Allowing the Egyptian state to fall

Abdel Latif el-Menawy

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From the very first moments and till the regime was actually topped, I and many others warned of the difference between toppling a regime and toppling a state. During the past two years, there have been attempts at destroying, or at least dwarfing, the pillars of the state. Several political and youth factions took part in those attempts unknowingly after being deceived by other factions that have clear goals so that they ended up not differentiating between toppling a regime and toppling a state.

Organized attacks have recently targeted the main pillars of the state like security, economy, relations between political factions, the judiciary, and the army. Some of those attempts relatively succeeded in affecting many of those pillars while other institutions managed to rescue themselves. What is certain is that we are now paying for what Egypt has witnessed during the past two years.

Available options

We are still facing the same challenges, for we were deceived into thinking that we have reached stability while the truth is that the ruling clique, which is not different from the one that remained in power till the end of 2010, decided to monopolize power in the country. We are left with one of two options: either giving in or engaging in confrontations. It is not clear why the ruling faction is trying to destroy the pillars of society through instigating conflicts between the police and the people so that one of the two has to be repressed. What is also not clear is this indifference towards the financial conditions of the country, and making it seem like the best achievement is securing more loans and the most effective economic initiative is selling a bank or a financial institution to Qatar or importing more goods from Turkey.

Those attempts at undermining the pillars of the state have shaken confidence in the judiciary and created a rift among its ranks for it has now been divided into camps and Egypt has become a stage for intrigues while courts are busy with all sorts of futile cases. This led to a conflict in which one party has to fall, leading eventually to the division of society and the collapse of the judiciary. Add to that attempts and statements by the ruling power about the Armed Forces and which reveal a desire to dwarf the military institution, a matter that is bound to be met with resistance on the part of all factions that care about the security of the nation.

Endless turmoil?

For the state to face dangers during time of turmoil is understandable, but it is neither understandable nor acceptable for this situation to continue under a ruling political power that was expected to protect state institutions and allow them to fall or even take part in that.

Abdel Latif al-Menawy is an author, columnist and multimedia journalist who has covered conflicts around the world. He is the author of "Tahrir: the last 18 days of Mubarak," a book he wrote as an eyewitness to events during the 18 days before the stepping down of former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak. Menawy’s most recent public position was head of Egypt’s News Center. He is a member of the National Union of Journalists in the United Kingdom, and the Egyptian Journalists Syndicate. He can be found on Twitter @ALMenawy

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