Three questions for liberals and progressives who support the Egyptian coup

Have you noticed the pro-coup liberals and progressives secretly and not-so-secretly cheering on the coup in Egypt?

In a post from July 3rd, Philip Weiss seems jubilant over another US-sponsored military coup in the Middle East/North Africa:

Even as Egypt braces for what’s next, the images from Tahrir are hugely inspiring. They remind us of the unending technological ingenuity of the Egyptian revolutionaries, and of the importance of self-determination: the protagonists are all Egyptian, the international forces seem largely at bay. And there seems some real hope of a thriving democracy emerging from this turbulent process.

While I share his enthusiasm over the revolutionary potential of the Egyptian people and these recent protests, the understating of the American and Saudi influence in the events of July 3rd is an achilles heel to this argument.  

Another line of argument defending the coup comes from the diarist ”grapes“ at the liberal stalwart DailyKos, where he includes Muhammed Morsi in a group he calls “democratically elected despots”.  According to “grapes,” Morsi shares this distinction with Adolph Hitler, Robert Mugabe and Ferdinand Marcos.

There is a strong current of opinion in the US and around the world that, because Morsi was freely elected, any attempt to remove him, other than through the ballot box, is a fundamental violation of democratic principles.

If Morsi were governing in the US or Europe or any of a number of long-standing democratic countries around the world, I would concur. However, IMHO, Morsi’s Egypt fits into a special category – countries that are struggling to institute democracy for the first time in many years (if ever). Countries in this condition are especially vulnerable to a tragic syndrome.

Their first election may be their last.

I have a comment and a few questions for the “it’s not a coup, it’s a revolution” camp…

First, a comment:

This is a military coup. Even if you think it is a “good” coup, it’s still a coup.  I heard Egyptian demonstrators justify the coup in really interesting ways by saying things like “we didn’t want the military to have to take over, but there was no other way to get rid of Morsi”.

It sounded so familiar but I couldn’t figure out what they reminded me of, then I finally realized. This first category, the “there is no other way” group, reminds me a lot of the Libyans who begged for NATO and the Syrians who continue to beg the West to militarily intervene in their country. They make pretty much the same arguments. I have heard many times Syrians from the SNC make this type of argument, “No Syrian wants outside powers to intervene in their country, but Assad is a mass killer and we have no other way of stopping this Nazi madman”.

Question 1.  For those progressives celebrating this as a victory, keep in mind the Egyptian army have been American clients since the 1979 peace treaty with Israel. The head of the military General Sisi was trained in British and American military academies. Would any American progressive celebrate a Latin American coup by a graduate of the School of the Americas? So, why is this any different?

The Egyptian military has very close cooperation with both Israeli and American military and intelligence agencies. So, a military coup done by the Egyptian military is by definition done with at the very least the tacit approval if not an outright green light from the US. As bad as Morsi was, look at how the siege on Gaza has been tightened since the junta took over. The Rafah crossing is completely shut. So, anyone with pro-Palestinian sympathies should have a lot of trouble finding something to celebrate here.

Question 2.  What progressive can defend any military firing live ammunition on demonstrators? What progressive can defend shutting down opposition television stations and placing a democratically elected leader under house arrest? These are the kinds of actions the CIA-backed forces did in the Congo to Patrice Lumumba, Prime Minister Mossadegh in Iran, Arbenz in Guatemala, Kwame Nkrumah in Ghana, Allende in Chile, and on and on.  Progressives rightfully detest these actions.   So, how can progressives watch the US-backed Egyptian military do almost the same exact things to Morsi and the Brotherhood, and cheer it on as a “revolution”?

Question 3.  A point As’ad Abu Khalil has made is the following: what happens if there is a revolutionary socialist government in Egypt? The precedent for military intervention into civilian politics has already been set, so can anyone really argue that the military would hesitant one second to overthrow a truly revolutionary government?

Not a Defense of the Ikhwan!

This is not a defense of Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood. I detest this group and what they stand for.  Morsi was an awful president, even many of his supporters will now concede this. However, overthrowing Morsi and persecuting the Brotherhood plays right into their hands and will only strengthen them, not weaken them. The best thing you could do to weaken them was give them a chance to rule and let them continue to fail miserably as they had been failing for the past year. As As’ad “Angry Arab” Abu Khalil has said, this coup will only lengthen their shelf-life as an organization.

