Egypt’s Tantawi defies Muslim Brotherhood declaring: Egypt is for all, not just one group

By: Ashraf Ramelah
Voice of the Copts

The military’s intervention in the days after polls closed in Egypt’s presidential election gave the country a reprieve from the looming threat of civil war which a Shafiq win was bound to spark. There were credible reports that Gaza and Libya terrorists smuggled weapons (rockets and missiles) into Suez and Marsa-Matorah and were poised for the signal from the Muslim Brotherhood (MB) once an announcement was made in favor of their opponent, military presidential candidate, Mr. Shafiq. In this instance, the military, corrupt, untrustworthy and well known for its brutality of freedom fighters in the course of the January 2011 uprising, did the country a great favor.

The Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF) implemented martial law (on June 13) in response to many serious reports including threats from the MB to set fire to the country if their candidate lost the election. SCAF confirmed the Supreme Constitutional Court’s ruling invalidating the newly-elected Egyptian Parliament and dissolved the Parliament in obedience to the law (on June 14), honoring the high court and its ruling stating that the MB-majority Parliament was elected unfairly (a verdict issued two days prior to the presidential elections for a case brought by human rights attorneys). This alone served to challenge absolute control by the MB and limit the degree to which Islamic religious law will eventually influence the country’s law. Then SCAF issued a constitutional declaration to prolong military rule (on June 17), in order to be ready for any potential disruption which could ensue as a reaction from the MB militants.

SCAF had one more option, which it did not take — to annul Egypt’s presidential and parliamentary elections in view of comprehensive fraud where fake ballots, running boys, threats and bribes were discovered, along with closed voting polls in Coptic communities.

SCAF, the interim protectors of Egyptian law, turned a blind eye to both the parliamentary and presidential elections where fraud was committed by all parties. In doing so, the military overlooked corrupted elections instead of acting — disgraceful in the face of Egypt’s nascent democracy and its first shot at a real presidential election (as opposed to referendums) in 60 years. However, no one expected anything more from a transitional government attached to the discarded Mubarak regime and making backroom deals with MB leaders, especially when bogus elections have been the norm throughout the history of Egypt’s three dictatorships.

Egyptian freedom fighters are more likely to be relieved than displeased with the bold moves made in the eleventh hour to usurp executive powers from the Muslim Brotherhood, contrary to a recent analysis by one of Egypt’s pro-democracy liberals. In a disturbingly misleading explanation (Washington Times, Egypt’s real ruler: military leader Tantawi, Cynthia Farahut, July 10) contemptuous of SCAF maneuvers before and after the election to salvage the country from Mr. Morsi’s victory, this writer demonizes the military for obstructing the rise of the Muslim Brotherhood. The country’s distrust of SCAF is warranted, but viewing the military as the real problem in this crisis, in light of the ascent of Mr. Morsi, is to defy reason.

Any degree to which the newly-elected Muslim Brotherhood president’s authority is curtailed offers the potential of limiting the damage Mr. Morsi will surely inflict upon Egypt’s true democratic leanings. Disbanding the parliament prevents a dangerous condition and thwarts both the legislative and the executive branches working together to create an Islamic religious state. Now Mr. Morsi has reconvened the Parliament in breach of the court-ordered dissolution of it, claiming to rescue the “well-deserved achievements and gains” (Ikhwanweb.com, July 8). Whose gains? — Surely not that of pro-democracy freedom fighters. However, Morsi’s recognizing the outlawed Parliament is deemed an illegal action by the high court of the land. Will this lead to legal grounds for his removal and incarceration for at least six years as the Egyptian Penalty Law #123 calls for? Not if the U.S. continues to lean toward Muslim Brotherhood rule of Egypt and Mr. Morsi. Egypt’s pro-democracy liberals cannot depend upon the leaders of the free world.

Egypt’s hope for democracy is utterly sunk by the rise of Mr. Morsi and his backers. Pro-democracy liberals of Egypt have no choice but to view the military as a lesser-evil friend and the chaotic internal struggle now going on as favorable — as absurd as that may seem. Would the liberal youth movement prefer to see Mr. Morsi given full expression and unmitigated powers to implement a Sharia government as implied by the article previously mentioned? He will use the reconvened parliament and the new constitution they will write to do so – a dreadful prospect. While the military may be securing their privileged position by siphoning authority from the presidency, Islamic military leaders, although guilty of horrific abuses, have never proven an interest in building initiatives based upon the Muslim Brotherhood creed which states, “The Koran is our constitution, the Prophet is our leader, jihad is our path and death in the name of Allah is our goal.”

