The “Deep State” is the Media’s Latest Pro-Morsi Talking Point

Daniel Greenfield, a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the Freedom Center, is a New York writer focusing on radical Islam. He is completing a book on the international challenges America faces in the 21st century.


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The Deep State… that sounds scary, right. It sounded so scary that Western diplomats turned a blind eye to Erdogan’s human rights abuses in Turkey, including grandiose conspiracy theories that seemingly involved half the country. They went along because Erdogan was fighting the evil military “Deep State” in Turkey.

Now the media’s Islamist apologists are reviving the Deep State as justification for Morsi’s tyranny. The new story is that Morsi wasn’t incompetent or an abusive ruler. He was undermined by the Deep State.

The current story is that the Deep State (drumroll) undermined Morsi’s many non-existent reforms and sought to make him unpopular.

The streets seethe with protests and government ministers are on the run or in jail, but since the military ousted President Mohamed Morsi, life has somehow gotten better for many people across Egypt: Gas lines have disappeared, power cuts have stopped and the police have returned to the street.

Good government! It’s a conspiracy. By the Secularist Deep State Militarists.

The Muslim Brotherhood and Mr. Morsi’s supporters say the sudden turnaround proves that their opponents conspired to make Mr. Morsi fail.

This is what passes for logic in the Middle East. If your leader failed… that’s just proof he was undermined.

“This was preparing for the coup,” said Naser el-Farash, who served as the spokesman for the Ministry of Supply and Internal Trade under Mr. Morsi. “Different circles in the state, from the storage facilities to the cars that transport petrol products to the gas stations, all participated in creating the crisis.”

And Morsi’s stupid decisions, like attempting to apply a means test to gasoline, surely had nothing to do with it. It was the… DEEP STATE.

Also when Morsi decided to repay Qatar for its support by buying natural their gas at premium prices, even though Egypt used to be an exporter, not an importer, that was probably the Deep State at work too.

Someone has to be blamed for it. And it can’t be Morsi who was the victim of a deep deep conspiracy. Probably the Jews are involved.

But it is the police returning to the streets that offers the most blatant sign that the institutions once loyal to Mr. Mubarak held back while Mr. Morsi was in power. Throughout his one-year tenure, Mr. Morsi struggled to appease the police, even alienating his own supporters rather than trying to overhaul the Interior Ministry. But as crime increased and traffic clogged roads — undermining not only the quality of life, but the economy — the police refused to deploy fully.

Until now.

Might this failure by the police have something to do with Morsi’s attempt to displace the police forces with Muslim Brotherhood militias?

Nah… it’s the DEEP STATE.

When Mr. Mubarak was removed after nearly 30 years in office in 2011, the bureaucracy he built stayed largely in place. Many business leaders, also a pillar of the old government, retained their wealth and influence.

And many of Egypt’s business leaders are Brotherhood members which is how it got to power so fast. But… but THE DEEP STATE.

Despite coming to power through the freest elections in Egyptian history, Mr. Morsi was unable to extend his authority over the sprawling state apparatus, and his allies complained that what they called the “deep state” was undermining their efforts at governing.

The Deep State didn’t seem to prevent Morsi’s thugs from rounding up, torturing and videotaping confessions from protesters. But maybe those protesters were also part of this evil DEEP STATE.

Meanwhile enjoy the amount of fact checking on the New York Times’ Deep State Conspirazoid article.

Because of editing errors, an article on Thursday about suspicions among some Egyptians that the end of gas and electricity shortages since the ouster of President Mohamed Morsi was evidence of a conspiracy to undermine him rendered incorrectly a description of the military’s transition plan for Egypt given by Tahani el-Gebali, a former judge on the Supreme Constitutional Court; misidentified the interim president; and misstated his position before being appointed. Ms. Gebali discussed the plan only in broad terms and said that whoever was chief of the constitutional court would become interim president; she did not name a specific individual. The interim president is Adli Mansour, not Hazem el-Beblawi, and when he was named he was chief of the constitutional court, not the former chief. (Mr. Beblawi is the interim prime minister.)

The article also included an outdated reference to a television network that publicized the drive to oust Mr. Morsi. The network was founded by an Egyptian billionaire, Naguib Sawiris, but he no longer owns it;  it is not “his” network.

I blame the Deep State for the New York Times’ fact checking failures.

  • UCSPanther

    I don’t know what’s more pathetic about Morsi: The fact that he blew the MB’s chances at ruling so quickly, or that he is blaming his failures on hidden bogeymen…

  • jakespoon

    Sounds familiar. The failures of “The Leader” are never his fault. Where have we heard this?

  • porcelainmonkey1977

    Taqiya. Kitman.