Tag Archives: Egipto/Egypt

El voto islamista se divide en las presidenciales egipcias y los salafistas quedan fuera

 

 

Hoy se cerraba el último día de la campaña electoral que decidirá los próximos 23 y 24 de mayo los dos candidatos presidenciales que pasen a la segunda vuelta. En estas 48 horas previas al voto, el 50% del electorado indeciso deberá tomar una decisión en las primeras elecciones presidenciales libres de Egipto post-revolucionario.

 

La batalla política está dividida entre los islamistas y las figuras del antiguo régimen o “fulul” como les llaman los egipcios. Los islamistas cuentan con dos candidatos preferidos: Mohamed Mursi de los Hermanos Musulmanes y Abou El Fotouh quien representa una escisión de los miembros más liberales del anterior movimiento.

 

Centenares de seguidores se dirigen al último evento público de Abou El Fotouh. Jóvenes con pancartas cantan el eslogan oficial. Hind tiene 19 años y estudia ingeniería: “Votaré a Fotouh porque es el candidato de los jóvenes que creará trabajo, el mas moderado y abierto tanto hacia los egipcios como hacia la política internacional”. De hecho Abou El Fotouh ha logrado atraer entre sus filas a la juventud de los Hermanos Musulmanes que ven en él un dirigente mas abierto al debate y la modernidad que ellos quieren compaginar con la religión. Una mujer vestida con un niqab (velo que cubre a totalidad el rostro) sostiene una pancarta con el dibujo de un caballo, símbolo del partido de El Fotouh. Cada candidato ha elegido un símbolo para dirigirse a los egipcios iletrados (cerca del 40% de la población) que no pueden leer los eslóganes o pancartas. Mouna votará Fotouh porque representa “su versión del Islam”. “ Los Hermanos Musulmanes han demostrado que quieren el poder para preservarse como movimiento. Fotouh defiende los intereses del Islam y de los egipcios, no los de su partido”.

 

El partido salafista Al Nur que gano 25% de los escaños parlamentarios no tiene candidato. ¨Aunque no hay una directiva clara, muchos votaremos Fotouh” comenta Ahmed miembro de Al Nur. “Al fin y al cabo, Fotouh es uno de los padres del movimiento salafista egipcio” concluye a modo de justificación.

 

El voto islamista ha cambiado de rumbo en varias ocasiones.” A la llegada al parlamento de los Hermanos Musulmanes muchos se asustaron del ansia de poder de estos y se dirigieron a Abou El Fotouh como un candidato mas moderado. Pero en el mes previo a las elecciones y tras su acercamiento a los salafistas, otro tanto de votantes se han arrepentido y se dirigen hacia Amr Mussa” Explica Mostaza Hefni, doctorando en Ciencias Políticas.

 

 

El mitin se convierte en un desfile  interminable de figuras carismáticas del arte, la religión y la política en Egipto. Una conocida actriz se dirigirá al público aristocrático, mientras que Wael Ghonim el joven que a través de una pagina de facebook contribuyó a la movilización de los revolucionarios, ganará el voto de los jóvenes. Les sigue un jugador de fútbol, un cantante, el hijo del conocido sheik Qardawi, lideres del partido salafista Al Nur, un periodista cristiano,  y otras tantas personalidades que en la campaña ayudan a Fotouh a ganarse un pedazo de cada estrato social ensanchando su base entre los votantes. En el discurso los eslóganes mas virulentos se dirigen hacia los Hermanos Musulmanes y contra los militares, “ Abajo los SCAF” se corea entre unas 10,000 personas que asistieron al mitin.

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Mubarak’s image after Gaza

With elections approaching Mubarak will have to cope with the burden of  the Israel’s war on Gaza impact in regional perceptions of politics.

Here a couple of images in a wall in Hamra, close to the American University of Beirut.

Here if you want to check the group who did the “Graffity”: Falatinehorra – Free Palestine

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New Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood Spiritual leader

Here a couple of ideas from Husam about the change. Still stays the question: How much of an implication will this have in the movement between different branches, and in its relations to others:  parties and/or government?

n.


“Egypt’s New Brotherhood Leadership: Implications and Limits of Change” by HUSAM TAMMAM in Arab Reform Bulletin

FEBRUARY 17, 2010

Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood has been buffeted by a seemingly endless series of changes and blows over the past few years.  No sooner had the organization begun to recover from a controversial leadership election that ended January 20 than the regime detained some of the new senior leaders—including Deputy Supreme Guide Mahmoud Ezzat and Guidance Bureau members Essam Erian, Mohie Hamid, and Abdul Rahman al-Barr—in uncharacteristic midnight arrests on February 8.  The regime directed a new and surprising accusation at the three:  attempting to form an organization based on the teachings of Brotherhood radical Sayyid Qutb (executed in 1966), including armed units intended to carry out militant operations inside Egypt.  This was an apparent attempt to capitalize on the new leadership’s association with Qutb, whose ideas are generally deemed extremist, and to remind Egyptians of the Brotherhood’s past use of violence.