With the worst imaginable outcome for the civil state and a clear defeat of the popular will in these first important elections after the removal of Mubarak, Egypt’s freedom advocates certainly have a right to be angry on all accounts and to lean toward exploding once again. If the dissolution of a Muslim Brotherhood-majority parliament (which holds 77% of total seats, including Salafi) by SCAF constitutes a military coup, as some have stated, it is welcome in the face of the inevitable alternative – a “democracy” where strictly-followed teachings of the Quran dominate public life. A recent Pew study shows that 66% of Egyptians in 2012 think that Islam already plays a major role in public life as opposed to 47% in 2010 under Mubarak.

The Muslim Brotherhood is a worldwide terrorist organization banned in Egypt for many years. They cleverly rode the wave of the youth uprising and with their powerful voice heard by a huge population of sympathizers (from years of MB propaganda and charity to the poor) converted the force for true democracy into empty words and rhetoric. Now they lead the state of Egypt and the West has been playing their game, according to some sources from the Egyptian press.

While Egypt and the world awaited the Presidential Election Commission to announce the results in a much delayed press conference, the Arabic press recorded the consensus inside the country. Many Egyptians believe that the U.S. administration threatened SCAF in some way, perhaps militarily, forcing their candidate to bow out of the race and make Mr. Morsi the winner in spite of Mr. Shafiq getting the most votes. This may explain pro-democracy activists shunning Mrs. Clinton’s congratulatory comments for Mr. Morsi following the presidential announcement and their disinterest in her pending visit to Egypt. Some thought SCAF denied Mr. Shafiq his legitimate victory to spare the outbreak of war within Egypt based on missile sightings throughout the country linked to the MB and their foreign allies.

Yet U.S. leaders embrace Egypt’s new leadership, inviting Mr. Morsi for an upcoming visit to the White House. The American taxpayer will continue to support a regime in Egypt fully intent on implementing an uncivil backward system and obliterating religious freedom for a significant portion of Egypt’s population. Let’s be clear about Mr. Morsi’s goals for Egypt by way of his own words from a recent quote, “Today we can establish Sharia law because our nation will acquire well-being only with Islam and Sharia. The Muslim Brothers and the Freedom and Justice Party will be the conductors of these goals.”

Ashraf Ramelah is founder and president of Voice of the Copts, a human rights organization fighting the spread of Islamic supremacy and Sharia law.


Watcher’s Forum: How Should Mitt Romney Respond To President Obama’s Negative Campaigning?

The Watcher’s Council

The big news from last week involved the Obama campaign publicly labeling Mitt Romney a liar and a felon charges that have been debunked by a number of fact checkers, but that President Obama is sticking with. The Council weighs in on how Governor Romney ought to respond to the overtly negative campaigning:

The Razor: I’m not a fan of the high road especially when it comes to Chicago politicians who pride themselves on bringing a gun to a knife fight. But jumping into the mud and duking it out with the Obama campaign will not work because the President will win an even fight thanks to the biased media favoring him.

Instead I might suggest a third way: Portraying Obama as a combination of two of the Left’s most hated figures, Richard Nixon and Joe McCarthy.

Paint Obama as out of touch and unhinged. Suggest he’s walking the hallways of the White House at night talking to the paintings. Portray his re-election brain trust as morally corrupt and incompetent as Nixon’s CREEP. Emphasize his amateurish attacks that weaken the stature of the president and hint at the sheer craziness and stupidity over the lengths Obama will go to land any punch no matter how inconsequential on his opponent (dig up more attacks on Hillary during the 2008 primary too). Finally, resurrect Army’s chief legal representative Joseph Nye Welch’s famous rebuke of Sen. McCarthy, “Have you no sense of decency, sir, at long last? Have you left no sense of decency?” This will emphasize the differences between Romney and Obama, Mitt’s professionalism versus the president’s amateurism, Romney’s impeccable moral character against Team Obama’s amorality, and ultimately the boring sanity of Romney’s leadership versus the cool yet completely inept style of the President.

