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The future of Egypt - far from certain.

There is a particular danger in the way things came about in Egypt. When
the non-experienced take the reins of government, it takes time to learn how
to make things happen. Popular ideas can have detrimental consequences.
Who would oppose higher wages, but the implementation can bankrupt
governments and private employers alike. This is not to say that Egyptians
did not have valid complaints, but that a smooth transition of government
requires time, lot’s of time.

The Military of Egypt has several months to learn how to govern, to solidify their
power, and to decide if they want to give it up. In this case, a military dictatorship could
be the best short term result, but rarely does a military dictatorship maintain respect for
Human Rights. Conversely, many nations have relied on the military to step up when
the political taskmasters go awry.

The future of Egypt is far from certain. The parliamentary system in place in most of the
rest of the world's democracies, including Egypt, allows for minority parties to have
great influence, while major parties are shut out of the process. Despite the desires of
the average protester, Egypt could become a military dictatorship, an Islamist state, or a
shining example of democracy in the Middle East, but it was already one of the most
free in the Middle East, and about the closest thing to a moderate government.

Egypt was a place for diplomacy to be used, where rational discussion between US
Diplomats could have influenced Mubarak towards greater democracy over the last 2
years. The new rulers of Egypt may not be as friendly to US Interests or as interested in
peace with Israel. We won't know the results for weeks, months, or years.

What we do know is that those that fail to understand history are doomed to
repeat it. What we do know is that protests against friendly governments
are breaking out across the Middle East. What we do know is that those
sparked in Tunisia, where it all started, have brought a return of Islamists
What we do know is that many of those countries have much greater support for
Islamist Terrorism. What we do know is that the current United States Administration
was silent when Persians protested Iran's fraudulent elections. What we do know is that
many populist movements have led to majority oppression.

The end of Mubarak's reign and the likely reforms of Egypt's political
system make for an unpredictable, nervous period; in 2005 the Muslim
Brotherhood won 88 seats in parliament, or about 20 percent; the leadership
of the MB at the time was more pragmatic and actively sought to be involved
in the country's politics; in January 2010 the leadership of the MB was
changed, and a more religiously conservative, but also a more politically
aloof, leaders are now at the helm; moreover, the MB historically has been
the only movement to take on the regime, and as a result it has enjoyed what
analysts regard as an inflated support; the demonstrations of the last two
weeks show that there are many movements and groups now willing to
participate in the political process; this means that Egypt's silent
majority will have alternatives to the MB at the polls; the trouble: there
may be too many alternatives, risking splitting the secular vote, thus
allowing the MB to emerge as one of the largest, if not the largest, party
in the post-September elections parliament.

What will be the regional ramifications of a more open political system in Egypt, and
what will be the consequences for the European Union and The United States security
and economic interests in the region?

The answers are yet to be determined by what will develop next throughout the region
and how the World Powers will react to the “Egyptian Revolution” being exported to the
other Muslim countries in the region.

So far, so good : “Egypt's new ruling military council has appointed a fundamentalist
Islamic judge to head the committee drawing up a new constitution, validating the
warnings of those of us who argued that last week's revolution would deliver
the country to the Muslim Brotherhood”. While media quislings rejoice over the advent
of the worst of times, the "secular" (whatever the hell that ever meant) landscape of
Egypt rapidly disintegrates. But the make-up of the new committee, and the fact it has
been given just ten days to come up with a new constitution, has dashed hopes that it
will remove Article 2, which makes Islam the state religion and says Shariah is the main
source of law.
Of course the Obama administration "welcomed" these developments.

Lt Gen Sami Enan, the chief of staff, was immediately welcomed by the Muslim
Brotherhood - as well as by the United States, which said it regarded him as
very "professional".

Feb. 17.2011

Mircea Halaciuga, Esq.


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