The combined effect of the elections and the arrests, coming on the heels of continuous regime attacks on the Brotherhood’s leadership and finances during the past four years, is to push the organization in an increasingly conservative and defensive direction.  The Brotherhood’s internal divisions and problems are now exposed for all to see and real changes in the way the group functions may be underway.  Relations between the Brotherhood and the regime, already poor over the last several years, might also be taking a turn for the worse.

Turning Inward

The January elections empowered conservative members who are deeply influenced by the Salafi-style political thought of Qutb. New Supreme Guide Dr. Muhammad Badi`, who was imprisoned with Qutb, is a prime example. This conservative faction is more interested in working from within to cultivate a strong, disciplined movement than in engaging with other political forces and intellectual currents in Egyptian society. They place a higher premium on the spiritual education and social upbringing of the movement’s base than on developing a comprehensive reform program that would appeal to a broader audience.

The Brotherhood begins its new chapter having lost almost an entire faction that was committed to a dialogue with other social and political forces and capable of building alliances with them. Although reformists never had a strong organizational presence and were unable to penetrate all of the movement’s organizational levels, they had a few senior representatives in the Guidance Bureau—for example Abdul Monem Aboul Fotouh and Muhammad Habib—who lost their seats in the latest elections. New Guidance Bureau member Essam Erian has been known as a leading reformist, but his recent election reportedly was due to a deal with the conservatives in which he disassociated himself from his reformist colleagues. During the recent elections, disagreements between conservatives and reformists escalated to the point where some candidates filed official complaints challenging the integrity of the electoral process; some have refused to endorse the new guide.

Indeed, the elections precipitated an internal debate that threatens to produce a significant internal rift akin to the one that took place in 1996, when a group of young Brotherhood leaders left the movement to form the (still unlicensed) Wasat Party. The elections are also likely to set off a campaign to purge the Brotherhood of reformists. The movement will need time to overcome deep rifts and restore internal harmony, an unusual development for a group that had long succeeded in keeping such differences a private matter.

Changing Role for the Guide

Another notable internal change in the Brotherhood is the end of the era of charismatic supreme guides; the post has changed from that of a revered spiritual and symbolic figure to one that is strictly administrative.  Retired Guide Mahdi Akif’s tenure raised some concerns. Akif—a simple person with a tendency to overreact—made several political mistakes and media blunders. Akif’s age (82) and status as a member of the founding generation have nonetheless guaranteed his standing as an icon for younger generations, especially outside of Egypt. There were no more contestants from the founding generation of the Brotherhood to replace him, which contributed to the intense competition over the post of supreme guide and controversy over the results.

Keep reading…

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The swaying of a Giant

 Egypt, or more concretely Mubarak’s regime is on the verge of exhaustion. After Gaza its credibility and legitimacy are at the minimum, at least among Arabs. Other players (see two posts below) are competing in better terms than Cairo for interfering in regional issues. The next Egyptian presidential elections will be critical for the survival of the regime. But even if Mubarak’s legacy does not survives, what is at stake is way more important: is its historical role as regional negotiator, its main savoir faire.  I will be posting a deeper analysis at Fundacion Alternativas(http://www.falternativas.org/ ) soon about this subject.

N.S

 

Egypt: Why key US ally in Mideast peace is weakerBy Sarah A. Topol, Christian Science MonitorCAIRO – With renewed promises of revitalizing Middle East peace negotiations, US envoy George Mitchell is due in Beirut today – the first stop of his inaugural 2010 regional tour. But a key ally in his efforts, Egypt, has gotten off to a bad start in the New Year, further complicating American interests.

While Egypt’s pressure on Hamas has backed the Islamist movement into a corner, it has also inflamed Palestinian anger by doing so – and thus weakened Egypt’s power as a regional negotiator.

The US has long hoped that Egypt would prove a key intermediary in bringing about Israeli-Palestinian peace. But Egypt has a poor relationship with Hamas, the Palestinian organization that controls the Gaza strip, and its recent effort to beef up its border fence with Gaza has backed Hamas into a corner and inflamed wider Palestinian anger against Egypt.

As a consequence, many Palestinians see Egypt as an ally of the US and Israel. The country’s ability to act as an honest broker has been weakened as a consequence.