The Right Planet: Please define “negative campaign” Isn’t it always a “negative campaign”? I always say go upside the head of someone who’s going upside your head.

The Colossus of Rhodey: It’s quite simple: Romney should parry each and every Obama negative ad/statement by turning it around on Obama himself as much as he can — just like he’s been doing of late. But the key is to NEVER LET ANYTHING GO UNANSWERED. And, of course, Mitt needs to intersperse many positive ads in there, too, so as to avoid the inevitable mainstream media criticism. (Which will happen *anyway*, of course, but Mitt should give them the least amount of ammunition possible.)

The Romney campaign will be accused of racism no matter WHAT it does (just look at the accusations of “pandering to white racists” while addressing the NAACP), so it shouldn’t walk on eggs about the issue. Not one bit. Everyone except hardcore leftists are beyond weary of specious “racism” charges, so being unafraid of such will help Mitt win over independents … and maybe even some fed-up liberals!

Joshuapundit: This execrable president has two considerable advantages – his race and the fact that a significant portion of the dinosaur media has a major investment in his re-election. Being aware of this, he has no compunction about not appearing presidential or demeaning his office. Call it the bigotry of low expectations, with all that implies.

Governor Romney, on the other hand, is fair game to be labeled ‘un-presidential’ or even racist if he simply fights fire with fire. While he needed to respond to this quickly (and I think he did a decent job of it) I hope he now has a better idea of the sort of people he’s dealing with. Both the campaign and the Super-pacs have ample ammunition to turn the label of ‘outsourcer’ right back on the president, and to illuminate the more unsavory aspects of his record.

What is vital for Romney is to remain positive, optimistic and share his vision an dplans for America’s future. Even with skewed polls that oversample Democrats by as much as 15%, President Obama is simply not winning enough people over with the sort of attacks he’s mounting…the polls remain essentially deadlocked. Even more importantly, President Obama’s approval rating has fallen from his 2008 numbers in all demographics, particularly among independents and even among groups like black voters where he still holds a substantial majority. The economy is unlikely to get better before election day, and the number of voters who believe the country is on the wrong track remains at 60%. it is going to be very difficult for Barack Obama to be re-elected with those numbers.

The Noisy Room: So far, I think Romney is doing an admirable job as is although he could be more aggressive. He should call out Obama on the lies point by point as he has recently started to do. He should stick to facts on Obama’s record over the last four years and his Marxist associations. I also believe his history of radical connections is more than fair game and Romney should use that. He should also call the President on his racism and eat the rich mentality. Romney should tell us how he will return the US to being a moral, good and free nation.

While he is doing all this though, he has to put forth what he would do differently. How he would change the tax code or get rid of it, how he would grow business for America and put people back to work, how he would reduce the deficit and how he would eliminate Obamacare and let the free market do its thing… Facts and honesty that the American voter can sink their teeth into. Not vague promises and platitudes. He should stress and outline how he would return to Constitutional principles as well and how he will strengthen and protect the US from enemies foreign and domestic.

The Glittering Eye: There are actually two questions here. First, how should the Romney campaign respond to the specific charges currently being leveled, about his tax returns and his record at Bain, particularly with respect to outsourcing. Second, how should the campaign respond to negative ads going forward?

On the first the campaign needs to get out in front of these more. Gov. Romney needs to release the customary 12 years of tax returns. And he should present a clear, simple explanation of his relationship with Bain after 1999 and stick to it.

On the second he should respond quickly and dispassionately to the substantive portions of the attacksand disregard the rest. Every attempt should be made to get out in front of them as soon as possible.

To be elected president, Gov. Romney needs to be seen as a viable president. The Obama re-election is trying to define Gov. Romney to the American people, most of whom haven’t been paying much attention to the primaries, etc., as not a viable president. To that end Gov. Romney should look and act presidential and produce a clear, affirmative statement of what his plans for the country are without enough detail to hang him on. Don’t wait for the Obama reelection campaign to define his views for him. It’s not enough just not to be Obama.

Make sure to tune in every Monday for the Watcher’s Forum. And remember, every Wednesday, the Council has its weekly contest with the members nominating two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council. It’s a weekly magazine of some of the best stuff written in the blogosphere and you won’t want to miss it.

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