Some argue that the actual definition without any bias of what happened recently in Egypt is “a military coup against the democratically elected president”. I do not see anything wrong in admitting that what happened was a military coup, but let us discuss very briefly selected points on what President Mohamed Morsi did for Egypt during this past year, which resulted in such a situation. It is important to stress that the focus on criticizing the Muslim Brotherhood and President Mohamed Morsi here is only because they were the ones in power, and criticizing authority is necessary if deviated from the right path for the future. If the ruling party or current were different I would focus on and criticize all their mistakes too.
▪ The substitute candidate: The first time the Egyptians were introduced to President Mohamed Morsi on a wide basis was when the Muslim Brotherhood pushed two candidates for the presidency, one of them the original and represents the first choice of the Brotherhood and the second a substitute. This act represents the tradition of the MB that has been followed in the parliamentary elections in the Mubarak era; which is to have more than one candidate where one of them is known to the security and often also to the public, while the other candidate is to an extent unknown to the people and the security services. So if the security services prevent the main candidate for some reason the substitute candidate gets all the Muslim Brotherhood supporters votes, who are not affected by candidates but is guided by higher orders. The Brotherhood had the right strategy as the original candidate was stopped from participating in the presidential election because of the existence of a criminal record for him, and from here Mohamed Morsi appeared as the first and only choice of the Muslim Brotherhood until he won the presidency.
The most essential observation is that we are not dealing with an independent candidate, but with a representative of the “Office of the guidance” of the Muslim Brotherhood that does not enjoy the independence in decisions due to the fact that he is under the pledge of an allegiance (baia’a) to the head of the Brotherhood, and that he has a direct official in the organization.
As a result of the foregoing we see very clearly that our critique for this year’s policies should be addressed to the MB selections through its representative at the head of the institution of the presidency and not to the person of the president.
▪ An early threat of violence: The Brotherhood mobilized its supporters in Tahrir square after the end of the voting process of the presidential election where the campaign of Mohamed Morsi announced winning margin of 1.5% even before the announcement of the official results by the competent Election Committee by several days. During these days the leaders of the Brotherhood repeated declaring the victory of their candidate and threatened that if any other result was declared that the country would enter into a state of violence and chaos. The crisis ended by the official announcement of Mohamed Morsi´s victory of the presidency, but it left a wound of fear that would never heal in the Egyptian people.
▪ Election promises: The Muslim Brotherhood sought to gain the support of the youth and revolutionary forces in the second round of the presidential election as Mohamed Morsi only had the support of nearly a quarter of the votes in the first round, and from here the Brotherhood organized an extended meeting with revolutionary youth and other political groups that refuse military rule. The output of the meeting was an agreement on the implementation of some consensual items in exchange for the support of the revolutionary and civil forces to Morsi in the runoff. I would strongly argue that the small margin of Mohamed Morsi´s Victory (1.5%) would not have occurred if not this event had taken place which made Morsi the consensus candidate of the revolution and led to a lot of votes from young people and opponents of the old regime and military rule.
Morsi did not implement any item that was part of the agreement from the large meeting, such as the formation of a government of national unity, reducing the privileges of the military council or the restructuring of the Constituent Assembly of the Constitution so it represented all groups of the Egyptian society rather than its formation that was totally controlled by the religious current representatives, but what he did instead was protecting all his decisions and the formation of the Constituent Assembly of the Constitution against the probability of any appeal or judicial ruling that could invalidate it by ordering a constitutional declaration launched in November 2012 which granted him absolute powers in all the authorities of the state.
▪The constitution: Due to years of work with awareness raising on constitutional law and training to explain the freedoms and constitutional rights to young people in various governors in Egypt for several years before the revolution of January 25, 2011, I was very interested in all the stages of formulating the constitution in great detail, starting with the formation of the constitution committee until the referendum of the constitution. Due to the enormity of the problem and depth of the tragedy in all the steps of manufacturing this “document”, I am choosing to focus on several points that I find scandalous and revealing of the inferior level that the Brotherhood used in creating the constitution of Egypt.
