Egypt Buries the Brotherhood

Protest against President Mohamed Morsi in Cairo, Egyptby :

It’s not unusual for the United States and a Muslim country to be on the opposite sides of the War on Terror. It is unusual for a Muslim country to take a stand against terrorism while the United States backs the right of a terrorist group to burn churches, torture opposition members and maintain control of a country with its own nuclear program.

But that’s the strange situation in what Egypt’s public prosecutor has declared “the biggest case of conspiracy in the country’s history.”

The media assumes that the charges accusing Muslim Brotherhood leaders of conspiring with Hamas and Hezbollah, passing state secrets to Iran’s Revolutionary Guard and plotting to help foreign terrorists kill Egyptian soldiers is a show being put on for Western audiences. They couldn’t be more wrong.

This isn’t about winning international PR points. It’s about destroying the credibility of the Brotherhood in the eyes of Egyptians and burying it along with what’s left of the Arab Spring in the waters of the Nile.

Obama assumed that cuts to military aid would force Egypt to restore the Muslim Brotherhood to power. He was wrong and the latest round of criminal charges show just how wrong he was.

The charges that the Muslim Brotherhood conspired with Hamas and Hezbollah to unleash a wave of terror against Egypt go to the heart of this struggle between the Egyptian nationalism of the military and the Islamic transnationalism of the Muslim Brotherhood. They paint the Muslim Brotherhood as not merely corrupt or abusive, the way that many tyrannies are, but as a foreign subversive element.

These aren’t merely criminal charges. They are accusations of treason.

There are two narratives of the Arab Spring. In one of them, the people rose up against the tyrants.  In the other an international conspiracy of Western and Muslim countries collaborated with the Muslim Brotherhood to take over Arab countries.

To destroy the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, the state has to do more than accuse Morsi of abuses of power; it has to show that he and his organization were illegitimate because they were Un-Egyptian.

That will prove that the differences between Mubarak and Morsi aren’t incidental. Mubarak may have been thuggish and corrupt, but he was an Egyptian patriot. Morsi will be charged with being an Iranian traitor who conspired to take away the Sinai and turn it over to the terrorist proxies of a Shiite state.

Read more at Front Page

 

New Egyptian Constitution: A Slap at the Brotherhood

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by :

Egyptians have a new draft constitution to vote upon in a referendum to be held either later this month or in January 2014. It is meant to replace, with amendment language and new provisions, the more Islamist-oriented constitution rammed through by former Muslim Brotherhood-backed President Mohammed Morsi. “It is now the right of every Egyptian to declare that this is their constitution,” said Bishop Bola, the representative of the Coptic Orthodox Church on the panel that was responsible for drafting the new constitution.

The big loser will be the Muslim Brotherhood, eclipsed by representatives from a more conservative Islamist party and from Al-Azhar University, the seat of Sunni learning, who spoke for Islamists on the drafting panel and have backed the new constitution. The drafting panel also consisted of activists from Tamarod, the secular youth movement that rallied millions of Egyptians who demanded that Morsi step aside, leading to his ouster and replacement by an interim government under the rule of the defense minister, General Abdul-Fattah el-Sisi.

The constitution drafters and the interim government leaders hope that there will be a significantly larger turnout of voters to approve this constitution than showed up to approve Morsi’s constitution.  A larger turnout and vote in support of the draft constitution would serve to legitimize the current interim government’s self-proclaimed move towards a more inclusive, democratic regime – at least, that is what the interim government leaders are claiming. Whether presidential or parliamentary elections would be held first following the constitution’s ratification remains an open question, possibly to provide the opportunity for Sisi to run for president and consolidate his influence in advance of more contentious, drawn-out parliamentary elections.

On paper, the new constitution would grant new important rights to Egyptian citizens, including protection against torture, human trafficking and persecution for religious belief. It bans parties founded on religion or sect and mandates equality between men and women, both slaps in the face of the Muslim Brotherhood which tried to remake the country in its own image of an Islamist state. In practice, however, the new constitution is but another in a series of constitutional documents, more honored in their breach than their observance. While the new draft pays lip service to human rights and is more secular in nature than its predecessor, the draft keeps Sharia law as the basis for legislation. Repression of dissent, limitations on freedom to practice one’s own religion, and violence and discrimination against women are likely to remain the grim reality on the streets of Egypt. State institutions such as the military and the police will retain their privileged status.

Not surprisingly, the Muslim Brotherhood has already denounced the new draft constitution. It said that “abusive coupists” were trying to “distort Egypt’s legitimate constitution,” by which they mean the Islamist-oriented constitution foisted on the Egyptian people last year by a far less inclusive drafting process.  Liberals, secularists and the Coptic Church were on the outside looking in, in contrast to their inclusion in the current drafting process.

The Obama administration appears to be taking a wait-and-see attitude towards the new draft constitution. But, in the meantime, the administration continues to punish the interim regime by cutting off vital military aid, including the delivery of F-16s, M1A1 tank kits, Harpoon missiles and Apache helicopters. It does so on the pretext that the regime’s forcible suppression of dissent and lack of inclusiveness forced the administration to the point that “we could not continue business as usual with respect to our assistance.”

Why not begin resuming at least some deliveries now that the interim government has taken at least a preliminary step on its roadmap towards a more inclusive civil democracy? The excuse appears to be a recently passed law placing restrictions on protest demonstrations, which was aimed at curbing the incessant protests by Islamists supporting Morsi before violence could erupt but has also ensnared some disaffected secularist activists. In a press statement issued on November 25, 2013, Jen Psaki, State Department Spokesperson, said that “this law, which imposes restrictions on Egyptians’ ability to assemble peacefully and express their views, does not meet international standards and will not move Egypt’s democratic transition forward.”  Samantha Power, U.S. Ambassador to the UN, piled on with this tweet on November 26th: “New law regulating peaceful protests in #Egypt simply doesn’t meet intl standards. Gov’t must protect freedoms, and this law restricts them.”

