In Egypt, political distraction continues

Abdel Latif el-Menawy

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A few months ago, we talked about distraction plans as a means of ruling the country. This has become clear in the past stage where unnecessary problems are fabricated in order to keep the people busy while the regime takes advantage of the arising controversy to usurp more power control more the state institutions.

The problem lies in the Brotherhood-ization of the country and attempts are monopolizing power in major state institutions like the police, the army, and the intelligence as well as the absence of security

Abdel Latif el-Menawy

In fact, liberal and civil groups play an important role in allowing the Muslim Brotherhood to implement this plan. They are preoccupied with side issues that create rifts in their ranks, thus providing the Muslim Brotherhood with the perfect opportunity to divide them. The examples are numerous. The issue of Mubarak’s smile and the fact that the court ordered his release in one of the lawsuits, which was not actually put into effect since he is detained on other charges, are just attempts to drag the opposition into endless disputes and this is exactly what the Muslim Brotherhood wants.

Mubarak’s smile

I follow closely emerging associations and their stances on several current issues and I will refer here to a statement issued by the Arab Center for Integrity and Transparency and in which its members expressed their surprise at the reaction of Islamist factions to Mubarak’s smile and the release verdict and the way they focused too much on those two issues especially regarding the unjustified fierce campaign they launched against the judiciary for the court order.

“Islamist factions,” said the statement, “Found in those two issues a means of distracting the people from their failure in running the country, which is on the verge of collapsing on both the political and the economic levels. That is why we found them talking at the Consultative Assembly about Mubarak’s smile and found radical Islamists and former terrorists vow that the former president would not get away with what he did. Others even said that the former prosecutor general is the one who paved the way for the court even if without specifying how that was possible.”

This, the statement added, is nothing but a way to divert the attention from the regime’s failures and possibly also to pass certain laws without stirring the indignation of the people. It is no longer about how Mubarak looked or how he will be tried, but the problem lies in what it has all boiled down to in the country and which is demonstrated in soaring prices, nonstop crisis, election laws, and the IMF loan.

Uniting civil factions?

The problem lies in the Brotherhood-ization of the country and attempts are monopolizing power in major state institutions like the police, the army, and the intelligence as well as the absence of security. The problem lies in this political crises in which the opposition is totally ignored and in which a people staged a revolution to demand freedom and social justice then ended up with a totalitarian system that is no different from its predecessor the former ruling National Democratic Party.

“That is why we are warning the Egyptian people of taking this bait and allowing themselves to be distracted from the real objectives for which many sacrificed their lives and to allow the hijackers of the revolution to reap the fruits. This is part of a plan to monopolize power and the people will be the losing party since they will suffer from more hunger, division, and weakness while they face a group that is an expert in conspiracies, deals, and manipulation.”

When former Prime Minister Ahmed Shafik, considered one of the symbols of the old regime, announced his willingness to join the main opposition bloc the National Salvation Front, the front’s reaction to this statement and their preoccupation with it betrayed its members’ unawareness of this plan.

All civil factions need to unite if they want to keep the Egypt we have always known and we have always wanted to see.
Abdel Latif el-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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