Posted in Israel/Palestine

{ 51 comments... read them below or add one }

  1. American says:

    Well I am not a progressive, frankly I think most of them are slight idiots and the Dkos crowd in particular.
    But imo this was a coup by the military ….things got put in place a little too ‘quick for the ‘generals’ doing the placing not to have previoulsy had in mind who would be appointed to what afterward.
    Might work out, might not…I bet not.
    Cant think of any military coups off hand that have resulted in ‘deomcracy.

    • OlegR says:

      Chile.
      Spain.

      • Donald says:

        “Chile.
        Spain.”

        This should be good. Explain.

        • OlegR says:

          I am sure you can read some history.

        • “Chile.
          Spain.”
          “This should be good. Explain.

          Pretty eloquent, Donald. Pinochet in Chile (1973) and Franco in Spain (1936) have brought wonderful “democracies” with their military coups, haven’t they? With these two declared fascists cited any doubt, still, that OlegR is on the far right of things? Was it not pretty clear from his first posts on?

        • OlegR says:

          They have brought democracies,that is not to say their regimes were in any way democratic but their systems were not built to perpetuate themselves junta style nor were they overthrown in a revolution.The transitioned into a democracy.
          Unlike such beacons of leftist admiration like say Cuba or North Korea.

        • piotr says:

          Pinochet and Franco brought democracies down. I know that English is not your first language OlegR, but you should be careful not to skip those essential little words.

          The more time passes, the more it seems that accusations against Morsi were largely false. New York times described that “ineptitude” in providing law and order were mostly sabotage by police and big business. “Repression” of the opponents were again mostly rumors and the true cases were outdone in few days by the new junta.

          I watched news from Egypt, checking Al-Ahram in English from time to time. Even though it is state own, it remain quite critical under Morsi. Day after the coup all staff hired after Morsi election was fired, and the coverage became so adulatory for the junta that it is either result of totalitarian command or fascistic zeal.

    • richb says:

      Here shows three examples of a so-called democratic coup.

      link to harvardilj.org

      The current situation matches 6 of the the 7 characteristics of a democratic coup in the paper and the 7th will be satisfied when and if there is a transition to a democratically elected government.

      One myth I am seeing perpetrated here and elsewhere is the US supported the coup. The administration unsuccessfully argued to the Morsi government to share power and tried to dissuade the Tamarud to not take to the streets on 30 June.

      link to juancole.com
      link to egypt.usembassy.gov

      Ambassador Patterson said this to Ibn Khaldun Center on 18 Jun.

      Some say that street action will produce better results than elections. To be honest, my government and I are deeply skeptical.

      This attempt got them simultaneously accused of being pro coup and pro MB and supporting terrorists. Just look at the signs in Cairo with photos of Patterson and Obama on it.

      I also object to here and elsewhere the promotion of Qatari state propaganda. Note the twenty three resignations from Al Jazeera.

      link to aawsat.net

      Over the last week I have been in personal contact with Egyptian activists and am convinced this a real, indigenous, popular rebellion. I am also convinced that regardless of whether you are for or against the Tamarud movement our government should stay out of it. ALL Egyptians hate us and even when we do the right thing we only make things worse. Let the Egyptian people plot their own course.

      • You can be convinced of whatever you want, but you cannot change the fact that the military took power and everyone in the square cheered it on. That’s a coup my friend. Like it or not. And if the US didn’t back the coup then why didn’t they cut off aid to Egypt like the US law calls for? hmmm?

        • Hostage says:

          You can be convinced of whatever you want, but you cannot change the fact that the military took power and everyone in the square cheered it on. That’s a coup my friend.

          If everyone cheers it on it’s a revolution, not a coup.

        • Taxi says:

          Thank you, Hostage, for your clear understanding of the English language. (As well as a million other things!)