Why didn’t the administration apply the same “international standards” when it kept the arms flowing unabated to the repressive, non-inclusive Morsi regime? The truth is that the administration would have preferred the Islamist Morsi regime to remain in power.

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In the words of A. Savyon, director of MEMRI’s Iran Media Project, and Y. Carmon, President of MEMRI, in their analysis of the roots of the U.S.’s policy change in the Middle East that led to the Obama administration’s disastrous interim nuclear agreement with Iran:

“In previous attempts to appeal to the peoples of the region, that is, in Ankara and Cairo in 2009, Obama presented a vision of an America that is no longer an imperialist power that maintains military bases in the region and intervenes militarily to protect the status quo, but a country that identifies with the aspirations and interests of the Arab and Muslim peoples and disregards their regimes. In Obama’s perception, the overall U.S. shift in recent years – the pinnacle of which is his attempts at reconciliation with the Iranian regime – does not stem from weakness but is ideologically directed; it dovetails with and intensifies the revolutionary changes taking place in the Arab world since the Arab Spring, with the aim of integrating the U.S. into the Arab and Muslim world of the future.”

Read more at Front Page

 

OBAMA PULLS SUPPORT FOR EGYPT’S WAR ON TERROR

EgyptTripKidsBy Tera Dahl:

The recent decision of the Obama Administration to unilaterally withhold military aid and support without consulting Congress sends the message the United States is on the side of terrorists, instead of with those who are fighting terrorism. Instead of condemning the Egyptian people and their aspirations of a new democratic and free Egypt, the United States should be supporting and learning from Egypt’s war on terror.

I arrived in Cairo on July 3rd at the same moment that Morsi was removed from power in response to overwhelming popular protests – among the largest in human history – calling for him to stand down and call for new elections. In the face of Morsi’s intransigence and refusal to recognize he had lost Egypt’s support, the Egyptian military was faced with either removing him or civil war. At the same time Egypt continued to face a terrorist insurgency in the Sinai tolerated by Morsi that was killing military, police and civilians alike.

Contrary to the reporting in the western media, the Muslim Brotherhood supporters are not the “peaceful” protestors they claim to be. I have been on three trips to Egypt since the removal of Morsi; I have traveled to Minya and Delga to visit the churches, schools, orphanages, homes, shops and police stations that were attacked and destroyed by the Muslim Brotherhood. Even Amnesty International acknowledges that the Muslim Brotherhood engaged in repeated acts of torture and murder in their supposedly “peaceful” protests at Rabaa al-Adawiya. Any conclusion apart from recognizing that they are terrorists who have perpetrated and incited violent acts against innocent Egyptian citizens is a hard departure from reality.

The coverage in the Western media of the widespread terrorism has been spotty. Yes, they have reported on the 60 churches that were burned and destroyed, but not so much the 1,000 Coptic shops and homes that were attacked and the 40 police stations were burned and destroyed by supporters of the Morsi regime. But the loss of life of the Egyptian military, police and citizens committed by Morsi supporters receives considerably less attention. Where is the international community’s condemnation of the Muslim Brotherhood for the killing of 286 police, military and civilians in Rabaa Square on August 14th, or the 21 killed in Nahda Square, or the 15 civilians killed in Hulwan, or the 200 civilians that were killed across the country?

These acts were all committed by those who were supposedly “peacefully” protesting the ouster of Morsi. In his recent interview with Al-Masry Al-Youm, Defense Minister Gen. Abdel Fatah El-Sisi said that the Muslim Brotherhood was allowed 48 days to protest, and Egyptian authorities enforced a standing court order to clear Rabaa Square and other areas only after it was clear that weapons were being smuggled into these “peaceful” protests. These so-called “peaceful” protestors also used machetes, firearms, RPG’s, looted and then burned to the ground the churches, schools, orphanages, shops, and homes in response.

In Delga, Morsi supporters seized the entire village and held the Christians hostage while making them pay the jizya for over a month until the Egyptian military and police liberated the village, arrested the perpetrators and provided security for the people.

Since the removal of Morsi, members of the Muslim Brotherhood have dropped their peaceful mask and revealed their true face of violence by associating with terrorist groups like Al Qaeda and Hamas for operations in the Sinai. In response to these violent acts, the Egyptian Army has launched the largest military operation to eradicate terrorism in the Sinai and have stated that they will continue until the Sinai is “terrorist-free”.

Egyptian law enforcement units of the armed forces and police have raided and destroyed various terrorist locations in the Sinai. They have destroyed weapon storage locations for the terrorists that had large quantities of arms, ammunition, explosive belts, and high explosive material. They have destroyed vehicles owned by the terrorists that were equipped with heavy and medium weapons used by terrorists in attacking the security points of the army and police in the Sinai.

The Egyptian armed forces have closed around 300 tunnels that were used for smuggling goods and arms from Egypt across the border to the Gaza Strip. To prevent inciting more violence, 55,000 unlicensed radical clerics have been banned from preaching in mosques.

Read more at Breitbart

Also see: ALLARD: Riding to the Muslim Brotherhood’s rescue (washingtontimes.com)

White House Considering How to Punish Egypt for Not Being Nice to Muslim Brotherhood

obama-muslim-brotherhood-2By Bridget Johnson:

The White House tried to beat back reports last night that it’s going to financially punish Egypt over the ouster of Mohamed Morsi and actions against the Muslim Brotherhood.

However, the Obama administration has held back about half of the $1.3 billion it would normally pay to Egypt.

