The Muslim Brotherhood had the chance to govern Egypt after winning elections fair and square a year ago.
But instead of governing and protecting all Egyptians as their civil responsibility and civic duty dictate, the Muslim Brotherhood divided, polarized and proved beyond any doubt that political Islam - just like militant Islam - will never be inclusive. As a consequence, it will never be accepted in the mainstream without major concessions and multiple metamorphoses. In addition, President Mursi wasted the momentum of the revolution and allowed problems to fester all the while pretending the situation is rosy, unable to admit his presidency’s weaknesses or pitfalls.
According to Mursi’s own logic, he cannot stay! According to his own prediction, he shall go!Octavia Nasr
While Egypt was sinking further economically, politically and socially, Mursi and his Brotherhood showed no sympathy to the suffering masses. Instead of unifying the country and finding solutions to urgent problems and challenges, they turned their backs on the opposition and focused their attention on harassing, prosecuting and jailing activists, bloggers, entertainers and journalists for the “crime” of disagreeing with them or criticizing them.
Political Islam is fundamentalist and exclusive by nature. It survives and thrives on animosity and persecution. It feeds off of the underdog sentiment and it attracts certain masses around it, controls them and directs them any which way it wants: To the streets when needed or to the ballot boxes.
With one order, a custom-tailored audience can be activated. It can grow from small to large to fit the size needed for any given event. They can also be manipulated to be violent or peaceful based on the need of its leadership. The problem of Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood is not in the numbers it can and will produce on demand; its problem resides in its inability to “govern” fairly as it has proven in the past year it cannot represent more than its own beneficiaries.
Homes truths on the MB
On this historic juncture for Egypt, let us remember this:
The Muslim Brotherhood had no significant role in Egypt’s revolution in 2011 and the fall of Hosni Mubarak that ensued.
The Muslim Brotherhood has said early on that it will not seek political representation and that it will not run in elections.
Mohammed Mursi ran for the highest office on the promise to listen to the people and allow them to express themselves and to have a constitution and congress that represent them and protect them. He even said in a TV interview once, perhaps a premonition of what is to come, “No president of Egypt will remain in office if the people are not satisfied with him,” and called on Egyptians to demonstrate against him if he does not abide by the constitution and the law.
Mr. Mursi has certainly gotten his chance to lead. He was elected democratically and he has had a year in office to prove whether he meant what he promised or not.
The fact that millions of Egyptians are calling on him to step down means that they are dissatisfied with his performance and they reject him as their president. Following Mursi’s own advice, they took to the streets to express their dissatisfaction with him. No matter what percentage of the entire population or the electorate they represent, they are Egyptians, they are dissatisfied with him and they are demonstrating as he has directed them to.
According to Mursi’s own logic, he cannot stay! According to his own prediction, he shall go!
This article was first published on Lebanon-based Annahar on July 2, 2013.
Multi-award-winning journalist Octavia Nasr served as CNN’s senior editor of Middle Eastern affairs, and is regarded as one of the pioneers of the use of social media in traditional media. She moved to CNN in 1990, but was dismissed in 2010 after tweeting her sorrow at the death of Hezbollah’s Mohammed Fadlallah. Nasr now runs her own firm, Bridges Media Consulting, whose main aim is to help companies better leverage the use of social networks.
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