The problem is that Hamas is an offshoot of the Muslim Brotherhood, Egypt’s most popular and powerful opposition movement. The regime of President Hosni Mubarak has been almost as eager as Israel for the Islamist movement to fail in Gaza, for fear it could encourage more Egyptians to support the brothers. But Egypt remains eager to hang on to its role as a perceived potential peace-maker since that inflates its importance to the US, which provides it with $2 billion in aid each year.

“The only paper or card which the Egyptian foreign policy can talk to Americans and say that we are very important in any process in the region is the ‘Palestinian card’…. It’s the only card with which we can play,” says Emad Gad at the Al-Ahram Centre for Strategic and International Studies, a think tank funded by the Egyptian government .

Read more…

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Reconciling with Syria vs a new regional order?

It could be say that reintegrating Syria in the international sphere is bound to impact the regional sphere. It is sure is not the favorite dish for many in the region as Saudis or Egypt and even some factions in Lebanon. But an increase of the Syrian say in regional politics and this through Turkey and the US may decrease the leverage of countries as Egypt, thus reshaping the regional status quo.

In this direction points Haaretz’s text.

 

N.S

Egypt riled by Syria’s increasing role in the region By Zvi Bar’el

What happened to the reconciliation between Syria and Egypt supposedly in the works? There had been widespread speculation in the Arab media in anticipation of the Syrian-Saudi summit meeting last Wednesday, that the Egyptian president would go to Riyadh for the Syrian-Saudi summit meeting last Wednesday, to ease the four years of bad blood (starting from the Second Lebanon War) between the two. The rift in relations between Syria and Saudi Arabia had lasted longer than that: five years. It began after the assassination of the Lebanese prime minister Rafik Hariri in February 2005, and ended only last October when Saudi King Abdullah mended ties with Syrian President Bashar Assad and agreed to visit Damascus. Since then, Abdullah has been trying to persuade Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak to bury the hatchet with Assad, but has been unsuccessful thus far. As the summit approached, it seemed as if the warring sides would shake hands in the Saudi capital, but then Mubarak learned that on the eve of his departure, Assad had held a telephone conversation with Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in Tehran and explained to him that “Egypt would have no choice but to recognize that opposition (such as that espoused by Hamas and Hezbollah) is the only way to get things done.” That was enough for Mubarak to cancel his trip to Riyadh. Egypt can continue being annoyed with Syria but it cannot ignore the new role Damascus has recently taken on for itself in the region. One example of this is Assad’s proposal to the Saudis to mediate between them and Iran with the aim of reaching “regional reconciliation” and not merely “Arab reconciliation,” which is King Abdullah’s goal.

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Algeria-Egypt: Would a soccer match end up in diplomatic crisis ?

I was reluctant to the idea of devoting a single word to a soccer match but unfortunately the consequences have reached unexpected limits.  Here I post some of the comments in Algerian and Egyptian press (and other). Both media are very well-known for transforming little incidents in nation state problems where sooner or later the presidents have to intervene in the matter.

 

In countries where the critic of their own politics, in this case the regimes ruled by Mubarak and Buteflika, are bounded by the limits of political criticism under the banner of “ national security”, soccer and issues related to US and EU foreign policy have always a major role and space in public media where the discussion is so opened that can reach unexpected limits as is the case with soccer match between Algeria and Egypt  in Soudan.

 

Many Algerians and Egyptian lawmakers and activists are wondering why Egyptians and Algerian didn’t show as much temper and nationalism against torture in their countries or for human rights or at the last presidential elections of their countries.

Enjoy the reading and don’t miss the front cover of the Algerian newspaper al-khabar.

 

For pictures enjoy the ones taken by a good friend in Cairo: Tim Khaldas: http://www.kaldasianarts.com/blog/2009/11/15/cairo-egypt-photographer-cairo-celebrates-2-0-victory-over-algeria-in-world-cup-qualifier-match/

 

N.S

 

Egypt versus Algeria: all for you, Jamal Mubarak

http://angryarab.blogspot.com/2009/11/egypt-versus-algeria-all-for-you-jamal.html

 

