In Egypt, the Chickens Are Coming Home to Roost

April 2, 2012 4:33 pm 7 comments

An Egyptian voter.

The chickens are coming home to roost in the Middle East.  The experts who supported the removal of President Hosni Mubarak of Egypt, e.g., The New York Times’ Tom Friedman and many others, are perhaps now wondering if they were right to do so.

Hosni Mubarak was certainly an authoritarian ruler.  His government brooked little or no dissent; there was no competing party at the polls; and the judiciary was beholden to Mubarak’s government.

At the same time, Mubarak was a loyal friend of the United States, a guarantor of the rights of minority Egyptians such as Coptic Christians, and a protector of the peace agreement negotiated by Egyptian President Anwar Sadat and Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin under the auspices of President Jimmy Carter at Camp David.

In the election following the peaceful revolt started in Tahrir Square, the Muslim Brotherhood – the ideological forbearer of al-Qaeda — won the largest block of seats, and according to The New York Times of April 1, “The Brotherhood, an Islamist group outlawed under Mr. Mubarak, already dominates the Parliament and the assembly writing a new Constitution.”

The Muslim Brotherhood had announced it would not nominate a candidate to become Egypt’s first president since Mubarak.  However, it has now nominated “its chief strategist and financier Khairat el-Shater on Saturday as its candidate to become Egypt’s first president since Hosni Mubarak, breaking a pledge not to seek the top office and a monopoly on power.”  The Times article went on, “His candidacy is likely to unnerve the West and has already outraged Egyptian liberals who wonder what other pledges of moderation the Brotherhood may abandon.”

The question facing American liberals who supported Mubarak’s ouster is, does it make sense for us to recognize and support the Muslim Brotherhood and is it in our national interest to do so?  Adolf Hitler was lawfully installed as Chancellor of Germany, even though his party never received a majority of the votes.  The Muslim Brotherhood and its political arm now dominate the Egyptian Parliament, as the Nazi Party came to dominate the German Reichstag.  Should we in such situations look for opposition parties or individuals to support who are closer to our political philosophy?

A similar problem exists in Turkey.  The party in power there is the Justice and Development Party, an Islamist party.  The founder of modern Turkey, Kemal Ataturk – father of the Turks – specifically gave to the armed forces of Turkey the role of protector of Turkey’s secularity.  The United States and particularly the European Union, constantly made clear they wanted that power removed from the armed forces which had since the death of Ataturk intervened several times in deposing a civilian government when it became Islamist and threatened Turkey’s secularity.  The European Union made it clear that, unless Turkey removed those obligations and power from the Turkish Army, Turkey would not be admitted to the E.U.  Turkey’s civilian government not long ago arrested hundreds of army officers and some were put on trial as is the case currently involving the former Turkish army chief General Ilker Basbug.

Should we have supported the army command’s efforts at retaining their constitutional mandate?  Our failure to do so has paved the way to mass arrests of army officers and decimation of their ranks by the Islamist government.  Now we have an Islamist government in Turkey that seeks to become a Muslim superpower in the Middle East and is doing so by threatening war with Israel.  Turkey has threatened to break the Gaza blockade imposed by Israel intended to prevent arms from pouring into Gaza by sea.

Do the American liberals who applauded Turkey’s removal of military officers who sought to keep Turkey secular still believe they were right?  The questions I raise are not easy to answer.  I have never touted myself as a Middle East expert, but it has become crystal clear that a great number of the experts who recently waxed almost lyrical in support of the Arab Spring have much to answer for.

7 Comments

  • I think its clear that Islamofascists are trying to project the misleading image that they are just following in the footsteps of the popular (US-backed) “Colour Revolutions” in Eastern Europe and its surrounds. So they have apparently duped many in America’s professional foreign policy establishment along these lines.

    It is an old trick (Hitler, Lenin were adepts) to play along in deliberative forums until such time as the right moment or opportunity presents itself to show one’s true colours. Read this Wikipedia article about one of the Brotherhood’s late leaders, in whose footsteps Al-Qaeda leader Dr. Ayman Al-Zawahiri clearly follows: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sayyid_Qutb

    So far, the Brotherhood has taked no action to distance itself from some of the really bad and dangerous people who have headed it or have been associated with it.