1) The founding committee of the constitution is dominated by members of Islamic current who are illiterate within political and legal issues to a limit that flyers that contained definitions of systems of governance were distributed in committee assemblies, presidential, parliamentary and semi-presidential, all defined in a paragraph consisting of 10-15 lines. It is worth mentioning that this is the first information that some members received on systems of governance in their lives.
2) The system that was promoted by the members of Muslim Brotherhood in the committee is the semi-parliamentary. When a civil member of the committee questioned that the system does not exist in the theories of the political science, the discussion of that point was delayed for two months and the question was answered by referring to an article written by a Portuguese professor on the semi-presidential system as being the semi-parliamentary system ignoring the legal, political, constitutional and logical basis for that reference! This scandal was recorded in the minutes of the committee of formulating the constitution upon request of this member, just for documenting this historical scandal!
3) The powers of the prime minister are fully similar to the powers of the president in all internal matters, which creates a legal disaster in case that the president and the prime minister are from two different political wings.
4) Although the Islamic current had a majority in all the general committees and sub-committees, the sub-committee of the system of government voted on a proposal that a member from the civil current presented which was contrary to the proposal of the Muslim Brotherhood on an article on local governance in the constitution stating that municipal system should be bicameral and not unicameral as the Brotherhood member wanted, because of the existence of suspicions on governmental corruption and possible control of over 52 thousand jobs in the localities in case that the Muslim Brotherhood proposal -of a unicameral- was approved. Later on the brotherhood constitutional committee observers didn’t accept that loss, and they pushed the head of the “committee of the system of government” to force a re-vote on the same article as the Muslim Brotherhood committee’s coordinator invoked that the article was not clear enough. After the civil wing member explained again the background of the proposal and the motives or refusing the Muslim brotherhood proposition, and similar to the result of the first vote that was in favor of the article proposed by the member from the civil wing, so was the second vote, but still the head of the committee insisted on proposing the same article for a third vote in the general constituent committee with the excuse that the number of votes favoring each proposal was close, although the proposal of the Brotherhood had lost two votes by that moment, it was still being debated on the same grounds as the article proposed by the liberal member.
In the third round of voting in the general committee the proposal proposed by the member with civil background got for the third time the majority of the votes. The surprise was that the in result of the final version of the constitution it was stated that the current laws on that area will still apply for the next ten years until new laws for local municipals were formed and the proposal that was approved three times was totally ignored!
5) Some articles in the constitution, that the committee were voting on in the closing session that lasted to the early morning hours, were being recited in front of members for the very first time with the following comment from Ghariani: “This is a brand new article!” and then “approved?” .. “Approved!”
▪The electoral program: The Egyptian people did not expect a quick jump forward or a significant improvement of the economy or to reach the level of developed countries in a year, but they expected that some steps were taken towards creating suitable foundations worthy of the revolution that was carried out by millions of Egyptians and that Morsi was elected to head. No achievement were made through this fictional program called “Nahda” that the Brotherhood built all the its presidential campaign on, but we discovered that many of the leaders of the Muslim Brotherhood do not even know what this “Nahda” program essentially is.
The same thing applies to the promises of the first 100 days as none of it was implemented and matters only got worse in all fields starting from the fuel, where a severe shortage occurred, to waste that the government almost stopped collecting to security that has created a continues fear among all Egyptians, and finally the traffic situation, that become a daily waste of energy and time in most of the big cities of Egypt.
However, The Egyptians are characterized by conviction and the ability to adapt to circumstances and these circumstances were far from the reason behind the dissatisfaction of the people, yet the media machine of the Muslim Brotherhood continued promoting achievements and successes that did not exist on the ground to the point that they sometimes considered the pain and daily suffering of the Egyptians as rumors that the opposition and private media promoted against the Muslim Brotherhood president to reduce their popularity!
Among the are some vital issues such as the wheat harvest rate, where numbers where published bigger in the media which is completely contrary to the reality, and the willingness of foreign countries to borrow Egypt billions of dollars that also was completely untrue.
▪ The Brotherhood: There is a lot to be said about the fact that Mohamed Morsi is a member of an international organization that is illegal –according to national law- and that made him since he took office gather all documents and files of the security agencies such as “The State Security” on Egyptian security details and on terrorist organizations, and also the continuous attempts to get numbers and data from the Central Auditing Agency with the detailed composition to compose an independent database for him and the Brotherhood. But we will only mention some quick points to denote the difference and diversity of threats that have arisen as a result of the inevitable overlapping loyalties and priorities in the first year of a Morsi in the presidency.