          I can only think that the reason so many seemingly reasonable people got it so wrong about Egypt this time round, is because post Bush wars, all based on lies, and concurrent with the present utter disappointment-malaise sweeping the nation under Obama, there seems to be now a tangible reaction, a fervent and blind-sighted political cynicism amongst the masses, leading them to make misguided, even paranoid, conclusion to any seismic political event. Today, nobody (with any brains) believes the politicians anymore and nobody believes the media, leading the collective therefore into their own disillusioned and nihilistic analysis. This is what eventually happens when media works against the people: opinionated chaos and unrealism reigns: living history is engulfed by fog.

          Here on MW, only a handful of people have spoken against the packaged grain: Hostage, Ellen, Rich B, a couple of others and myself.

          There is no denying that ‘empire’ is clandestinely active full-throttle and all over the world. But that doesn’t mean that all its projects are successful every time. And it doesn’t mean that their puppet strings don’t slip out of their grip every now and then either.

          To me, the army’s ultimatum to Morsi shook the Obama administration and took it by surprise, before it rushed to belatedly make right and support the Egyptian people’s will: lip-service support, that is. Just like they did with Mubarak’s ouster. To me, the Egyptian army snookered both Morsi (permanently) and Obama (temporarily). And they got away with it. No, business is not as usual during this era of declining American influence in the middle east.

          This is a fact that fading empires have real problems grasping: business is NOT as usual while you’re in decline. It always takes a long time for big losers to admit to a big defeat. Just look at the Brits and their ongoing Empire Complex.

          The mideast today is not the same middle east as yesterday – literally. It’s shifting and twisting and turning by the minute, faster than your average news cycle. It behooves everyone to educate themselves on the interlaced nuances of each country experiencing an Arab Spring. Not all Arab countries have the exact same political history, or exact aspiration. Read the signs in context to each country. Watch yourself, beware: if you find yourself in alignment with ANY msm headline, revise your thinking and revise again. We all know whose side the media is NOT on. We all know why they write what they write.

        • Citizen says:

          @ Taxi
          While I do agree with your assessment of the current American mass befuddlement and cynicism re media pundits and governmental officials, as to how to assess what’s going on domestically, let alone in overseas places like Egypt and Syria, I don’t know how you arrived at equating this current cultural condition with most MW commenters going with “the packaged grain.” It seems to me the fog is everywhere, both here in USA, and abroad, because nobody buys any package completely. I’m talking about regular folks, not politicians or government spokes folks, or ideological pundits. Nevertheless, I do agree with your concluding recipe for us, the perplexed:

          “Read the signs in context to each country. Watch yourself, beware: if you find yourself in alignment with ANY msm headline, revise your thinking and revise again. We all know whose side the media is NOT on. We all know why they write what they write.”

          What percentage of people would you guess will actually make a serious attempt to follow your recipe? In USA, in EU, in ME? In my opinion the regular commenters on MW (excluding the hasbara bots) don’t deserve your dissing.

    • lysias says:

      France 1958 was at least in part a military coup.

      So was Portugal 1974.

  2. seafoid says:

    Mencken would have been in his element with this Egypt story

    He didn’t have much time for deluded liberals.

    1. “For every problem, there is a solution that is neat, plausible and wrong”.

    And this one reminded me of Morsi and the democratic choice of the people

    2 “The office of president represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart’s desire at last and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron.”

  3. Citizen says:

    Is may be a coup by Western governmental standards, but is it a coup under Egyptian constitutional law? Which branch of government is the supreme law of the land in Egypt?
    Seems to me under the latest draft Egyptian constitution, the Egyptian Military is the highest branch of government, the ultimate dictator as it were in case of domestic factional conflict. According to the draft the military retains the ability to try civilians in military courts if they are accused of damaging the armed forces. Article 198 provides that, “Civilians may not be tried before the military justice system except for crimes that harm the armed forces, and this shall be defined by law.” This leaves intact the military’s discretion to try civilians under the Code of Military Justice.

  4. Citizen says:

    Further,
    (snip)
    “According to the official US position, anyone who foments violent acts after the coup that established favorable facts-on-the-ground can be treated as a threat to the stability of Egypt by the same military that undertook the coup. (The US, of course, is not calling it a “coup,” since to do so it would have to cut off the $1.5 billion in military aid it sends to Egypt, which would make no sense when the coup may foment civil war.)