“The reports that we are halting all military assistance to Egypt are false. We will announce the future of our assistance relationship with Egypt in the coming days, but as the President made clear at UNGA, that assistance relationship will continue,” National Security Council spokesperson Caitlin Hayden said in a statement last night.

State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf said at yesterday’s press briefing that “no decision” had been made on funding, but “the level of violence that we’ve seen by the interim government since July 3rd, that that’s exactly why this massive policy review has been undertaken, because business can’t continue as usual.”

“What we’re doing right now is taking a look at all of that and determining what makes sense going forward in terms of how we can best support the Egyptian people and help move Egypt towards – back towards a democratic process. That policy decision is going to take into account all of these various things that are going on right now. But I would underscore that that violence is exactly why we’re at this place today where we are talking about what our relationship will look like going forward from a very, sort of, 30,000-foot perspective,” Harf added.

The administration has been putting pressure on Egypt’s interim rulers since the July overthrow to hold snap elections and give the Muslim Brotherhood a place at the table.

Morsi remains in custody as do many of the leaders of the Brotherhood, and the MB has been banned from operating as an NGO by the country’s courts.

A panel amending the MB-drafted constitution to make it inclusive has promised to have the first draft available for review next week.

Morsi’s trial is set to begin Nov. 4. He and seven other Brotherhood leaders faces charge of killing and torturing protesters outside the presidential palace last December. The demonstrators were protesting against a Morsi decree that granted him sweeping new powers.

Egyptian Minister of Defence and army commander Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi told Egyptian daily Al-Masry Al-Youm that he attempted to resolve the political crisis sparked by the massive June 30 protest against Morsi’s rule, but the Muslim Brotherhood refused to negotiate.

Read more at PJ Media

ALLARD: Perilous dalliance with Egyptian extremists

106_2013_b1-allard-ohanian8201_s640x740By Ken Allard:

“No way!” sniffed the money-honey at Washington Dulles International Airport as she refused to exchange my stack of Egyptian pound notes. “That currency is so unstable, we can’t even establish an exchange rate in real money. It’s worthless paper.” Badly jet-lagged, I testily replied that some humility might be in order since the American government, backer of the aforementioned “real money,” was at that very moment, technically insolvent. While I won the debate on points, those Egyptian pounds are still with me as rueful souvenirs of last week’s whirlwind fact-finding trip to Egypt.

Organized by the Westminster Institute, a McLean-based think tank, our small delegation of media and military analysts was given extraordinary access to Egypt’s top decision-makers, the first such private visit since last summer’s overthrow of the Muslim Brotherhood. Our principal interlocutors included the minister of defense, Gen. Abdel-Fattah el-SissiTheodoros II, pope of the Coptic Orthodox Church; and Amr Moussa, drafter-in-chief of the new Egyptian Constitution. We also interviewed business leaders, journalists and student revolutionaries, street-wise veterans of the back-to-back uprisings that toppled the authoritarian regimes of Hosni Mubarak and Mohammed Morsi.

Bottom-line impression: While Egypt struggles valiantly, this key regional ally remains in serious trouble. With tourism down by 85 percent and the average Egyptian existing on $2 a day, foreign investment is a desperate, immediate need. Egyptian elites also worry that the strategic stakes (the largest Arab population and most powerful military) are being obscured by a Washington media muddle obsessed with Syria. From graduate students — many of them unemployed — to their executive-suite elders, the recurring nightmare is that the deposed Muslim Brotherhood will fight to regain control of Egypt, the capstone of the longed-for Islamist caliphate. Given the Brotherhood’s 80-year track record, such fears are not unreasonable.

This also explains why ordinary Egyptians reserve a special measure of loathing for Barack Obama, arguing passionately that he is the Muslim Brotherhood’s silent partner. Some of the most troubling comments:

• “Why does the American government under President Obama continue to back the terrorism of the Muslim Brotherhood — including the kind of terrorism that singles out women?”

• “Why does Washington keep demeaning our revolution by calling it a coup? With more than 20 million signatures on recall petitions and 30 million Egyptians in the streets, what else could the Egyptian army do but carry out the will of the people? Especially when the alternative was civil war?”

• “Egypt has been a loyal friend of the United States since Anwar Sadat and a military partner from Desert Storm to the War on Terrorism. So why are you criticizing your friends and seeing Egyptian problems only through American eyes?”

While no one was crude enough to mention Vladimir Putin as a substitute quarterback, the Egyptian military is palpably angry about the Obama administration’s slow-roll on modernization. Critical equipment, like the F-16 aircraft and the Apache AH-64 attack helicopter, is being delayed. The latter is an especially useful counterinsurgency weapon. Gen. el-Sissi told us flatly that he would not allow theMuslim Brotherhood or anyone else to mount attacks on other countries from Egyptian soil. By that, he meant control over Gaza and the Sinai while continuing to protect the economic “lifeblood” of the Suez Canal. Known threats in those places now include a copious flow of weapons spawned by the fall of longtime Libyan strongman Moammar Gadhafi. Knowledgeable Egyptians charge that “the U.S. just walked away from Libya once it was over” — ensuring that future military disasters were not left to chance.

Read more at Washington Times

Egyptians Bewildered Over Support for Muslim Brotherhood

by Michael Armanious:

What many Egyptians cannot understand is: Why is the U.S. administration siding with the forces of oppression in their country and assisting with its transformation into a failed state under the leadership of the Muslim Brotherhood? Egypt simply cannot be allowed to become another Somalia or Afghanistan, controlled by its own version of the Taliban.

The Egyptian people are astounded. They simply do not understand the Obama Administration’s efforts to bring the Muslim Brotherhood back to power.