  • I think its clear that Islamofascists are trying to project the misleading image that they are just following in the footsteps of the popular (US-backed) “Colour Revolutions” in Eastern Europe and its surrounds. So they have apparently duped many in America’s professional foreign policy establishment along these lines.

    It is an old trick (Hitler, Lenin were adepts) to play along in deliberative forums until such time as the right moment or opportunity presents itself to show one’s true colours. Read this Wikipedia article about one of the Brotherhood’s late leaders, in whose footsteps Al-Qaeda leader Dr. Ayman Al-Zawahiri clearly follows.

    So far, the Brotherhood has taked no action to distance itself from some of the really bad and dangerous people who have headed it or have been associated with it.

  • Daniel in Brookline

    When Israel kills one hundred filistinian, for every Israelite, no one speaks out of it.

    On the contrary, the newspapers of the world never stop talking about it. Look around you.

    If you want something that no one speaks of, perhaps you could address the fact that, according to the Palestinians,, one Israeli life is worth hundreds, if not thousands, of Palestinian lives. (Those are the terms of the prisoner swaps negotiated by Israel with Hamas, with Fatah, and just about everyone else. Were I a Palestinian, I’d feel horribly humiliated by my own leaders over this.)

    Or perhaps you could address this: Israel has been pleading, for years, that the Palestinians renounce violence — and mean it. In nearly fifty years of fighting, that’s the one strategy the Palestinians have never tried. If peace is important to them, you’d think they would have tried it by now.

  • When Israel kills one hundred filistinian, for every Israelite, no one speaks out of it.
    Now, the world would see Israel has opposed 150 million Arabs. Furthermore, People would understand they are killing Muslims.
    Why nobody speak out against Muslim Killers!

  • Funny, but Koch never mentions the word “Obama” in connection with this diplomatic debacle. If he had, he’d have plenty to answer for when he endorses Obama in November.

  • Like the “Arabellion” in Arab countries there must be now a counterpart of that movement in Israel. It takes two to tango. Rabin said, you make peace with your enemies, not with your friends. Since Rabins violent death things are going awfully wrong in Israel and this has to be stopped. The Arabs did it right to get rid of politicians who had no inner moral compass. Israelis should do the same with their politicians.

  • Like the “Arabellion” in Arab countries there must be now a counterpart of that movement in Israel. It takes two to tango. Rabin said, you make peace with your enemies, not with your friends. Since Rabin things are going awfully wrong in Israel and this has to be stopped.

Leave a Reply

Please note: comments may be published in the Algemeiner print edition.


Current day month ye@r *

More...

  • Israel Sports Israeli Judo Team Faces Antisemitic Harassment in Morocco: ‘We Will Murder You’

    Israeli Judo Team Faces Antisemitic Harassment in Morocco: ‘We Will Murder You’

    Israeli athletes at a world Judo championship in Morocco reportedly faced antisemitic slurs during the competition, news site WorldNetDaily reported on Monday. “We will murder you,” and “you’re not wanted here, go home,” were among the vituperative attacks directed at the Israeli Judo Association team, which was in Morocco last week for the World Masters Judo Tournament. According to Haaretz, each Israeli teammate was met with boos and jeers upon entering a fight. Additionally, no Israeli flags were present at [...]

    Read more →
  • Music US & Canada Lady Gaga Accepts ADL Award: ‘Your Philosophies Are So in Line With Ours’ (VIDEO)

    Lady Gaga Accepts ADL Award: ‘Your Philosophies Are So in Line With Ours’ (VIDEO)

    Pop superstar Lady Gaga on Thursday accepted an award from Jewish human rights group the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) on behalf of her Born This Way Foundation, which strives to combat bullying among young people. “Your philosophies are so in line with ours,” she said of the ADL upon accepting the Making a Difference Award in a videotaped message, which was shown at a ceremony in New York City. “We want to help young people know that their feelings and who they are on [...]

