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  1. Interesting bit of background from Beruit's Daily Star Saudi approval will continue to shape Egypt’s foreign policy By Barak Barfi
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  2. On Salon New mass protests planned in Egypt by Natasha Lennard
    The MB has solid middle class support and a well established party apparatus, their left of center opponents who where at the forefront of the protests are a diverse and entirely unprepared for an electoral fight.

    The Egyptian left lost the recent constitutional referendum that prepared the ground for elections in the summer by a 70 point landslide. This is a very conservative country, with the arrival of Junta backed free and fair elections reactionary Islamists may well be the key power block that shape its future. That probably means one with Sharia law as the basis for all law and a passive aggressive attitude to Israel.

    Revolutions often fade with the party of the landlords slipping into the divers seat. The Brotherhood and the generals are the rentiers in Egypt.
  3. I'd rather see the Brotherhood than the generals, I think, for Egypt's sake. The generals have had since 1956 to sort their shit out, and it hasn't worked. The beards might be worth a shot, with the knowledge that the generals are in the background, Turkey-style, if it all gets too hairy.
  4. Any representation is better than a Junta and the Brothers, like HA in Lebanon, know complete control is beyond their grasp. While the Islamists actually agenda is unclear their entusiasm for free elections seems entirely genuine and there is no sign of a Khomeini style event brewing.

    The Generals seem to have done a deal with the MB to keep the restive plebs in line. They are doing exactly what Pindi has done with Pakistans much less popular reactionary Islamist parties. In this situation Tantawi is wise to keep his guiding hand somewhat concealed, the armies prestige will be untainted. As with Turkey deep reform won't happen until the army is edged out of power by competent civilians, that may take a long time.

    It may be better for Egypt's young progressives if the Brothers vigorously participate in power now rather than later. Whatever government Egypt gets will fail to reach the revolutions expectations. Egypt's structural problems are severe, they'll take decades to fix and further unrest seems likely.
  5. U.S. fares poorly in first modern polling of Egyptian views By Hannah Allam | McClatchy Newspapers
    My bold, this isn't surprising, only journos hang off Twitter feeds and Facebook, often restricted to English speaking traffic. The resulting picture is bound to be skewed. The MB is only standing for 50% of seats so it is a given that the government will be a coalition. The existing constitution only supports a heavily presidential/autocratic, its only been lightly amended.
  6. On NightWatch
    There's been some fragmentation in the MB, the youth wing has been particularly disgruntled. The above development is interesting, the army are trying to prep the electoral battlefield in favor of the corrupt status quo. No one is having it, this could be the start of a genuinely revolutionary moment. The army appears to need the conservative MB to legitimize it's back room dominance. The Brothers have popular clout and higher ambitions than being stooges for Generals and their bid to maintain Nasser's Rentier State.

    See New electoral law unwelcome across Egypt's political spectrum for details.
  7. On The Moor Next Door Vague Thoughts on Arab Uprisings
    Key thing here is the lack of real revolutionary political organization within the progressive Twitterati. We have a shambles in these risings. It occurs to me the noise of the much trumpeted new media technology may even be acting as a impediment to deeper revolutionary organization that's largely bult face to face and from a core leadership down. The folk who have this well developed sort of muscle and coherent understandable programs are the Islamists.
  8. In the WSJ Egypt's Rulers Stoke Xenophobia By Yaroslav Trofimov

    Looking at the polling data there is little need to stoke anti-US/Israeli feeling, the windy wonder Barry is even less popular than his predecessor.
    My bold, nice touch the Baha'ism bit, I can just imagine some frothing beard reaching for his revolver at the very thought.