In an effort to make some sense of the Obama Administration’s policies, Amr Adeeb, a prominent Egyptian commentator, argues that the U.S. is helping the Muslim Brotherhood to achieve power, in order to turn Egypt into a magnet for jihadist fighters. The goal, Adeeb states, is to turn Egypt into another Syria or Afghanistan and discredit Islamism as a viable political movement.

To Westerners, this may seem like a bizarre conspiracy theory, but for Egyptians it helps explain why the U.S. government is supporting an organization that has openly declared jihad against the West, engaged in threats of war with Israel and Ethiopia, demolished dozens of ancient historic churches, set hospitals on fire, and murdered Christians in the streets. The Muslim Brotherhood has no respect for the rule of law, but the Obama Administration treats the Egyptian military that removed the group from power as a threat to democracy itself.

 

An artist’s rendition of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam on the Blue Nile river, currently under construction. The Muslim Brotherhood government under former President Morsi threatened to wage war with Ethiopia over this project.

The fact is, the Ikhwan (as the Muslim Brotherhood is called in Arabic) engaged in some pretty undemocratic behavior in the election that brought it to power in June 2012. Morsi lied about his background, telling voters he worked for NASA when he did no such thing. He falsely promised to spend $200 billion on an Egyptian renaissance only to say, once he was elected, that it was just an idea. He bribed voters with cooking oil, sugar, and medicine. On the day of the election, with threats of violence, the Muslim Brotherhood stopped thousands of Coptic Christians from voting. Further, in a little known aspect of the election, many voters complained of receiving ballots that had already been marked in Morsi’s favor.

Egyptians were willing to overlook these irregularities in hopes that Morsi would bring order and stability to their country. They hoped he would follow through on his promise to build a modern Egypt; create jobs, and put together and inclusive government and constitution. They hoped he would honor his promise to spend $200 billion on repairing Egypt’s infrastructure as part of an Islamic “Renaissance Project.”

Instead, Morsi worked systematically to dismantle the institutions of a 7,000 year-old country. He gathered his cronies to speak openly, on national television, of destabilizing Ethiopia in a fight over the use of water from the Upper Nile River.

Morsi also straightforwardly stated that he was recreating an Islamic “Caliphate.” He pardoned and freed hard-line Islamists — including Anwar Sadat’s killers — and allowed them to have an Islamic political party, contrary to the constitution, which bans religious parties. When Morsi spoke to audiences, hard-line Islamists sat in the front row, demonstrating that these people were his political base.

To buttress the support of this base, Morsi released members of Gamaa al-Islamiyya, founded by the “Blind Sheikh,” Omar Abdel-Rahman, who attempted the first World Trade Center attack. This group, considered a terrorist organization by the United States, killed over 60 tourists in Luxor in 1997. That history did not stop Morsi from appointing one of its members governor of Luxor, over the objection of local residents who are dependent on tourism for their livelihood. Nor did it stop him from assigning another member of this group as Minister of Culture. With these decisions, Morsi delivered a final blow to Egypt’s tourism industry.

And if people are not even willing to visit Egypt, how will they invest in the country?

Read more at  Gatestone Institute

 

Coptic Christians March on White House, Washington Post

1176164_381903781936483_1016611046_nBY: :

A group of Egyptians protested in front of the White House Thursday afternoon to “expose” what they say is “the clear bias of the Obama administration and the American media in support of the Muslim Brotherhood and its terrorist ideology.”

Hundreds of Egyptians, who travelled to Washington, D.C. from around the United States, gathered in front of the White House before marching to the offices of the Washington Post, news network CNN, and the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR), a Muslim advocacy group that protestors called the Brotherhood’s “embassy.”

Protest organizers called on “all Egyptians” living in the U.S. to join their march, which took place as violence in Egypt continues to rage between the Muslim Brotherhood and secular military forces.

The marchers’ final stop was the Egyptian military attaché’s D.C. office, where the activists chanted their support for “the Egyptian army for its heroic stand against [Muslim Brotherhood] terrorism.”

“We are against the Muslim Brotherhood,” protestor Ramez Mossed told theFree Beacon. “He [Obama] supports the Muslim Brotherhood. He has a big hand in Egypt and the mess in Egypt. We’re trying to tell him, ‘Don’t support the terrorists. Please be fair.’”

Many of those who participated in the march are Coptic Christians, a religious group that has been systematically targeted with violence by pro-Brotherhood protestors, some of whom have been desecrating and sieging churches in Egypt.

The protestors gathered on the curb outside of the White House lofting signs that read, “We support the Egyptian Army,” and “The Muslim Brotherhood never renounced terrorism.”

“You can burn down our churches but you can never touch our faith,” read another sign.

“I love this sign,” said one passerby who saw the sign referring to the churches. “I believe it too.”

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Read more at Free Beacon

Egypt Warns Hamas Over Jihadi Threats

 

Abu Hafs al Maqdisi, the leader of the Gaza-based Jaish al Ummah (Army of the Nation)

Abu Hafs al Maqdisi, the leader of the Gaza-based Jaish al Ummah (Army of the Nation)

IPT, by John Rossomando:

Pro-Islamist Advocacy Campaign Hits the Wall Street Journal

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by MAGDI KHALIL:

The Wall Street Journal is a respected newspaper, and many of its writers are reputable researchers. However, a piece titled “Egypt’s Islamists Will Rise Again” has been described by an observer as “a strike coming from a minority of intellectuals on the conservative side who do not understand the Middle East, though they claim they do, and produce more disorientation among the U.S. public than those apologists on the left,” and that “pieces that undermine the will of Egyptians to resist the Islamists and undermine the will of Americans to stand by them are, willingly or not, part of the Muslim Brotherhood effort to reach their strategic goals.”

The opinion piece authored by Reuel Marc Gerecht, a former CIA analyst serving as a senior fellow with the Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD), suffers not only from wrong assumptions, but is also filled with factual mistakes.

