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Will the Muslim Brotherhood return to the political scene? - Daily News Egypt

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Will the Muslim Brotherhood return to the political scene?

I do not want to spread panic amongst people especially those who are enemies of the Brotherhood, but I am beginning to think that there is a possibility that the Brotherhood will return to the forefront of the political scene. The main reason for the resurgence of the Brotherhood is the aggressive methods employed by …

Farid Zahran
Farid Zahran

I do not want to spread panic amongst people especially those who are enemies of the Brotherhood, but I am beginning to think that there is a possibility that the Brotherhood will return to the forefront of the political scene.

The main reason for the resurgence of the Brotherhood is the aggressive methods employed by supporters of the police state, specifically those supporting former Minister of Interior Habib Al-Adly. As a result of these brutal tactics the Brotherhood  is gaining momentum every day.

After the 25 January Revolution, Al-Adly supporters disappeared and those who attempted to sneak into the political scene were met with angry crowds – who in turn were met with police brutality. When the Brotherhood took over, at first Al-Adly supporters inside the ministry of interior cooperated with the new leadership.  The cooperation included the dismissal of the officers who specialized in combating terrorism, as well as complying with police brutality at the presidential palace. These supporters also included media personalities as well as officers inside the Ministry of Interior. They did not only abuse people, but also gave a rancid reputation to the rest of the ministry. Even the officers who were not involved in any brutality [I believe they make up the majority of the ministry] and refused to participate in any violence were tainted by this rouge group. Innocent officers were forced to battle with the angry protesters of the 25 January revolution throughout the country.

In addition, Al-Adly’s men were absent from the battle against the Brotherhood in the period between parliamentary elections and the weeks leading up to 30 June protests. For a time these men were restricted to areas in and around the ministry. This confinement reflected the group’s complicity with the Muslim Brotherhood.  When some democratic parties succeeded in dismantling the Brotherhood, Al-Adly supporters came back to the scene feigning support for the 30 June protests. Supporters masked themselves behind various democratic entities and personalities, placing themselves at the forefront of the political scene all the while maintaining their anonymity.

Analysts have explained the fact that Al-Adly supporters are well aware of people’s animosity towards them. They were conversely aware of the prestige of, democratic entities and personalities. Moreover, supporters of the police state were unfamiliar with the methods of free political dialogue, which was a necessary asset in the battle against the Brotherhood. Some analysts further point out that they believe that these parties hid behind democratic institutions as they feared a return of the Brotherhood and the resulting backlash should they succeed at gaining power.

After 30 June, Al-Adly supporters believed that the fight against the Brotherhood was over; however they continued to manipulate the threat in order to exercise influence over the population. Their slogan became “nothing is louder than the sound of battle”.  They systematically propagated a broad and ambiguous  understanding of “Ikhwan” making it synonymous with anyone against the police state, which happened to include many democratic institutions.

Al-Adly supporters were joined by those who wanted a new dictator and supporters of the “administrative reform project.” As a result , they have assumed a role at the forefront of the political scene, becoming more influential every day. Their influence has reached beyond the media and has been successful in implementing oppressive legislation such as ratification of the controversial Protest Law.

It is also important to note the timing of the law- which has sent a message to the democratic entities indicating the end of the alliances of 30 June. Moreover, these parties have exerted considerable effort to encourage democrats to vote against the newly drafted constitution. Should the democrats concede they in effect will have excluded themselves from the democratic process and the political life of the country.

The passing of the Protest Law was not enough, for Al-Adly supporters, further sought to enforce it in the most repulsive way. They did not just arrest peaceful protesters, but also beat them in a way sadly reminiscent of their violent past. Meanwhile, the Brotherhood is free to protest anyplace they choose.

As a result of pressure to release the detained protesters, all protesters were released with the exception of Hossam Hassan, member of the Egyptian Social Democratic Party’s high commission. In addition, a warrant was issued for 10 member of the Social Democratic Party in Assiut simply because they were involved in a peaceful protest.  This further confirmed the ongoing battle between Al-Adly supporters and democratic entities throughout the country.

