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برضه الكبير كبير

Baheyya writes Three Elections, One Principle

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Let’s remember that Nasser and Sadat were not battling Islamists in these institutions, but an assortment of leftists, liberals, nationalists, Islamists, and independents. That today the Islamists are at the forefront of the battle for associational autonomy should not obscure the fact that what is at stake is institutional autonomy and undistorted representation. If today the Ikhwan were replaced by leftists as the major electoral and political force, would the regime back off and let them carry on? Absolutely not. Just look at the regime’s multi-tiered involvement in the journalists’ and judges’ associations, two institutions where the Ikhwan historically have had and continue to wield very little clout. So while it’s comforting to dismiss the recent elections as yet more staging grounds for Ikhwan-regime competition, it would be entirely missing the point.

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Comments

Formidable analysis.

You are right, Bheyya is a naturally gifted political analyst, and the most entertaining commentator on Egyptian political affairs in the blogosphere.

Akis Patsourakis

Sadat didn't battle Islamists, in fact, he proped them up, and made an unholy alliance with them to kick the leftists'ass, you just had to see Cairo University confrontations between Naserite students and Islamist students! it was fun, of course the Islamists students were calling the Naserist students Infidels Kufar, and fighting them with knives, it was a bizare scene to watch every Nasser aniversary during that period. When he wanted to turn against them, they developed lethal force, and finished him off. I voted for the Islamists at the Engineering Syndicate in 1990 hopping for a change for the better, however, I was disappointed for reasons beyond this reply. Today, the government is battling islamists not only because it is a dictatorship, and it likes to have monopoly (which is true by the way), but also because there is a real fear for the very existance of the civil state in Egypt (you can check my post on this fear http://nahdetmasr.blogspot.com/). BTW, I would prefer to live with the limited freedom we have currently under a secular tyrant, than to live in theocracy where writing a technical paper/article can get you divorced from your wife (Nasr Abou Zeid) or even worse (Farag Fouda). Final note; you have to check the Al-Wasat party website. These are the ones who claim to be the moderate centrists! I will let you do the discovery yourself! When they say that they are Allah's exclusive representatives, that means that anyone who opposes them would automatically be branded "Apostate" (or Infidel in the case of non-moslems), and every meniac will be delighted to cut their throat!