Gerecht laments, “Egyptian liberals since the coup d’état against Mohammed Morsi, have an impression that the Muslim Brotherhood’s ‘moment’ in Egypt lasted 12 months-after a long prelude that began in the 1920s.” This impression is wrong if one would listen to the leaders of the liberal, secular, and democratic movement in Egypt. If Mr. Gerecht had listened carefully to Egypt’s vast Arabic language network on free TV and immersed himself in bloggers’ analyses, he would have avoided writing his piece in the prestigious Wall Street Journal. Most Egyptian analysts who were part of the revolution- not the coup, as the former CIA member keeps calling it- know all too well that the Islamists were not uprooted from Egypt, even though their regime was dismantled. Gerecht’s warnings are in vain, for most Egyptians are alert and are bracing for the counter revolution.

The FDD fellow claims: “Conventional wisdom says that the Brotherhood was founded in opposition to British imperialism and Westernizing secular dictators.” This is the wrong interpretation of history. The Ikhwan were launched after the Ottoman Caliphate was destroyed by secular Turks. British occupation of Egypt started circa 1888, and the Brotherhood was founded in the mid-1920s, forty years later, with the desire to bring back the Caliphate. Removing the British from Egypt was not just a goal of the Ikhwan, but of most Egyptians. The Wafd party was the first secular patriotic movement to demand an end to British colonialism, a la the American Revolution. Geretch espouses the argument of the Brotherhood to explain why popular discontent grew against the regime: “The Brotherhood immolated itself after just a year of grossly incompetent government.” However, most Egyptians rose against the Islamists because of the suppression of basic freedoms. Read the signs held by thirty million demonstrators on June 30 and July 26; it was not about bread and jobs, it was about fascism and oppression.

The author admits that “countless Egyptians who had voted for Brotherhood candidates and its constitution turned against the Islamist group in massive demonstrations” and that “there is also little doubt that many in the Muslim Brotherhood were shocked by the size of these rallies.” However, he denies that the Brotherhood “has been routed by marches that we now know were planned by the tamarrud (rebellion) movement and the military.” In his neo-Orientalist view of Egypt and the Arabic tradition in U.S. bureaucracies, he sees Egypt’s poor “in the vast slums of Cairo” as only able to find a sense of community under the mosques. Geretch and a whole generation of failed Middle East studies in the United States are unable to make the basic distinction that Islam and Islamism are two different concepts. The poor may go to the mosque, but everything depends on who is in the pulpit, a Salafist or a Sufi.

Gerecht slams Egypt’s young liberals as he slammed Iran’s youth in 2009. He writes, “This is not Facebook Cairo, where alienated, deplorably educated, unskilled youth express their anger online and show their own kind of community by staging street protests.” The former intelligence officer dismisses the online kids because he thinks that “local clerics, let alone the cultish, secretive godfathers of the Brotherhood” have more influence among the poor and the lower middle class. On June 30 and July 26, Gerecht and his intellectual companions were proven utterly wrong. The masses listened to their youth inasmuch as they listened to the preachers. Islamologues in the West missed the coach on this one.

Gerecht claims that:

“In these precincts the poor, the Egyptian army, the security services, and the police-all unreformed since the fall of Hosni Mubarak-are viewed suspiciously, if not with hostility. The newfound love affair between the army and Egypt’s secular liberals, who in a year’s time came to the conclusion that they needed the military to check Islamist power, will likely do nothing to diminish the skepticism that Egypt’s devout have for army officers and their associates.”

The analytical mistake goes deeper, as many researchers have parroted the assertions of the Edward Saids and John Espositos of America, in that by nature the poor  are drawn to religious figures and thus even more to the fundamentalist ones. In the mind of Western apologia, Arab and Egyptian poor have no judgment of their own, and perhaps no instincts. In the reality lived on the ground in Egypt, ordinary people make a clear distinction between regimes and armies. The poor are the army. Moreover, in his assessment, Gerecht, like most Western admirers of the Islamists, dismisses 30 million Egyptian citizens who protested the Ikhwan. The country’s liberals do not appear to outnumber the Islamists, but this silent majority of Egypt is the greatest of all forces in the nation. Once it moved against the Brotherhood, the latter shrunk to their real size.

More dangerously in his article, Gerecht accuses the army and security services of being the origin of Mohammed Morsi’s “problems.” He goes ballistic against the enemies of the Islamists: military, police, business elite, and Mubarak era remnants, the very “enemies” identified by the Muslim Brotherhood propaganda internationally. It is awkward that the former CIA analyst uses the exact narrative of the international Ikhwan network and their friends in Western media.

Read more: Family Security Matters

Magdi Khalil, Director of the Forum for Democracy, Cairo and Washington, D.C.

Egypt to Media: Don’t You Dare Distort Our War on Terror

foreignjournosBy David Kenner:

CAIRO — As the confrontation between Egypt’s government and supporters of deposed President Mohamed Morsy heats up, Cairo’s new rulers have a new target for criticism — the foreign press corps.

Egypt’s State Information Service (SIS) released a statement Saturday criticizing some foreign correspondents for “steer[ing] away from objectivity and neutrality,” which resulted in them communicating “a distorted image” of events in Egypt to their audiences. “Egypt is feeling severe bitterness towards some Western media coverage that is biased to the Muslim Brotherhood and ignores shedding light on violent and terror acts that are perpetrated by this group,” the statement read.

The SIS laid out seven ways in which international coverage of Egypt was lacking. In addition to ignoring the Brotherhood’s “thuggery and sabotage,” the statement said, some media “are still falling short of describing the [anti-Morsy protests] of June 30 as an expression of a popular will.” The Egyptian government, in other words, objects to international coverage describing Morsy’s ouster as a military coup.