The real problem is not in the police state in itself as it is weak and obviously flawed. The real problem is that the methods of the Police State have encouraged the return of the Brotherhood. As oppression increases and thousands of Egyptians face injustice, those against the state grow in number. Citizens will first seek relief in democratic institutions, however a State lacking confidence will of course fail to meet their demands. An embittered citizenry, after a period of confusion,  will ally themselves with the Brotherhood who appear the only cohesive opposition to the State. Since the police state does not engage in political dialogue, the Brotherhood will regain the support of the people despite their failed and in coherent rhetoric –  a week political dialogue is always better than no speech at all.

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  • sam enslow

    It is part of the revolutionary process .Egypt has yet to experience a true revolution. Revolutions require changes in thinking and changes in institutions. So far what has happened in Egypt can be called a Mubarak revolution, “You move from this chair to that chair, and you move from that chair to this chair. Now everything has changed!” After three years of revolution, the most common remark I hear in Egypt’s cafes is, “We had a revolution and nothing changed.”
    It is normal in revolutions to allow the old aristocrats a chance to reform. It is normal that they do not pay attention. Simple problems are allowed to fester. The security service will show the people they should get back in their boxes, “We must be strong with the people so they will respect us.” They refuse to understand that the people revolted because they had nothing to lose. That is the most dangerous of enemies. In the end, the old aristocrats end up with their heads on the chopping block. All because they refused to deal honestly with the masses. There comes a time when the troops aim their guns not at protesters but at their generals. How many first went to Tahrir believing they were already dead? – “Killing me will only make it official.”
    Egypt faces many problems. This is true, but if Egypt recognizes these problems and works to solve them, it can be once again considered a major power and cultural center. Egypt doesn’t need fake designer watches, jeans, fake everything. It can have genuine everything, but do so it must clean the rotten core that all the outer finery and xenophobia cannot cover up. The shame to Egypt is not that it has these problems (every country does) but that it refuses to face them and attempt to solve them.
    The Brothers are a spent force. The opposition is not all The Brothers. The people see what is not happening. They still pay sweets. They are still made to run from government office to office to get anything done. They are still hungry. They see illegal buildings grow like weeds. They see. They experience. They are saying, :”Do not pee on my leg and tell me it is raining.” The aristocrats (as they see themselves), need only be honest, keep their hands out of people’s pockets, and provide real security (stop crimes) to prosper. They need to start talking with the people, and by their actions regain a degree of trust. Strutting and chest pounding will not work. Results will. The aristocracy always think, “Now is not the time.” Sorry, but the time is now. Time is important. Try to keep everything, and everything will be lost.

  • tvcaldwell

    The pretensions of the writer to conjure up an image of importance is so obvious. He would like us to believe that they can wish away arguably Egypt’s biggest political force – one that was able to sustain and grow even in the face of brutal repression and atrocities committed on them by military tyrants Nasser, Sadat and Mubarak. During this period of about eight decades the group – Muslim Brotherhood, were banned and had to work from underground for more than half the years of its existence. What is the evidence that Sissy who is not even half as smart as Mubarak can succeed in eliminating them when all his predecessors could not, particularly in an age when military rule is not fashionable in the way it was during Nasser, Sadat and the early years of Mubarak rule?

    It is understandable that Zahran would like his whatever party to cash in on the absence of the Brotherhood, but he has got his calculations wrong. If the military tyrants are willing to challenge the mighty Brotherhood, why would they allow a tiny inconsequential group to flourish and grow particularly when the group had to depend on the military coup to make any headway in the country’s politics?

    The most important lesson Zahran could learn from the Brotherhood is to work among the people and focus less on the intrigues and conspiracies that go on in the cantonments and places which have no relevance to the common man. That also explains why the Brotherhood is so popular and why their popularity has increased substantially after the military coup.

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