    (snip)

    The same sort of stability-focused public relations occurred in the notorious 2000 US presidential election. I know we’re not supposed to talk about that episode in American democratic history any more, since Al Gore patriotically ate the roadkill raw for the sake of stability and in the name of discouraging anger and maybe violence. It also turned out to be good for his future as a middle-brow environmental hero and money-maker.
    As you may recall, the declared winner of that absurd episode, George W. Bush, assured voters that he was going to rule for all Americans. Better than anyone, he knew he’d lost the popular vote by 500,000 souls and would have lost the Electoral College if there had been a fair vote in the state ruled by his brother. So he too sucked it up and said what he had to say.
    Then, of course, he got behind the wheel and drove the nation into a ditch off the right side of the road. He mounted a completely unnecessary war that wasted trillions of dollars and cost the lives of thousands of US service men and women. Then, he exploited the disastrous program of his Democratic predecessor to provide every American a house and nurtured an unaccountable Wall Street greed machine that hauled the battered car out of the Iraq ditch and, by 2008, sent it careening over a cliff.”

    link to counterpunch.org

  5. bilal a says:

    The Islamist block in the elections for parliament, president , and in ratification of the constitution exceeds probably 60% of the population. And if you’ve travelled in Egypt you will notice that progressives represent a tiny fraction of the entire population , at least if judged by superficial norms of dress and behavior. The secular liberal elite is also segregated economically being involved mainly in the corrupt military industrial complex, the courts, police apparatus, public work force to some extent. media and culture state apparatchiks. . We’re talking about a unified
    front of state power apparatus across all functions but mainly military-police , cartels-finance, and media-culture. This is th secular liberal corpus.

    This is exactly the same as we see in the United States. Take cultural social conservatism. Probably 60% would not support universal abortion rights, late night cable programming, institutionalized usury in housing and academia, free trade agreements, outsourcing, heavy regulation of all forms of interpersonnel commerce.
    Most of these progressive liberal policies were achieved through the courts, backed by the police apparatus.

    Its possible that this parallel to Egypt only exists in the United States, but it appears more likely that ‘progress’ was achieved in the broader ‘west’ through the same legal judicial , that is to say, undemocratic , means.

    This is exactly why we see liberal secularists now claim that democracy is not about ballots, and that majoritarianism is anti democratic.

    It follows that Progressive-ism can only be achieved through non-democratic means, backed by small and large threats of force ( eg losing your job or being arrested for espousing traditional Judeo Christian ethics). Now imagine American evangelicals marching on planned parenthood or the pentagon in the millions as the MB did in Egypt. They would be cut down far more severely than in the recent massacre in nasr city. And this is a global phenomenon. Geez they r cutting old peoples pensions in Europe to pay back corrupt scam loans made by banks to themselves.

    Global Liberal secularism is the ideology of transnational corporatism, fundamentally anti democratic, minoritarian, and viciously violent and vengefull.
    Jusk ask the detained rural majority muslim activists , tortured maimed in hellish pits inside the secret police prisons in Egypt, sent there enthusiastically by the liberal ‘rebel’ block’s military police allies, and now applauded by the liberal elite in this country.

    • Philip Weiss says:

      Helpful. I’ve always found American liberal attitudes toward the Tea Party and evangelicals to be intolerant. And many of those rightwing political views to be intolerant, and populist.

      • seafoid says:

        Intolerant and arrogant and that’s why they are not listened to. Same goes for liberal attitudes to gun owners. Polarisation results.

      • Citizen says:

        So where if anywhere, do you see a tolerant base in America? How big is it? What’s is it’s composition, and what organizations speak for it? Does any political party represent it?

  6. Dan Good says:

    Morsi was not in office long enough to really do anything. He “should have known” better than antagonize his opposition by taking sides in the sectarian war in Syria, among other things. But still, he was the legitimate leader and ways around his actions could have been found short of military take over. The whole episode is a sad one and the sooner there are new elections the better.

    • seafoid says:

      “Morsi was not in office long enough to really do anything.”

      He was out of his depth. Egypt can’t afford another year of know nothing leadership.

