is trying to arm himself with anti-democratic powers; a party that is trying to cook up a shameful constitution and governance by overwhelming the opposition. In a nut shell,  Morsy is trying to impose his view on the Egyptians while splitting the country in two instead of unifying it.

Over the past week Egyptians of all creeds and ages have taken to the streets again to march for the justice they believe in. All over the country people are leaving their homes to stand together and make their voices heard, totaling hundreds of thousands and their numbers are growing. Chanting slogans that are witty in wordplay yet leave nothing to the imagination. They are united against Morsy, his Muslim Brotherhood thugs and his devilish constitutional decree, and it does not look like these Egyptians in the streets will be going home any time soon.

So no matter what the international media tells you, my countrymen and women, Christians and Muslims are in the streets in millions standing up for the real “Freedom and Justice” and I wish I could be in Egypt to be there with them.