1) Giving executive, moral, social and semi-presidential powers to the leadership of the Muslim Brotherhood that were not officially belonging to the Freedom and Justice Party and has not been elected or even appointed in any governmental position such as;
– Businessman and deputy leader of MB guide “Al-Shater” who took over the political issues, such as the relations with Qatar – the largest financier of the Brotherhood – and the worldwide promotion of the “Nahda” project. Al-Shater also received economic privileges of governmental outsourcing to his companies in the field of public procurement tenders and other issues related to clear governmental corruption without any opportunity for fair competition with other businessmen.
– The businessman “Hassan Malek” who got the responsibility of negotiating with businessmen who left the country with fear to escape from the Brotherhood rule to return on the basis of a deduction of approximately 40% of their wealth and purchasing it in cooperation with businessmen of the Brotherhood, besides managing his many companies Malek also manages the organization “EBDA’A” that cooperates with the Ministry of Supply in the distribution and storage of food supplies to the Egyptians in direct outsourcing and clear governmental corruption in addition to the suspicion of the Brotherhood’s mismanagement of the resources of the Ministry of Supply!
– Mohamed Badie leader –guide- of Muslim Brotherhood and attempted by the Brotherhood to give a higher religious degree in the hearts of the Egyptians but failed big time. Badie has extremists opinions on some of the members of the opposition parties in which some include claims of calling persons non-believers and promoting a defensive atmosphere to Islam against secular, liberal and other opposition groups among his supports to promote division in the Egyptian society on a sectarian basis.
2) The international branch of the Brotherhood represents for Morsi a difficulty on loyalty issues that no member of the Brotherhood can get rid of. If loyalty and universal belonging to a group was natural and logical in the Middle Ages, it is now part of the box of betrayal and espionage in the modern age, especially if this relationship of internationalism include secret exchange of information, funds and intercontinental commands that also include secret and unofficial mechanisms outside the scope of any political or modern tool of diplomacy.
This point is complicated and can require a lot of details;therefore we only concentrate on the role of Hamas to illustrate the mentioned point. The role of Hamas is suspicious in all its events in Egypt since January 25, 2011, and until this day today, and I expect that details on this suspicious relationship will be reveled on how the Brotherhood let Hamas impose its political views on the Egyptian state sometimes, and how it took over the security control of the Gaza border tunnels, and its involvement in Sinai and other issues in which the logical size and influence of Hamas should not allow unless it was in the presence of a president with a background in the Muslim Brotherhood with secret, mutual understanding and communication.
3) President Morsi began quickly with the so-called “akhwana” of the state that means “brotherhoodsation” of state, which is a bit logical as he did win the presidential seat. It began with the brotherhoodsation of the employees in the directorates of health and education institutions, which raise serious suspicions as these employees, are responsible of the election boxes next to judges and police officials. The brotherhoodsation continued gradually and included in the end of the year most of the ministers and governors and senior civil servants. Despite the scarcity of qualified Muslim Brotherhood members their poor performance was clear for everyone to the point of pity, however, the Media continued to promote the achievements that don’t exists and ignore the reality, for example in its way of dealing with the preparations to the 30-6 demonstrations and the great denial of what was going on in the streets weeks before the 30-6 protests.
▪ The Islamic project: One of the popular imams summed the contribution of President Mohamed Morsi to the Islamic project days ago, saying: “At least Morsi did not oppose Islam.” This statement might seem ironic, but in fact it carries a big part of the truth, as the so-called Islamic project has moved from the stage of mystery before Morsi to a severe foggy stage after a year of his presidency.
One of the only things that characterize the Islamic project in the era of President Morsi is the rhetoric and the appearance of the Morsi. President Morsi is bearded and his too many speeches are filled with Islamic references and sectarian hints. He was supported by bearded men and veiled women from the Brotherhood that supported him with religious words and Quranic analogies. His Prime Minister and his ministers and presidential staff tend to also practice the Sunnah. The President prays Friday prayers and mentions the Sahabah in the Shiite Iran!
