This is obviously not a political blog, yet I cannot but weigh in on what is set to happen in Egypt today. In the interest of time I’m not writing a full post but rather sharing an extended status I wrote some days ago, as al-Sisi called for supporters to take to the streets for the purpose of giving him popular legitimacy to deal with terrorism and political unrest.
Even if one strongly dislikes the Brotherhood’s politics/is bothered by them closing up all the major streets (both applies to me), please think twice about going down on Friday, giving the military free reign to do what they may with the group and their supporters.
It is as if all the crimes of the military were instantly forgotten with the coup (yes, I call it a coup), and all the dreams of political freedom were given up on at the very same moment. You don’t have to be pro-military abuse to be against Morsi, and you definitely don’t have to be pro-Morsi to opine that throwing your full and unquestionable support behind the forces pulling the strings of Egypt’s politics and economy for so many decades is not a very humane or liberal choice at this point in time.
I was definitely not sad to see Morsi go but I think the way he went will bite us in the back later on and the efforts to address the mechanism by any other name show how embarrassed we really are about it – we’re in a state of cognitive dissonance. I do not wish for his return – I’ve seen very anti-democratic discourse from some individuals of the Brotherhood dealing with executing the “traitors” etc, and I do not believe that they’d hesitate to close liberal shows and channels as we (I’m referring here to liberals like myself) set the precedent for it, including other possible anti-democratic measures. At the same time, painting the entire body of members and supporters as terrorists, excusing the killing of them as a matter of national security is highly illiberal and inhumane.
We should rather fight for reconciliation, for inclusion. Show the ikhwan that we can succeed where they failed in their intolerant, arrogant ways that eventually led to their downfall.