Friday,20 July, 2018
Current issue | Issue 1399, (28 June - 4 July 2018)
Friday,20 July, 2018
Issue 1399, (28 June - 4 July 2018)

Ahram Weekly

Legacy of a revolution

This Saturday marks the fifth anniversary of the mass Egyptian uprising against the Muslim Brotherhood regime. During these past years the Egyptian government has worked to reaffirm the cardinal principles that have long governed Egyptian society and that the Muslim Brotherhood attempted to undermine after reaching power behind a democratic mask. Beneath that mask lurked the organisation’s true designs to establish a theocratic system along the lines of the Islamic revolutionary regime in Iran, which wrought havoc on Iranian society and totally isolated the Iranian people from the rest of the world.

On 30 June 2013, tens of millions of Egyptians took to the streets in order to win back their government. They knew that the problem was far greater than a president who was not qualified for the job and incapable of assuming the duties and responsibilities incumbent upon him. The real problem was the “regime of the Muslim Brotherhood supreme guide” which was rapidly working to consolidate power and entrench itself by fostering widespread anarchy, polarisation and upheaval — its means for perpetuating itself despite its 12-month record of incompetence.

That day, the Egyptian people tangibly demonstrated their powers of awareness and foresight in spite of the criticisms that were levelled at them by observers abroad who could not understand what had really taken place on the ground in Egypt during the year of Muslim Brotherhood rule. There was a critical demographic mass in favour of change and putting an end to that dismal period in this country’s history before it would become too difficult to throw off the yoke of a clique that claimed to rule in the name of religion. That mass formed the backbone of support for the measures of 3 July 2013, which provided for an interim president for a set period, the drafting of a new constitution and new presidential elections. 

The Egyptian government, today, is striving to rebuild society on a solid secular footing after the disastrous experience of that attempt on the part of an organisation that fuses religion with politics to implant a theocracy. Therefore, the government is not only working to develop infrastructure and create an environment conducive to local and foreign investment, it has also prioritised comprehensive educational reform. Its project for this is ambitious and could take some years to achieve, but it is essential in order to rebuild society on healthy foundations and to generate the scientific awakening needed to underpin the modern state to which Egyptians have long aspired.

Meanwhile, Egypt continues to deal with the repercussions of the regional upheavals that swept the region following the Arab Spring seven years ago, most notably the confrontation against cross-border terrorism. This has been a foremost concern for the majority of Egyptians since the surge of jihadist-linked terrorism that the Muslim Brotherhood used in its attempt to drag the country into further violence and bloodshed. There has been considerable improvement in the country’s management of the counter-terrorist drive since the 30 June revolution rectified the foreign policy course taken when the banned Muslim Brotherhood attempted to hijack and put it at the service of a regional hegemony project that almost embroiled Egypt in dangerous regional quagmires, such as the Syrian conflict.

The political, economic and social transformation we see in Egypt today is indebted to the great Egyptian grassroots revolution. This event has not received the attention it merits internationally for reasons connected with the complex calculations of Western powers, ignorance of the history of Islamist groups and attempts to use them in a new game of regional hegemony. Nevertheless, in some future phase, the 30 June Revolution will take its rightful place in history.

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