The statement also accused foreign press of ignoring the support that the Muslim Brotherhood is allegedly drawing from foreigners and jihadists. It accused the media of “completely ignor[ing]” that the Brotherhood had sought support from al Qaeda elements, alleging that five vehicles flying the Islamist “black flag” and armed with automatic weapons had driven into Cairo’s Ramses Square during pro-Morsy protests there on Friday. “[The foreign press] also ignored making reference to the participation of non-Egyptian elements from Pakistan, Syria and Palestine in violent acts committed by the Brotherhood,” the statement read.

Egyptian officials have also echoed the statement’s criticisms in their public remarks. In a press conference yesterday, Egyptian presidency spokesman Mustafa Hegazy opened with remarks in English — a sign that his message was geared to foreign media. He said that Egyptians were “bitter” that the foreign press had ignored stories of Brotherhood supporters killing soldiers, burning churches, and using women and children as human shields. The events in Egypt were not a political disagreement between two sides, he said, but a “war with terrorism … and Egypt will defend its sovereignty.”

Foreign Minister Nabil Fahmy held a press conference on Sunday morning, before which  journalists were handed a packet titled “Egypt Fighting Terrorism: 14th – 16th August.” The foreign minister criticized some in the international community for calling exclusively for the Egyptian government to show restraint, while “ignoring all the violence and attacks on government buildings.”

The official criticism of the foreign press corps has coincided with an increase in attacks on journalists as they cover events in Cairo. The Guardian’s Patrick Kingsley, the Washington Post‘s Abigail Hauslohner, the Independent‘s Alastair Beach, the Wall Street Journal‘s Matt Bradley, andMcClatchy‘s Nancy Youssef were all threatened by Egyptian security forces or civilians in the past several days. Brazilian journalist Hugo Bachega was also detained while covering the protests on Friday, as was Canadian filmmaker John Greyson and physician Tarek Loubani, whose current location remains unknown.

Read the SIS statement at FP

Also see:  Egyptian Democratic Coalition Responds to Obama (newsmax.com)

Muslim Brotherhood Vows to Bring Down Egyptian Regime

Egypt protest 2This is an excellent comprehensive report by Ryan Mauro with links to many videos proving violence committed by Morsi supporters:

Over 600 Egyptians are dead after the authorities moved to dismantle two pro-Morsi encampments, sparking international condemnation and the cancellation by the U.S. of planned joint military exercises. The excessive force is deplorable and plays into the Islamists’ hands, but the Muslim Brotherhood are not the modern-day Mahatma Gandhis that the media is making them look like.

The Clarion Project was sent a stream of videos, photos and eyewitness accounts from Egyptian newspapers and social media sites that tell a different side of the story.

Bloodshed of non-combatants is always saddening, but it must be understood that this crackdown was foreseen by everyone — including the martyrdom-seeking Islamists that were there and refused to leave as ordered. The large gatherings had led to bloody clashes, the blocking of travel routes, major economic problems and were, in the words of Raymond Ibrahim, “mini-emirates” where human rights abuses took place.

Egyptian writer and activist Wael Nawara explains:

“For six weeks, yard by yard, the Rabia al-Adawiya encampment expanded its borders, creeping to claim kilometer after kilometer of neighboring streets, including the Autostrade road, which connects Nasr City and the rest of Cairo to the city’s airport. Until one day, Rabia al-Adawiya was no longer a sit-in, but a sprawling town, even a city-state, with fortifications, an  internal police force, complete with torture camps and border control officials. Rabia al-Adawiya came to manifest the Muslim Brotherhood’s ‘Parallel State.’ ”

On August 1, the Clarion Project reported on how the Islamists were using their children as political props by dressing them up in burial shrouds and encouraging them to declare their desire for martyrdom. In my segment on “Wilkow” on The Blaze, senior Washington correspondent Sara Carter explained that Egyptians who were on the scene told her that the Brotherhood supporters had purposely put women and children in harm’s way.

 

 

The Muslim Brotherhood was hoping for a confrontation that would win them international sympathy. The New York Times reports, “Gathering Thursday morning around a mosque used as a morgue for hundreds killed the day before, many Islamists waited confidently for a surge of sympathetic support from the broader public. But it failed to materialize.” [emphasis mine]

Vice President Mohamed El-Baradei was the only official to resign in protest of the use of force. He wrote, “The beneficiaries of what happened today are the preachers of violence and terrorism, the most extremist groups and you will remember what I am telling you.”

Only two non-Islamist political parties condemned the crackdown. The Times goes on to say that “most other political factions denounced the Islamists as a terrorist threat and applauded the government action.” Even the National Salvation Front, the group El-Baradei used to lead, is siding with the government.

The Tamarod movement that led the massive rallies preceding Morsi’s overthrow endorsed the crackdown, as did the Coptic Christian Church. The Tamarod movement is the most popular political party in Egypt right now with a 39% approval rating. The Egyptian military is, by far, the most trusted institution with 93% of Egyptians expressing confidence in it.

Foreign governments and international Islamists may be outraged, but the Egyptians who actually live there have a different opinion. And there is not a single account of a police officer or soldier refusing to carry out orders or defecting, as was the case when Mubarak or Morsi conducted heavy-handed crackdowns.

The non-Islamist Egyptians are obviously seeing things that we in the West are not.

The Egyptian government says that it gave protesters a chance to leave the scene and used tear gas to disperse those who refused. The security forces used loudspeakers to tell the demonstrators to leave and many did (as seen here), some even with police escort. Those that were left behind were the most hardcore Islamists. The violence began after the tear gas was used with each side claiming the other fired the first shot.

