Sunday, November 25, 2012

Egypt Revolts Again

Anti-Morsi Demonstration   [Mother Jones]
Click here for related story [AP/Washington Post]

Egypt is again erupting in political protests; this time against President Morsi's declaration of his immunity from legal restraints as he assumes dictatorial powers.  As we've noted before, Mr Morsi took power with the full support of the Muslim Brotherhood, and President Obama.

Huma Abedin - Muslim Brotherhood Link [Reuters]
The Egyptian citizens, meanwhile, were unhappy with the Muslim Brotherhood's hijacking of their rebellion against President Mubarek, and protested vehemently against Hillary Clinton when she paid a congratulatory visit to Cairo to welcome Mr Morsi as an ally and close friend of Mr Obama.

The Egyptians were quite unhappy with Mr Obama's linkage to the Muslim Brotherhood, which seemed to be validated by Secretary Clinton's selection of Huma Mahmood Abedin -- whose family is intimately tied to the Muslim Brotherhood -- as her Deputy Chief of Staff and principal advisor on the Middle East.

[Ms Clinton studiously ignores her State Department Middle East desk officers and INR intelligence analysts].

Pharaoh Morsi?                         [inedc]
Mr Morsi, in an act reminiscent of Mr Obama's 140+ Executive Orders, declared immunity from judicial oversight for his Islamist-panel tasked with creating a new Constitution.  The Panel would marginalize women and minority Christians, and severely restrict personal liberties.  He has also announced/decreed that none of his decisions are subject to judicial appeal; and, he has declared that the Supreme Court has no authority to challenge any of his actions.

Notably, some of his decrees are remarkably similar to the content of Mr Obama's Executive Orders; for example,

1) "The President can take any steps necessary to prevent threats to 'the revolution, the life of the nation or national unity and security' or to the functioning of state institutions."

2) "Creation of a new judiciary body of "protection of the revolution" to conduct investigations, prosecutions and trials of former officials."

Parliament has been neutered following the dissolution of the lower house which was dominated by the Muslim Brotherhood; in its absence, Mr Morsi can now rule by decree.

Mohamed ElBaradei           [AP]

The Pro-reform leader Mohamed ElBaradei [former Director of the IAEA] announced via Twitter:
"Morsi today usurped all state powers and appointed himself Egypt's new Pharaoh - a major blow to the revolution."

Morsi, since taking office, has sought to undercut the military leadership, and has curried favor with the police force commanders, many of whom had been charged with [but acquitted of] corruption charges.  We suspect he will surround himself with carefully selected military leaders whom he can trust to eliminate any potential opposition.

That would follow the pattern established by Hosni Mubarek when he engineered the assassination of Anwar Sadat in 1981.  Miraculously, Mr Mubarek, sitting next to Sadat, survived the grenades and automatic weapon fire which killed Sadat and others sitting with them.

Miraculously, the pilots survived the fiery crash    

Mubarek, once installed as President, ordered senior officers and officials at the Defense Ministry to fly to the Libyan border to assess a potential threat of conflict.  Oddly, the helicopters crashed, killing all on board -- except the pilots.  The new generals and Defense Ministry officials were supportive of Mr Mubarek -- whose first decree was to maintain the ban on the Muslim Brotherhood.

We suspect that in the near future, a large number of Military Officers and Defense officials will suffer unusual accidental deaths; then again, Mr Morsi may be as efficient as Mubarek was in engineering a mass accident to eliminate all those who might pose a potential threat to his power.

[Mr Obama's purge of the US Military will consume considerably more time though.]