    • piotr says:

      The preposition that “Morsi antagonized his opposition by taking sides in the sectarian war in Syria” is actually very strange.

      I think that it is ludicrous to “take sides” there, but USA is taking sides, enthusiastic supporters of the coup — Saudi Arabia and Kuwait take sides, and I did not read any news item about the new government restoring the embassy in Damascus. The coup was also supported by the largest Salafist party, which may be related to Saudi/Kuwaiti support of the new regime.

      The notion of “secular liberal elite” is also quite misleading. Vast majority of Egyptian do not postulate separation of Islam and the state, but there are at least three interpretations of what it means. The modifications to the constitution that were made after the coup affirm the role of Islam as basic for the Egyptian state, to the public dismay of Copts. So this is not “secular” as we know it. And similarly, most are not particularly liberal.

      Brotherhood’s media were shut down, there were at least two massacres of their supporters and a wave of attacks on their offices, quite a few arrests and totally ludicrous accusations against Brotherhood by the new prosecutors. It remains to be seen if there will be a massive wave of repressions. A quite possible scenario is that Brotherhood will be crashed, leftists will be intimidated and the spoils will be shared by the fascists (Bonapartists?) and Salafists.

    • eljay says:

      >> Morsi … he was the legitimate leader and ways around his actions could have been found short of military take over.

      I agree. He was democratically elected and should have had the opportunity to complete his term, at which time he could democratically have been replaced by a better leader. IMO, his refusal to step down come election time would warrant his removal.

  7. Taxi says:

    “The best thing you could do to weaken them was give them a chance to rule and let them continue to fail miserably as they had been failing for the past year”.

    You got no RIGHT telling the Egyptian people to eat zealot Morsi sh*t and grin and bare it for another THREE YEARS, just so that YOUR western “progressive” and “liberal” sensibilities and standards are met. To use your own argument, I suppose you’d also like the Palestinians to grin and bare it for another 6 decades instead of resisting tyranny today and everyday. Truth is, resistance and revolution are a necessary ugly and apparently you’re too squeamish to accept them for all their grit and crudity.

    When a revolution breaks out, it creates its own rules – and wadayouknow, it practices them instantly. Revolution doesn’t go about its business embracing or tip-toeing around bad old rules (rules that you seem to be crying over, Mr. Glazer).

    This is NOT lalaland. This is dog-eat-dog world. Please comprehend it accordingly. And it will remain a dog-eat-dog world till a global equitable justice breaks out.

    I will not indulge in answering any of your pompous, self-aggrandizing questions. What’s the point when your analysis is at best, mediocre. And just so you know, Mr. Glazer, I’m always suspicious of questions that take up a chunky paragraph each.

    Sorry, you’re neither original, nor succinct. Definitely, lacking an understanding of the relationship between the Egyptian people and their army.

    • RoHa says:

      I’m inclined to agree.

      It is depressing to see the first elected president of Egypt get deposed in this manner, but it was depressing to see the way that president operated. Both offend my delicate liberal sensitivities, but not all the Egyptian people realise that their prime obligation is to keep me happy.

      And, given the history of Egypt, it is unrealistic to expect it. Converting the country into an Arabic-speaking Norway may be desirable (I certainly think it is), but that is not going to happen overnight*.

      I expect a fair bit more revolution to come.

      (Psst! Taxi, it’s “grin and bear [put up with] it”. Though baring it may be more fun, depending on who is baring what.)

      *Norway didn’t become modern Norway overnight, either.

    • yrn says:

      So how come you support bloody Asad and not the revolution.
      Don’t give me your conspiracy bull, as at the first place, the Syrian people wanted a change, a revolution, this bloody Asad murderer solved it the Syrian way, killing his own nation and you support him.

    • “The best thing you could do to weaken them was give them a chance to rule and let them continue to fail miserably as they had been failing for the past year”.

      Taxi..Actually those words were Asa’d Abu Khalil’s not Joseph’s.

      • Taxi says:

        Thankgod,
        The statement has no quotation marks – indicating that it’s Prof Joseph’s.

        @yrn,
        Since you care so much about the Syrian people, why don’t you give them back the Golan you stole from them?