Left-wing Middle East expert Juan Cole confirms, “Egyptians tweeting from the scene said that police had encountered armed resistance from some of the Muslim Brotherhood and traded fire with them.” You can see some pictures of armed Islamists at the “peaceful” protests here. There is also a viral video with nearly a half-million views showing Islamists firing their guns.

There is video showing that the pro-Morsi demonstrators stored weapons inside flag-draped coffins that were at the encampments andvideo showing the bodies of 11 security personnel massacred by Brotherhood supporters at Kirdasa Police Station near Gisa. One particularly graphic video shows the dead body of one officer.

There were further gruesome discoveries after the encampments were cleared. Other videos allegedly show the finding of 20 hidden corpses at a pro-Morsi encampment at Rabba el-Adaweya Square, and the Clarion Project recently reported on the Muslim Brotherhood’s secret torture chambers which were recently exposed.

The Cairo-based Maspero Youth Union posted a video on Facebook and emphasized, “We ascertain that the sit-ins of the Muslim Brotherhood were not by any means peaceful. On the contrary, they were armed and threatened state stability and sovereignty.” The video is a collection of videos showing Morsi supporters opening fire, brutalizing an unarmed police officer, throwing a police vehicle off a bridge and setting churches and local government buildings on fire.

Report on Brutality and Killings Committed by the Muslim Brotherhood During Clashes
(Warning: Graphic Images)

 

Read more at The Clarion Project

Egyptian troops raid pro-Morsi camps in Cairo, while violence across country leaves dozens dead

2013-635120751325751680-575Fox News:

Egyptian security forces in riot gear swept in with armored vehicles and bulldozers to clear two protest camps in Cairo Wednesday, igniting clashes with pro-Morsi supporters as violence flared across Egypt, leaving more than 50 people dead and hundreds injured.

Khaled el-Khateeb, an Egyptian Health Ministry official, told the Associated Press that clashes between Morsi protesters and security forces killed at least 28 people in Cairo, 25 in Minya province south of the capital and one each in the cities of Alexandria, Assiut and Ban Suef. Sky News also said that Mick Deane, a cameraman, was among the dead.

The camps cleared Wednesday had been the catalyst of protests since former President Mohammed Morsi was overthrown by the Egypt’s military on July 3, with thousands calling for his reinstatement.

The Muslim Brotherhood’s political arm, which backs Morsi, claimed that more than 500 protesters were killed and some 9,000 wounded in the two camps, but those figures could not be confirmed and nothing in Associated Press footage or local TV networks suggested such a high death toll.

Mohammed el-Beltagy, a senior Brotherhood leader, put the death toll at more than 300 and called on the police and army troops to mutiny against their commanders and on Egyptians to take to the streets to show their disapproval of Wednesday’s raids on the sit-ins.

“Oh, Egyptian people, your brothers are in the square … Are you going to remain silent until the genocide is completed?” said el-Beltagy, who was arrested after Egyptian police cleared an area around the Rabaa al-Adawiya mosque, security officials told Reuters.

Army troops did not take part in the two Cairo operations, but provided security. Police and army helicopters hovered over both sites as plumes of smoke rose over the city skyline hours after the police launched the simultaneous actions shortly after 7 a.m. local time.

“At 7 a.m. they came. Helicopters from the top and bulldozers from below. They smashed through our walls. Police and soldiers, they fired tear gas at children,” Saleh Abdulaziz, a 39-year-old teacher, told Reuters.”They continued to fire at protesters even when we begged them to stop.”

A Reuters correspondent said pools of blood were everywhere, with dozens of people lying in the street after suffering bullet and birdshot wounds.

Read more at Fox News

Egypt MB Protests Underscore Hypocrisy of America’s Islamists

by John Rossomando
IPT News
July 31, 2013

Egyptian General: Hamas Smuggled Rockets to Muslim Brotherhood

Palestinians look at homemade rockets during a Palestinian heritage exhibition a festival marking the 61st anniversary of the Nakba (catastrophe) on April 27, 2009, in Gaza (photo credit: Abed Abed/Flash90)

Palestinians look at homemade rockets during a Palestinian heritage exhibition a festival marking the 61st anniversary of the Nakba (catastrophe) on April 27, 2009, in Gaza (photo credit: Abed Abed/Flash90)

by John Rossomando:

 

Egypt’s Morsi gone, military brings hope not coup

An Egyptian man carries a portrait of Defense Minister Gen. Abdel Fattah al-Sisi AFP

An Egyptian man carries a portrait of Defense Minister Gen. Abdel Fattah al-Sisi AFP

Voice of the Copts, by Dr. Ashraf Ramelah:

As the country rejoices, Egyptians fear jihad will turn into civil war. The military removed and jailed President Morsi on the demands of the people, and now Morsi’s angry remnant – defenders of the dishonored, ousted Muslim Brotherhood — roam the streets in bloodthirsty revenge. Instigated by President Morsi’s June 26th and 28th speeches, the Muslim Brotherhood and their sympathizers terrorize Egyptian neighborhoods. All who are happy to have Morsi gone – ordinary citizens and Egyptian military — becomes their enemy.
Where does the United States stand on this battleground?
Now, after Morsi, Egypt’s military plays the role of transitional authority and guardian without taking power. The army has not seized power from the government or sought violence. The military has not grabbed positions, control, or command as a consequence of the people’s rebellion. Instead, it continues to support Egypt’s revolutionary democratic movement and keep law and order after removing the President. The army is facilitating the appropriate legal course and changeover in the government according to guidelines provided in Egypt’s previous constitution — correctly “freezing” Morsi’s Sharia law constitution rejected by the majority.
Egypt’s military performed dutifully toward its countrymen resolving the June 30th issue with perfect timing as it rejected the bait of “dialogue.” This resulted in a miraculous turnover for Egypt. Unlike SCAF’s dirty compromises after the overthrow of Mubarak, this army is supervising the transference of power from Morsi’s regime to the president of the High Constitutional Court, Adly Monsour, who is now the interim President of Egypt. In siding responsibly with freedom fighters Egypt’s army has forgone political empowerment.
This is the stunning part; the part that the media around the world seems to be missing.
Claiming Egypt’s military action as a military coup is dangerous for this plays into the hands of the radical views of a vindictive and deceptive Muslim Brotherhood now threatening warfare on Egypt. It is as wrong as the “Arab Spring” label before it. Some in the media even suggest that the July 3rd removal of the terror-backed, Shariah law advocate overreaching his executive powers to build a parallel Saudi-like brown squad and much worse, defies democratic principles. Even if this were true, Egypt must first clean house of democracy’s enemies in order to begin its democratic process. Innocent Egyptians are at risk if, based upon such views, the U.S. halts aid (the $1.3 billion commitment) to an Egyptian military aligned with freedom-fighters.
Why did the army act as a trustworthy steward of the people’s non-violent Tamarud (Rebel) movement, intervening and demanding Morsi comply with their petition request? It is difficult to say. There is no indication that the military, which just played the role of mediator and protector of the people, will turn the tables in a power grab nor is there evidence to the contrary. More importantly, the army remains unified against the Muslim Brotherhood. Egypt’s sequel depends on one figure, Commander-in-chief Abdel Fattah El Sisi.
While in office, Commander-in-chief Morsi moved around army officers like chess pieces securing in part loyalty to his regime in many areas as in the replacement of Mohammad Tantawi, head commander of Egyptian Armed Forces, with Abdel Fattah El Sisi on 12 August 2012. Given more time to complete his gradual plan, Morsi was to make a total overturn of military leadership to Muslim Brotherhood loyalists, including El Sisi, who was former head of military intelligence under Mubarak. Now it is El Sisi who put the army at odds with Morsi. He responded to the country’s unrest as the Tamarud petition grew with millions of signatures, making multiple requests for all political interests in Egypt to come together for talks – including freedom-fighters, Muslim Brotherhood, and Morsi. Morsi refused and no talks occurred.
Referring to the Muslim Brotherhood-backed Morsi regime, El Sisi made known his loyalties before June 30th protests when he said, “When we see that Egyptians are under threat and we are not able to defend them, it is better we die.” Finally, on behalf of Egyptians, El Sisi delivered a 48-hour notice to Morsi to leave office, which Morsi rejected. After handcuffing the President on July 3rd, the army naturally began to arrest and jail Brotherhood figures and to dismantle their power structure out of fear that certain leaders would instigate violence. This included the arrest of Khairat el-Shaiter, Vice Morshed (vice-spiritual guide) of the Muslim Brotherhood, who was declared ineligible for a 2012 presidential bid because he escaped a seven year prison sentence for money laundering to the banned Muslim Brotherhood.
Confiscating classified documents from el-Shaiter’s villa residence upon his arrest, the military received information damaging to America’s pro-democracy position. The army claims these files show the U.S. gave more than $8 billion to Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood upon el-Shaiter’s White House visit in April of 2012. Now the central focus of the Egyptian army in its battle against the Muslim Brotherhood is on the U.S. administration.
Upon Morsi’s removal, the U.S. ran to Morsi’s defense by threatening the Egyptian army with cutting off U.S. aid. Unfazed, an army spokesman responded with a statement pertaining to the army’s plans to publicly unveil the contents of the incriminating documents. The Egyptian military intends to embarrass the U.S. using Egyptian TV and the international media to air court hearings concerning these documents which link U.S. interests to the rise and support of the Muslim Brotherhood.
Other hidden documents discovered by the army in Brotherhood Al Fayyum offices reveal that Morsi received fewer votes in the 2012 Presidential election than his opponent, Shafiq. Suspicion of U.S. involvement in this matter runs high among Egyptians. It has from the day Morsi was announced President. Back then the U.S. administration was silent on the issue of Egypt’s election fraud.
The U.S. also overlooked the mysterious delay in the announcement of Morsi’s win (some say America was behind it) and, without comment, accepted a reversal of opinion from the electoral judge on the issue of unopened voting polls in Coptic neighborhoods where the judge pointedly condemned it and then suddenly dismissed it as irrelevant. How is it that these items were excluded from the efforts of the Obama administration to “broaden engagement” in the Egyptian post-revolutionary scene.
The tacit U.S. of recent past is now vocal. The Obama administration asserts its influence by requesting Morsi’s return. Before June 30th, U.S. concerns tried to suppress pro-democracy freedom forces particularly through private meetings initiated by the U.S. ambassador. The U.S. now questions Egyptian protocol regarding its military. We should be doubly outraged toward America and German-led Europe in calling for the reinstatement of Morsi to lead Egyptians — who neither voted in fair elections to have him nor want him after a one-year term of anti-democratic maneuvers – for that calling of a reversal of freedom’s magnanimous feat demonstrates America’s allegiance to the lies of the Muslim Brotherhood.
Thankfully, the army looks to avoid bloodshed by keeping Morsi under house arrest protected from a disenchanted Muslim Brotherhood ready to assassinate him and spark mayhem – legitimizing violence to hold on to power. So far, the military’s power is the power of the people. We do not see a military coup in Egypt, but an Egyptian army honoring the sea of waving red cards stating “get out” – the only “weapon” wielded by freedom protesters to rid a deplorable ruler. In a soccer match, a referee pushes the red card into the face of a foul player in the field to signal him unacceptable and too dangerous to remain in the game. Now Mohammad Morsi is out of the game. He must stay that way for good.
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MEMRI – Egypt Defense Minister General Al-Sisi on Morsi’s Ouster: The People Felt Terrified and Imprisoned