    Oddly like some of the fear mongering stuff you hear from the insurgent right in the US, I mean a secular Egypt is about as likely as Sharia takeover in Michigan.
  10. In The Guardian Israel faces worst crisis with Egypt for 30 years as diplomats flee
    Ah, the Arab Autumn.
  11. Nehustan

    Nehustan On ROPs

    So...it might turn out that that peace wall might have some function after all. It'll keep all those foreign duelers, halvers and fulls safe with the Palestinians should tanks roll; Eastern Germany Palestine is not. At least it's not those dreaded (New) Labour (Neu Arbeit) people in power, and there should be enough indoctrination from Shiloh in the camps to make sure those secular IDF (La Illaha, La Illaha, La Illaha) can play Legion should it get hairy. Who knows Banu Israel might actually get free travel to between the two blue lines (i.e. Tigris and Euphrates, Ur, Chaldees!), might take a while and a new constitution in Palestina (Pax Romana, Pax Brittania, Pax Americana? PAX ROMANA...Surat Ar-Rum!) more Yemen/Sheba than Yathrib (il Allah!!). Good job it's Likkud in power (i.e. with some of those SS rejecters/Stern descendants) and not the dreaded labour and their old fashioned (blood) red flag internationalé bollocks...Jerusalem blue flags please!
  12. From Middle East Online Egypt military to widen state of emergency
    The Arab Spring's great faux revolution rolls on.

    If you paid attention to the initial demonstrations it was clear economics and specifically the organized labor's discontent with Egypt's rentier state were as salient as demands for a more representative government seized on by the giddy MSM.

    What we have now is Junta of old guard generals behind a facade of the "transitional" SCAF conducting nest feathering business much as usual with an eye on the mob. Their policy positions are now at least swayed by the Cairo Street which Mubarak ignored. However they respond to strikes with laws more draconian than Mubarak enacted using the attack on the Israeli embassy as a pretext. That they stood back and watched that attack until DC pleaded with them to intervene is telling.
  13. On Bloomberg Egyptians Cheer Erdogan in Cairo as Turkey Seeks Partnership With Egypt By Emre Peker
    The Islamist tinged AKP government's rise to popular supported dominance over the formidable Turkish Deep State is a successful model many Egyptians will now look too.

    Erdogan is clearly working to position Turkey as the leading power in the region and perhaps the Umma. Polling shows Iran is viewed with great suspicion while Turkey enjoys a great deal of prestige amongst many Arab populations and it is rising.

    He has little to lose and much to gain by tilting diplomatically against Israel to capitalize on both the Arab and his own Turkish population's gut feelings. DC adores the Jewish State but its more realist interest lie the far more geo-strategic Turks.

    This may be no bad thing in the bigger picture even for the Israelis, the Turks are advancing at the expense of the Iranians. They are a pragmatic power Israel can hope to negotiate with. Perhaps not with this diplomatically inept Likud government but a later one.
  14. Nehustan

    Nehustan On ROPs

    To be honest if I was an Israeli (which I'm frikkin not despite some people who are supposédly within Islam loving to call me Yahoud! Whatever!) I'd vote Likkud, I think they do the best with a dud hand; they can only really go forward, it wasn't them who broke 'the promise' of 02/11/1917...nor caused the Nakba of '48. If I'd arrived on boats, or been in country when the partitioning was leaked I'd have been pissed off, SS or Kampster...it has basically lead to the last 60 odd years of troubles. If Jakob Shiloh Wettin were in Israel today he'd vote Likkud, liase between the settlers (Muhajiroon) and helpers (Ansari) on the east of the peace wall, and be prepped to roll tanks to defend both sides of the wall. It wouldn't take anyone to say 'I do Nehushtan' he'd reply 'I can do myself thanks!'. It'll be a while until Palestina is free, and I personally have to thank Likkud types for my silver 'new moon' Palestina pendent; Pax Romana!

    (edited to add...new mooners I met early summer...Ahlan wa Sahlan to the European Caliphate...it's not quite Vagator...but enjoy Shiloh's swiss account...propagate...new moon sighted over Bacca)
  15. In Haaretz U.S. told Egypt it must rescue Israeli embassy workers or suffer 'consequences,' sources say By Barak Ravid
    The attack's been compared, hysterically, to the taking of the US Embassy in Teheran, I'm reminded of a less known event.

    Just after the USSR invaded Afghanistan, the US embassy in Islamabad was stormed. A furious mob was beating on the armored door of the panic room for a couple of hours with the staff locked inside. I'm sure the Pentagon line to Pindi was buzzing with impotent frustration then as well. The door held. Can't recall if the Pak Army intervened finally. It was rumored the ISI had bussed in the mob in the first place.