        • yrn says:

          Taxi

          I am not a big Humanist as you, I don’t support ASAD the murderer of his own nation and declare I am a humanist.

        • Taxi says:

          yrn

          I am not a big colonialist as you, I don’t support israeli mass murder and declare I am a ‘light onto all nations’.

          Oh and when did you say you’ll be peacefully handing back the Syrian Golan to Syrians? I didn’t quiet hear your answer. Please repeat louder.

          BTW, big difference between supporting Asad’s duty to fight Alquaida invaders in Syria and supporting “the murderer of his own nation” – which is the analysis of a dim hysteric on steroids. But you’ll never understand this. Just keep stalking me and repeating the same false sh*t whydoncha?

    • eljay says:

      When a revolution breaks out, it creates its own rules – and wadayouknow, it practices them instantly. Revolution doesn’t go about its business embracing or tip-toeing around bad old rules … This is NOT lalaland. This is dog-eat-dog world. Please comprehend it accordingly. And it will remain a dog-eat-dog world till a global equitable justice breaks out.

      Unfortunately, that sounds an awful lot like the justification Zio-supremacists use to defend the creation and existence of their oppressive, colonialist, expansionist and supremacist “Jewish State” – a justification that is routinely, and rightly, condemned here on MW.

      • Taxi says:

        Unfortunately for you, eljay, your intention to smear has been duly noted. Also noted is your pathetic attempt at comparing a popular revolution aimed at liberation, to a foreign racist ideology aimed against an indigent, native population.

        Now I can only think you’re either appallingly ignorant or, yet again, you’re being willfully facetious cuz you don’t like what I have to say about your precious euro invaders of the holy land.

        I reckon it’s the latter.

        Who’s the hate monger now?

        • eljay says:

          >> Unfortunately for you, eljay, your intention to smear has been duly noted.

          There was no intention to smear. Your anger has blinded you to what I wrote.

          >> Also noted is your pathetic attempt at comparing a popular revolution aimed at liberation, to a foreign racist ideology aimed against an indigent, native population.

          No comparison being made. Your anger has blinded you to what I wrote.

          >> Now I can only think you’re either appallingly ignorant or, yet again, you’re being willfully facetious cuz you don’t like what I have to say about your precious euro invaders of the holy land.

          I may be appallingly ignorant, but they are not my invaders. Your anger has blinded you to what I wrote.

          >> Who’s the hate monger now?

          Neither of us is. But you sure are angry.

      • Hostage says:

        Unfortunately, that sounds an awful lot like the justification Zio-supremacists use to defend the creation and existence of their oppressive, colonialist, expansionist and supremacist “Jewish State” – a justification that is routinely, and rightly, condemned here on MW.

        The Americas and Europe have witnessed plenty of democracies that evolved from military coups and revolutions. More than a few of them have expanded their frontiers by practicing colonialism. But the Egyptians are only changing their government again, not their borders. It still amazes me that everyone here hasn’t adopted a wait and see attitude. After all, we are not prophets. The obvious fact is that this is an on-going revolution backed by a sizable segment of the population.

        • yrn says:

          Hostage
          “It still amazes me that everyone here hasn’t adopted a wait and see attitude.”
          Give me a break, how would you describe/define the “wait and see attitude” all of you Humanist adopted regarding Syria.
          Where is you “stop the killing” activity.
          You are adopted the “wait and see attitude” covered by every chance you have , not to make a stand, not to take a side, blame all the parties and do NOTHING. while the killings goes on everyday.

        • Woody Tanaka says:

          “The obvious fact is that this is an on-going revolution backed by a sizable segment of the population.”

          That’s one way to look at it. Another way to look at it is to note that the same organ through which USisrael controlled Egyptian policy for decades has just overturned a democratically elected leader. What is the role of USisrael in this act? On whose behalf did the army act, the “sizable segment of the [Egyptian] population”? or USisrael?

          The fact that those questions are out there motivates much of people’s views, I think.

        • eljay says:

          >> … the Egyptians are only changing their government again, not their borders. It still amazes me that everyone here hasn’t adopted a wait and see attitude.