But as for executive steps towards the Islamic project, they almost don’t not exist except for more freedoms and support to the Islamic institutions that exist for the benefit of increasing the followers and potential voters of the Islamic bloc, and the release of hundreds of jihadists detainees and the increase in the rhetoric of claiming that everyone who does not belong to the Muslim Brotherhood is a betrayer and a non-believer.
Perhaps one of the ironic things is that one of the most important principles of Islamic economics is the prohibition of interest rate, as that specific principle was being twisted around so that Morsi could travel around the world to East and West and get loans that could reach the amount of 30 billion dollars with a high interest rate, but in the end he did not get any of these loans because of his clear failure in achieving political, security and economic stability.
The violence that occurred in Sinai and that will continue to occur in the coming years is a direct result of opening the door to around (hundreds – several thousands) of jihadists that were released from prisons or that returned from Afghanistan and strengthen their presence in Sinai and help them build ties to the young members of the Sinai tribes, and next to that prevent the military to handle them despite the fact that they had previously committed crimes against Egyptian soldiers. Morsi reacted to the events in Sinai during this year by only sending two committees that could communicate with the jihadists on two different occasions.
▪ The juridical system: It seems that the dissolution of the Parliament days before the election of President Morsi left a serious negative impact on the Brotherhood that led them to take revenge on the judges in general beginning from the Supreme Constitutional Court that they tried to change the compositions of entirely in the new constitution after that they had blocked the court by a sit-in around it for weeks so they could avoid the possibility of the court issuing a rule that invalidate the constitution committee and the Shura council. In addition to that the there is the Judicial Authority Law where they threatened to isolate 3000 judges and finally the attack on specific judges by name in the speeches of the President and his supporters and in religious channels and threats of encircling their homes.
The funny thing about this situations is that for the Muslim Brotherhood it is all about replacing the existent judges and juridical personnel with others with a background in the Muslim brotherhood instead of concentrating on the big percentage of nepotism and corruption in the juridical institution that is can equated to the percentage of corruption in other fields as for example the medical, legal and petroleum industry and in most of the other fields in Egypt which provide a high level of income.
The end of Morsi: The moment of Morsi´s end came in his last speech after that huge crowds went down to the street estimated at (17 million Egyptian police estimate – 33 million estimate for CNN) to demand the Brotherhood to leave. Morsi shocked the Egyptians by estimating the crowds to be 137 000! And here begins the journey of denial again. The only presidency response to the protests that called for Morsi to leave was by stating in a conference that there was an incident of rape, and that the violent incidents –which did not exceed the number of one hand’s fingers- happened in that specific day, and that was all the presidency response!
The rebellious group “Tamarod” succeeds in collecting 22 million signatures demanding early presidential elections. The Egyptian people met the young people and volunteers of “Tamarod” campaign in the capital and other big cities as well as small villages collecting signatures for several long days on the corners of the streets, in transportation, in gatherings and on the Internet so the campaign took the form of a “peaceful, political and popular” event for weeks. People went down to the streets on the 30th of June in peaceful demonstrations calling the elected president to show confidence and declare an early presidential election.
The Egyptian armed forces saw that the reaction of the president against his opponents among the Egyptian people was full of denial and contained encouragement of violence all to keep the chair of the presidency and that he doesn’t see the reality considerately.
He is a delegate of the Brotherhood that thinks that getting the power is a delegated authority from God to infinity without any accountability. After these recent developments the continuance of Morsi in office became a blatant threat to the Egyptian national security. The army carried a decision that was supported by a majority of popular demand by the isolation of the President. El-Baradei stood on the same podium after general Sisi as a representative of the revolution. The imam of Azhar gave his speech on the same podium as the representative of the Egyptian moderate Islam. Pope of Orthodox Church was sitting besides the National gathering reassuring the end of the era of fear experienced by Christians in Egypt.
Finally, wasn’t the military coup that was handed to the Brotherhood after a transition period to protect the legitimacy of the people already once a happy ending to the 18 days of Jan. 25?!
Egyptians has spoken, and the real revolution is part of the official ruling now!
(posted in arabic in 5/7/2013)