[Al-Ahram, Egypt]

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Le Monde, France

The Muslim Brotherhood is the Least of America's Problems

 

"Egypt's military intends to establish - on its own and without outside pressure - the rhythm as well as the limits of the democratization that the country is now engaged in. As in Pakistan, where tensions are at their height, the United States is a prisoner of an Egyptian institution fundamentally hostile to it."

 

EDITORIAL

 

Translated By Pierre Guittard

 

February 11, 2012

 

France- Le Monde - Original Article (French)

Field Marshal Mohamed Tantawi, head of Egypt's Supreme Council of the Armed Forces: He and his associates appear to be whipping up anti-Western sentiment to be able to win the approval of the public, which is less than satisfied with the nation's democratoc transition.

 

AL-JAZEERA VIDEO: A look at the political fractures in Egypt, Feb. 10, 00:39:48RealVideo

One year after Hosni Mubarak's departure from power, the United States is now discovering, to its detriment, that the biggest problem on the banks of the Nile isn't so much the Islamist Muslim Brotherhood, but the General Staff of the Egyptian Army.

 

Since late December of last year, Egypt's Supreme Council of the Armed Forces, which has ruled the country since the dictator's resignation, has mounted a legal and media campaign targeting foreign non-governmental organizations involved in programs to support civil society and democracy. Two American foundations, one of Democratic Party leanings and the other Republican, have been targeted by raids and arrests. More than 40 of their members, including 19 Americans, have been brought up on charges. Despite warnings from the U.S. administration and the threat that civil and military aid for Egypt would be suspended, Egypt's Army officers have shown no intention of backing down. They have decided to play the extreme nationalist card. There are several reasons for what appears to be a deliberate strategy of tension with their American ally.

 

The Army seeks to restore its image with a public that is tired and disappointed by its chaotic management of Egypt's political transition. The military intends to establish - on its own and without outside pressure - the rhythm as well as the limits of the democratization that the country is now engaged in. Finally and especially, the military wants to remind the United States of what a nuisance it can be, to say nothing of the Muslim Brotherhood, which in very short order and for the first time in its history has been called on to run the country after overwhelming victory in parliamentary elections. The Egyptian military has launched this embarrassing challenge to Washington just as the Islamists are feeling the greatest pressure to gain respectability when it comes to the West. This obliges the Brotherhood to take a stand and is likely to incite a war of one-upmanship [to see who can be the most anti-West].

 

Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, General Martin Dempsey, left, walks

next to Egypt Lieutenant General Sami Anan. Dempsey is in Egypt

to meet Field Marshal Mohamed Tantawi, head of the ruling military

council, in part to inquire into the welfare of 19 Americans who face

charges in connection with the activities of U.S. non-profits in Egypt.

 

SEE ALSO ON THIS:
Al Ahram, Egypt: Raids on U.S. NGOs Reveal Scheme to 'Partition' Egypt
El Akhbar, Egypt: 'Maps' Cited in Arrest of Foreign NGO Workers
Thawra Al-Wada, Syria: 'New Mideast' Borders to Be Drawn in Arab Blood
The Frontier Post, Pakistan: America's Secret War on Iran in Balochistan
Jerusalem Post, Israel: Obama's 'Rhetorical Storm'
The Kochi Shimbun, Japan: In Syria, U.N. Security Council Fails the World
Estadao, Brazil: Moscow Rescues Assad: Not a 'Travesty,' a 'Humiliation'
People's Daily, China: Give 'Peace a Chance' in Syria
Mehr News Agency, Iran: Supreme Leader Says U.S. Takes Revenge on Syria
Jerusalem Post, Israel: Obama's 'Rhetorical Storm'
Debka File, Israel: First Foreign Troops in Syria Back the Rebels
Zaman, Turkey: U.S. May Be Hiding Behind Russia's U.N. Veto

 

 

The Egyptian Army is playing a dangerous game. It has fanned the anti-Western flames in a nation already weakened by months of instability and a stalled economy. This strengthens those in Israel and the United States who question whether anything good can be expected from the Arab revolutions. The guarantor of peace between Egypt and Israel since 1979, the Egyptian Army receives significant annual assistance from the United States ($1.3 billion). This manna, which continues an inordinate economic patrimony, has so far failed to turn Egypt's Army into a pro-American institution.

Posted by WORLDMEETS.US

 

Opaque, jealous of its privileges and influence over civil authorities, the Army is the foundation of a political system established in 1952, and which is dying. But to punish it by cutting the flow of aid might make it even more vindictive. As in Pakistan, where tensions are at their height, the United States is a prisoner of an Egyptian institution fundamentally hostile toward it, but which Washington has long supported for geopolitical reasons, closing its eyes to any differences.

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[Posted by WORLDMEETS.US Feb. 16, 3:40am]

 






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