          Where is the Egyptians’ wait-and-see attitude? They revolted against dictatorship in order to have democracy and they got democracy. And now they are revolting against democracy.

        • gamal says:

          sure wait see, how long it takes for Egypts 1000 Abrams battle tanks to do something for the people.

          “The Americas and Europe have witnessed plenty of democracies that evolved from military coups and revolutions. More than a few of them have expanded their frontiers by practicing colonialism. But the Egyptians are only changing their government again” again sure but did any of them evolve under the obsessively thorough colonial domination, enjoyed by Egypt at the moment? some would argue that while a change of personnel has been effected it is debatable whether the regime has changed, from Mubarak to Morsi to Beblawi et al perhaps different government same regime captures it.

          For those who know Egypt some appreciation of the forces operating in this melee leaves us mainly concerned that a state of emergency will be used to turn the factions on each other, Muslim hunting is already underway, the 3 doctors in my immediate family are all posting about the ubiquitousness of security spooks even in my village near Sinai, and the proliferation of people seeking first aid anonymously , and the deep sense of outrage amongst much of the rural poor population, not because of support for the Ikhwan but because of the violent torrent of abuse being leveled at Islam and Muslims and the poor (ignorant peasants, and the Janitorial class)

          sure wait and see what else, but i think jubilation at this expression of Egypts collective will is misplaced, one of the things it demonstrates is that Egyptians are willing contest the fact that there is no space being allowed for them to pursue their political and social objectives, any democracy representative of the masses is going to take on the international system that impoverishes Egypt and turns the state into the most visible political eunuch of the Arab world and Africa.

          Someone posted an article by my friend Tariq Ramadan, grandson of the founder of the MB, we dont know where we are going, but we do know from whence we came and its the precipitate nature of the military’s putsch that worries many, the provocative assaults and arrests, all being cheered by many who have seen the inside of Egypts political prisons, its all about privilege and money rather than religion and secularism, once the masses address the social inequality, which is of an undeniably criminal extent, well then we may see what political duties an Abrams Battle Tank can usefully perform.

          nonetheless, wait and see is the only sensible approach.

        • Hostage says:

          Give me a break

          I make allowances for your lack of intelligence all the time.

          Give me a break, how would you describe/define the “wait and see attitude” all of you Humanist adopted regarding Syria.

          I haven’t taken a wait and see attitude about the crimes committed in Syria, Egypt, or anywhere else. I’ve consistently advocated that those responsible for crimes on either side of armed conflicts should be brought to justice.

          You are adopted the “wait and see attitude” covered by every chance you have , not to make a stand, not to take a side, blame all the parties and do NOTHING. while the killings goes on everyday.

          Your logic is a little fuzzy. I’m simply saying that the people here doing all of this crystal ball gazing are merely guessing about the course of future political events and that all of this speculation is just that, speculation. That issue has nothing to do with asking anyone here to tolerate acts or situations that give rise to international criminal responsibility.

  8. Yes, “it’s a coup.” But did those of you who are using the pronouncement of this statement a litmus test make equal sounds of dissent in Feb 2011 when the military ousted Hosni Mubarak, in what was no less a coup? Of course not. So, that’s a silly basis for making a case about liberal hypocrisy (indeed there are many other better bases). Fellow commentator Bilal offers his travels in Egypt as proof that “Islamists” are a greater than 60% block in Egyptian society, although we have no definition of what “Islamists” are and anyone who has studied/lived in Egypt knows that that moniker is a permeable and shifting one. There is little doubt that the Tamarrod demos of June 30 were the biggest in Egypt’s history, drawing out many who had demurred from street protest in the 2011 revolution or since (the “Couch Party”). In fact while a certain conservatism may be sweepingly ascribed to Egyptian religious identity, I have little time for those who leap from this observation to argue that large majorities in Egypt are happy with the particularities of Islamist policies/politics. Egyptians in my view are much more complex and nuanced — one reason why the MB by June 30 had lost so much of its public support. In any case, though, the recent coup was never against “Islamists” (hence the inclusion of the Salafist Noor Party and the inclusion of amendments in the provisional constitution that were written by Islamist parties in 2012) — this is purely against the Muslim Brotherhood. Glatzer may have a point that there are some who make hay with the language of promoting democracy and “supporting the revolution” who have uncritically cozied up to the plans of the Egyptian military in its actions over the last couple of weeks (and I have no doubt that what we are seeing is an opportunistic military-felool coup on the backs of a legitimate revolutionary backlash against the MB’s horrific year in office) but those that fit this description are not the Phil Weisses or those who may have provisionally argued along with many Egyptian revolutionaries that the ouster of Mursi was legitimate, but rather the straw men of the WSJ editorial page and the David Brooks/Thomas Friedmans — nothing too surprising there. So let’s stop trying to gauge the best way to move ahead on this matter on the argument of whether it’s a coup or not.