 “The Mother of All Matches”

http://www.daralhayat.com/portalarticlendah/77149

C’est la plus grand nombre de personnes transportées dans l’histoire de l’aviation civile dans le monde après le blocus de Berlin”

http://www.elmoudjahid.com/accueil/sport/46674.html

Not to be

Defeated by Algeria, Egypt could not make it to the World Cup. Alaa Abdel-Ghani reports on the match and the trouble thereafter

http://weekly.ahram.org.eg/2009/973/fr3.htm

مظاهرات «الغضب» تتواصل: المحامون يحرقون علم الجزائر.. وتعليمات بـ«التهدئة» فى مجلس الشعب

http://www.almasry-alyoum.com/

no tiene desperdicio la portada de al-Khabar

http://www.elkhabar.com/

Medelci convoque l’ambassadeur égyptien

http://www.elwatan.com/Medelci-convoque-l-ambassadeur


أدخلنا المصريين في حداد وبكاء شعبهم سيستمر لسنوات
مجموعتنا صعبة في كأس إفريقيا وستكون محطة تحضيرية للمونديال

http://www.elkhabar.com/quotidien/index.php?idc=33&ida=184382&key=1&cahed=1

Algerians attack Egyptian football fans in Sudan

http://english.aljazeera.com/news/articles/39/Algerians-attack-Egyptian-football-fans-in-Sudan-.html

 

الجامعة تتوسط بين مصر والجزائر

http://www.aljazeera.net/NR/exeres/3B8E7B87-8999-4C78-AF49-C1EF1D3CB0FB.htm

for a chronicle stories about the most famous match

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A Presidential Battle without Candidate, in al-Hayat by Mohammad Salah

Just by reading the tittle we could expect an article about Morocco, or Algeria or Tunisia, Syria but unfortunately the list get longer now with the issues of Mubarak succession in Egypt.

N.S

Sun, 25 October 2009
Mohammad Salah

The media and Egyptian political groups insist on busying the public with the names of people it believes are suitable candidates for presidential elections two years from now. Egyptians wake up every day to news of the intention of this or that person to run and compete against the ruling National Democratic Party. This is regardless of whether President Husni Mubarak decides to nominate himself for a sixth term, or whether the expectations are correct, and his son Jamal Mubarak is nominated for the post. The important thing is that the issue has transcended the objections to the extension for Mubarak, something that the Kifaya movement has warned about for years, or the opposition to seeing power pass from father to son, which the No Hereditary Succession movement has now adopted. This group includes leading figures from Kifaya as well. The Egyptian political scene has reached the point of playing up the issue of presidential elections and taking it out of its true context. We should note that none of those whose names have been mentioned in recent days has announced his intention or determination to think about the matter; they always respond to questions posed by the media in press interviews, television programs or quotes on the run with generalities; these include praise of President Mubarak and an affirmation that his son Jamal “and others” have the right to run for office. When it is time for a question requiring a specific answer, such as whether the person intends to run, the answer has more than one meaning. Usually, they are diplomatic answers, and lack a clear denial or confirmation, since the Constitution “guarantees the right of each citizen to be a candidate.”

In general, most of the names that have appeared in the media recently – Dr. Ahmad Zoueil, the head of the International Atomic Energy Agency, Dr. Mohammed El-Baradei, and the secretary general of the Arab League, Amr Moussa – are not allowed by the Constitution to run. It stipulates that the candidate must have been a high-ranking member of a party for at least a full year prior to the poll, and none of the three mentioned above is a party member in the first place. The independents who do not belong to parties are required to receive a big “quota” of votes from members of the People’s Assembly, Shura Council and local councils, where the NDP enjoys a majority. Moreover, two of the three individuals will be around 70 by the time the poll takes place. In fact, the majority of existing parties do not take part in the rush of candidacies, despite their stance on the candidacy of Jamal Mubarak. Perhaps this is because they would be greatly embarrassed; it would appear that a party that courts a well-known figure and convinces him to join, then elevates him to a high post, so that he can be a candidate, lacks people who are good enough to run in the first place. In fact, each segment of the population has come to believe that a public figure occupies a prominent post is an example of the president for the future, irrespective of other qualifications that a president should have, such as residing in the country for a sufficient period of time, so that he can be directly connected to the affairs and issues of citizens.

Despite the amendments to Article 79 of the Constitution, which specify the selection of a president in a free election from among a group of candidates, instead of the previous referendum system, there are constraints that continue to render candidacy for president a monopoly for the same people, whether they are from the NDP or opposition parties. This makes the candidacy of independents nearly impossible. Instead of wasting people’s mental efforts with candidates who do not fulfill the candidacy requirements in the first place, these constraints should be reduced and laws should be set down guaranteeing fair competition among all candidates, even if they include a president or his son. In fact, political circles in Egypt now indicate that football fans – in the event that Egypt defeats Algeria in a match on 14 November, which is being followed much more closely than political issues – will demand that the player Mohammed Abu Treika, who is loved by fans in Egypt and the Arab world, should rule Egypt: “President Abu Treika.”

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