    Read more →
  • Music Personalities At 80, Singer-Songwriter Leonard Cohen’s Jewish Roots ‘Very Much Intact’

    At 80, Singer-Songwriter Leonard Cohen’s Jewish Roots ‘Very Much Intact’

    JNS.org – Eighty years young, Leonard Cohen fits many descriptions—singer, songwriter, poet, novelist, monk. From his Jewish upbringing in Canada to the present day, Cohen has always explored his spiritual side. This month, the singer-songwriter released the CD (May 12) and iTunes (on May 8 of this year) formats of his latest album, Can’t Forget: A Souvenir of the Grand Tour, which features live recordings from his world tours in 2012 and 2013. Last year, Cohen’s Popular Problems was voted by Rolling Stone [...]

    Read more →
  • Europe Sports FIFA Head Says Israel Should Not be Booted From World Soccer Association

    FIFA Head Says Israel Should Not be Booted From World Soccer Association

    JNS.org – Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) head Sepp Blatter said during a meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that contrary to Palestinian complaints, Israel has not violated any FIFA statutes and should not be suspended from international soccer’s governing body. “We should not come to one federation saying we will exclude them,” said Blatter, the Jerusalem Post reported. “If the national association is fulfilling its obligations then there is no need to intervene,” he said. “I’m on a [...]

    Read more →
  • Featured Middle East Sports Jewish Rights Group Slams Palestinian Attempts to Suspend Israel From FIFA

    Jewish Rights Group Slams Palestinian Attempts to Suspend Israel From FIFA

    Jewish human rights group the Simon Wiesenthal Center (SWC) said on Tuesday it was “appalled” by a Palestinian Football Association initiative to suspend Israel from FIFA, calling it another “front waged in the context of the Palestinian Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) campaign.” “We are appalled at the temerity of the Palestinan Football Association (PFA) demand that FIFA suspend Israel at your forthcoming Congress in Zurich,” wrote the group’s international relations director, Dr. Shimon Samuels, in a letter to FIFA President Joseph [...]

    Read more →
  • Theater US & Canada Star of Auschwitz Thriller Says ‘God Was Holding the Hand of Every Jew in the Gas Chamber’ (VIDEO)

    Star of Auschwitz Thriller Says ‘God Was Holding the Hand of Every Jew in the Gas Chamber’ (VIDEO)

    The lead actor in Son of Saul, an Auschwitz thriller featured at this year’s Cannes Film Festival, told the UK’s The Guardian that he believes God was “holding the hand” of each Jew who died in the Nazi gas chambers during the Holocaust. “I do not for one nanosecond like to pretend that God is off the hook. He could and should have stopped it at a much earlier stage,” Géza Röhrig, 48, said. ”But I would not be able to get [...]

    Read more →
  • Music Backstreet Boys Singer Howie D Gushes Over Masada During Israel Trip

    Backstreet Boys Singer Howie D Gushes Over Masada During Israel Trip

    Backstreet Boys singer Howie Dorough took to Instagram on Tuesday to marvel about climbing the famed Masada fortress with his band during their visit to Israel, where they will perform this week for the first time. The group’s second day of sightseeing in the Jewish state included the Masada hike, and taking a mud bath at the Dead Sea. A picture from the band’s official Twitter page shows the five singers covered in mud. While relaxing in the Dead Sea, [...]

    Read more →
  • Book Reviews US & Canada ‘Arms and the Dudes:’ New Book, Film Detail How Ex-Orthodox Yeshiva Guys Became Top Suppliers for Afghan Army

    ‘Arms and the Dudes:’ New Book, Film Detail How Ex-Orthodox Yeshiva Guys Became Top Suppliers for Afghan Army

    A new book and its upcoming film adaptation tell the true story of how three former yeshiva students who habitually smoked marijuana scored a $300 million contract from the U.S. government to supply weapons for the Afghan Army, the New York Daily News reported on Sunday. Arms and the Dudes details how the Miami Beach potheads became “the most unlikely gunrunners in history,” according to the book’s author, investigative reporter Guy Lawson. The tale begins with Efraim Diveroli, nephew of [...]

    Read more →



Sign up now to receive our regular news briefs.