  9. Dan Crowther says:

    I would say it’s real easy for “pwogwessives” to support a military coup in Egypt, we’ve had over a decade of intense military worship here in the US, and now with Barry running the show, the military has been lionized even more – its now “understood” that it’s only Barry and the US Military among the Establishment that is opposed to attacking Iran. The military leaders are the “sober, serious” “statesmen” – what we need to fear is the radical christian zionists and the neocons, it’s almost the same story.

    Lots of folks have convinced themselves the US military is anti war, if you can believe that, what won’t you believe?

    I should say, we should look at this in context – pwogwessives cheering on a coup only a couple of months after “liberal” Boston cheered on the Army patrolling its streets – in many respects the military is the last national institution with any public support, and that’s extremely dangerous.

    • ritzl says:

      Scary stuff. In Egypt the time-frame for all these forces, attitudes, perceptions, etc. to play out is highly compressed. We’re witnessing our own future on so many levels.

      Great comment, Dan.

    • Keith says:

      DAN CROWTHER- “I would say it’s real easy for “pwogwessives” to support a military coup in Egypt….”

      Yes, those who benefit will support the coup, then find some justification for their self-serving actions.

  10. SQ Debris says:

    If you’ve bought into the rationalization that Morsi had driven Egypt into a ditch, was wrecking the economy, etc, put forward for apologists of the military coup out to check out this NYT article:
    link to nytimes.com
    The Mubarak power structure appears to have been sabotaging Morsi all along to gin up dissent, thus providing a pretext for this American/Israeli take over (yup, that’s the right name for it) of the Egyptian government.

    • Chu says:

      They manufactured the crisis. The pro Mubarak people, stunted the electric production, causing blackouts, and delayed the sale of gas for cars, etc.
      Sounds like the old regime was consulted by the mossad.

      ‘The apparently miraculous end to the crippling energy shortages, and the re-emergence of the police, seems to show that the legions of personnel left in place after former President Hosni Mubarak was ousted in 2011 played a significant role — intentionally or not — in undermining the overall quality of life under the Islamist administration of Mr. Morsi.’

      • Citizen says:

        @ Chu
        Yep. I see the same thing. Morsi chose not to deal with Egypt as a democratic wannabe, but Murbarak leftovers in government and business also sabotaged Morsi’s weak democratic attempts at governance. The only thing Morsi did successfully was to keep securing Israel to gain US aid, but Murbarak did that too, for over 30 years. Shows one what is deemed highest priority by any Egyptian regime: US tax dollars. It’s really depressing considering the Egyptian protests against their government was the most massive in world recorded history. Makes me think the old peasant revolts of European history have moved to the 2013 Middle East.

    • Taxi says:

      Good to know where you get your scoopy analysis from, Debris – uhuh, the NY Times. Of course you’re gonna find like-minded ignorance there. Just keep defending Saint Morsi whydon’tya, keep telling us how the angelic moslem brotherhood in Egypt are victims of a giant conspiracy that’s immoral and undemocratic. Keep telling us that the REVOLUTION that happened last week in Egypt is a grand illusion created by Mubarak, israel and America with the help of the mutinous Egyptian army. Repeat to us how the Egyptians are “nice” but not particularly smart enough to see what’s being done to them, against them, a second time round.

      • Citizen says:

        Taxi
        Who here defended Old Egypt and who here defends New Egypt? We at MW all know Egypt is economically a basket case, and we all know the transfusion of $ to Egypt by the US depends solely on any Egyptian regime kissing Israel.