Muslim Brotherhood Makes Gains in Egypt


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On Saturday, March 19, the Egyptian people took part in their first vote since the overthrow of Hosni Mubarak. Sadly, the results of the vote give an edge to the undemocratic and Islamist forces that seek to extinguish the democracy the voters thought they were making. Parliamentary elections could come as early as June and a presidential election in September, giving the more liberal voices little time to organize to compete with the Muslim Brotherhood and Mubarak’s National Democratic Party.

Over three-fourths of voters supported the proposed amendments that included having elections before the writing of a constitution, limits on presidential emergency powers and a limit of two four-year terms for presidents. The Secretary-General of the Arab League and presidential frontrunner, Amr Moussa, voted against the amendments, as did more liberal secular parties and Coptic Christians that worry that holding elections in such a short period of time would play to the advantage of Mubarak’s party and the Islamists. Mohammed el-Baradei broke with his Brotherhood allies on the issue, causing hundreds of Islamists to throw rocks at him when he tried to vote.

A top Salafi sheikh named Mohamed Hussein Yaqoub praised the results of the vote, saying it was a victory for Islam. “That’s it. The country is ours,” he said. The Muslim Brotherhood predictably applauded the results as well, knowing it leaves minimal time for opponents to organize against them. The Wall Street Journal had reported that “political parties are sprouting like weeds,” raising the possibility that the younger and less conservative members of the Muslim Brotherhood could join other parties. This hopeful trend will now have very little time to culminate in a more encouraging political atmosphere. The Islamists and the NDP have organized for decades in Egypt and the holding of parliamentary elections as soon as June gives them a decisive opportunity to shape the future of the country.

“The main problem here is the next parliament will write the next Constitution. So then the fanatics and the Muslim Brotherhood will govern us for decades,” said Emad Gad of the Al Ahram Center for Political and Strategic Studies.

The Muslim Brotherhood says its “Freedom and Justice Party” will be formally created in the coming weeks, though the chairman, Mohammed Katatni, tries to cast it as an independence party. The Brotherhood’s leadership admits creating it and Katanani is a senior Brotherhood member. This is a transparent attempt to pull the wool over the eyes of voters and the West. The group is also planning to begin a new satellite television program and various publications including a monthly newspaper. The secular parties besides NDP are simply outmatched.

This means that the parliame two strongest parties going into the parliamentary elections are the NDP and the Muslim Brotherhood, leaving the secular democratic forces without a strong voice. The scenario is not much better for the secular forces in the presidential election held later, as Ayman Nour seems unable to draw the kind of attention that El-Baradei and Moussa can. The weaknesses of these three candidates give the Brotherhood an opportunity to win the presidency later this year.

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  • Chezwick_Mac

    During the fall of Mubarak, I was over at 'Politicus' sharpening my debating skills with the Lefties…when I came across what seemed like a reasonable interlocutor. We discussed Egypt of course…and my take was that it was a mistake to trade a pseudo-ally for a potential enemy. He insisted that the "revolution" was democratic in its essence and that my projecting a MB takeover was being way too negative. I tried using logic, explaining the Brotherhood's existing organizational strength gave it an advantage over other fledgling parties, not to mention its ideological appeal to the Egyptian people. Like a true head-in-the-sand lib, he'd have none of it.

    Reminds me of that petulant adolescent, Charles Johnson, contemptuously dismissing the recent referendum in Oklahoma in which the voters overwhelmingly outlawed Sharia…writing something to the effect that only the most psychotic paranoid could envision Sharia coming to America. And of course now, we have the Florida judge, using Sharia to render judgment in a case between Muslims.

    Never underestimate the ability of a liberal to stick his head in the sand and miss the obvious.

  • ze-ev ben jehudah

    I predicted it right after Mubarak's regime was broken;the Muslim bortherhood
    will reighn the whole of the midle East and Israel will be in the midle.
    And mark my words;No one will come to the aid of the Jewish state.They will
    look the other way when final Muslim pogroms will kill every last Jew.
    So leaders of the free West,put your heads under your pillows and snore away
    because then you won't hear the death screams of the only democracy in
    the midle East. And mr Barack Hussein Obama you'll be one of the first to bow
    and hide your head under the pillows of ignorance;and I hate you for that.

    • Al ben

      Did Israel not write the book 'How to win friends and influence people'?

    • CAROLE63

      You took the words right out of my mouth!
      The muslim brotherhood will end up ruling the whole of the Middle East!
      It`s all happening just as Bible prophecy says it will, but this time God will defend Israel against the Islamic hordes!

  • Dispozovdaburka

    Obama is going to make Hitler look like Side-Show Bob
    Obama is the manifestation of the conciousness of "hate."
    He has no shadow. (no real birth certificate)
    He is blind in one eye (He is blind to all except Islam)
    And he speaks with "forked tongue." (6th degree of separation)
    No one will be immune.

  • steve

    It's rather naive to think that secular parties in Egypt will get elected by its people. Unlike a country like Iran, which can afford its independent policies because of oil and natural gas, Egypt must work with the world to secure its livelihood. A Muslim Brotherhood government should cause the US to stop foreign aide to the country. Tourism will also decrease significantly. Foreign investments will significantly decrease.

    We should remember that the Muslim Brotherhood, though duplicitous, are not stupid. The early parlimentary elections should be enough for the US to stop aiding the country. But without outside funding, the country and all the aspirations of those from Tahrir Square will not come to fruition. I expect the MBs to quietly sit as power brokers in the background.

  • masrpowa

    wow, a hot bed of zionists, pure hate here and ignorance.

    Pure racist facist orgy here. digusting. the muslim brotherhood protected the demonstrator from an army of thugs who tried to kill them. Those thugs were paid with american money to crush the democratic movement. The American/ zionist cabal will do anything in their power to stop democracy in Egypt.

    The muslim brotherhood is pro democracy and pro minority rights. the youth are in charge of that movement. Stop worrying about them and worry about your own countries that are run by fat old zionist bankers