Egyptian army hijacking revolution, activists fear

The Guardian reports:

Egypt’s revolution is in danger of being hijacked by the army, key political activists have warned, as concrete details of the country’s democratic transition period were revealed for the first time.

Judge Tarek al-Beshry, a moderate Islamic thinker, announced that he had been selected by the military to head a constitutional reform panel. Its proposals will be put to a national referendum in two months’ time. The formation of the panel comes after high-ranking army officers met with selected youth activists on Sunday and promised them that the process of transferring power to a civilian government is now under way.

But the Guardian has learned that despite public pronouncements of faith in the military’s intentions, elements of Egypt’s fractured political opposition are deeply concerned about the army’s unilateral declarations of reform and the apparent unwillingness of senior officers to open up sustained and transparent negotiations with those who helped organise the revolution.

“We need the army to recognise that this is a revolution, and they can’t implement all these changes on their own,” said Alaa Abd El Fattah, a prominent youth activist. “The military are the custodians of this particular stage in the process, and we’re fine with that, but it has to be temporary.

“To work out what comes next there has to be a real civilian cabinet, of our own choosing, one that has some sort of public consensus behind it – not just unilateral communiques from army officers.”

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5 thoughts on “Egyptian army hijacking revolution, activists fear

  1. scott

    That’s a tough thing. It’s not reasonable to have the streets blocked with demonstrators, ultimately, that’s utter anarchy. They need to hold on to the threat to return, but if they follow through on the economic concessions that alone should stimulate the economy somewhat. If the military acquiesces to the concerns of the people, that similarly could stimulate tourism.

  2. Dieter Heymann

    In my book revolution is the irreversible transfer of power from old to new groups or classes of society. No revolution has therefore happened yet in Egypt and it is still uncertain that a true revolution will happen there.

  3. Vince J.

    The US backed military is hijacking the revolution. Just ad preasure to the preasure cooker… one day it explodes.

  4. Norman

    This is like a game of chess, one moves, then the other moves, until there is a winner. It does seem as though the demonstrations were well thought out, otherwise, Egypt wouldn’t be where it is today. That the violence was minimal, is a testament to that planning. One step/day at a time.

  5. David Marchesi

    It is unhelpful to call the events in Egypt so far a “revolution” , since it is not at all sure that the power structure has been radically altered, or is likely to be in the near future. We have seen in so many instances since the end of the Soviet bloc that one clique of rich people replaces another- with “mix ‘n match” elements . Further, in the particular case of Egypt, it seems that the “religious” Islamism and, as we so often find closer to home, the decidedly otherworldly attitude of other “religious” people ( see reports on the Salafists)makes the task of genuine secularists doubly hard: leaders of the pious (!!?) will generally line up with the rich and powerful, in their holy terror of popular action. One can hope that a powerful grassroots movement will re-construct the politics in Egypt ( as in Tunisia etc) but solid change can only come with a parallel remake of social and economic structures. The deathly hand of the CIA and, more generally, massive business interests will be difficult to resist unless the Egyptian people go about their re-construction more effectively than, say, the Roumanians, Ukrainians and others in Europe and Latin America.The word “revolution” offends the post-modern “liberals” as well as the neocons, who, betweeen them control virtually every major( OECD etc) power in the world. We cannot expect the Arab world’s stooge-rulers to melt away quickly, with token resistance. Hard times are ahead. I’m quite sure the people on the spot know this , but “Western” opinion, shaped by a gutter media, needs to be reminded of the meaning behind a very big word. The immediate problem is, of course, the military- maybe a Chavez will emerge ? (as in Nasser )

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