Jonathan Schanzer: The End of the Erekat Era
The end of the Erekat era underscores an unfortunate axiom of Middle East diplomacy: Palestinian leaders won’t take risks for peace. They won’t tell their population that compromise is necessary to bring an end to the conflict and start the hard work of building a state. Instead, they feed their people a steady diet of anti- Zionist conspiracy theories, blame Israel for all their ills, and pump them full of hate for its allies – like America. This is the ultranationalist narrative that has endured for decades.
Martin Kramer: Ayman Nour, former darling of the liberal opposition in Egypt, says Egypt must respect agreements, but “as for Camp David―this is a unique issue with unique aspects―the people will decide on this matter.… For all intents and purposes, Camp David is over, because it is an old treaty and its terms must be improved in a way that will correspond with Egypt’s interests.” The pandering to the Brotherhood begins. Egyptian opposition figure: Revise Israel peace treaty | Ynet
Barry Rubin: What Is the Real Meaning of Egypt’s Revolution?
“The People Toppled the Government,” is al-Ahram’s headline, and the general interpretation of the Egyptian revolution around the world. That’s true but only partly true. Mubarak’s pedestal was shaken by the people but he was pushed off it by the army and the establishment … The revolution in Egypt succeeded because the army didn’t want President Husni Mubarak any more … conclusions that the usual rules of Middle East politics have disappeared is greatly exaggerated … The Muslim Brotherhood will continue to maneuver patiently for power. The military will set limits and implement them. All the radical dictatorships and movements that hate America,the West, Israel, and real democracy are still working all-out (and far more cleverly than their Western opponents) around the clock. If one side is sophisticated and realistic while the other engages in fantasies, who do you expect to win? And those roles are precisely the opposite of what Western hubris thinks.
Victor Davis Hanson: Cairo Ironies: Same Cast of American Characters, Different Play
We can glean from all this that there is no official policy spokesperson. We can also conclude that the administration’s private conversations with Egyptian officials will be explained to the press in a way that makes Obama, Biden, and Clinton seem decisive, wise, and formidable — and increasingly unreliable to their Egyptian counterparts. And we will be told that the Obama administration — which on coming into office jettisoned the entire Bush approach to human rights in the Middle East (“reset”) as hopelessly neoconservative — was all along a strong promoter of freedom and consensual government and is in some way to be credited for the protests (but only if they do not descend into permanent chaos). What is going on here?
Samuel Tadros: The Story of the Egyptian Revolution
So where are we today? Well the answer is still not clear, yet a couple of conclusions are evident.
1. The Gamal inheritance scenario is finished.
2. Mubarak will not run for another Presidential term. His term ends in October and either he will serve the rest of his term or will resign once things cool down for health reasons, which are real. He is dying.
3. The army is in control now. We are heading back to the “golden age” of army rule. The “kids” are no longer in charge. The “men” are.
4. Until the economy fails again, the neo-liberal economic policies are over. Forget about an open economy for some time.
Immediately the task of the army is to stabilize the situation and enforce order. The security forces have been ordered to reappear in the streets starting tonight. The next task will be to deal with the political activists and the Muslim Brotherhood, which now dominates the scene. It is anyone’s guess how that will be done, but in a couple of days the Egyptians will probably be begging the army to shoot them. Third stage will be to return to normal life again with people going back to their jobs and somehow food being made available. Later on however will come the political questions.
Khaled Abu Toameh: Arab Dictators and Radical Islam
For decades, Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak and other Arab dictators used to tell Americans and Europeans that if they did not support them, the result would be Muslim extremists coming to power.
This is why these dictators never took drastic measures against Islamic fundamentalist groups in their countries. Even though Egypt and some Arab countries occasionally cracked down on these groups, they always made sure that the Islamists would stay around.
This pattern gave the Muslim Brotherhood a chance to grow and win over more supporters, as the local people became more and more disgusted both with their dictators and the Western governments who supported them
Instead of focusing their attention on the Islamists, Arab dictators chose to chase secular reformists, liberals, democrats, newspaper editors and human rights activists; by suppressing the emergence of these people, the Arab dictatorships paved the way for the rise of radical extremists.
This is the reason the Islamist groups in the Arab countries are much more organized than the pro-democracy Facebook youth who launched the popular uprisings in Tunisia and Egypt.
Joshua Stacher: Egypt’s Democratic Mirage
By playing the role of both arsonist and firefighter, the Egyptian government has forced protesters fleeing the regime to seek refuge with the regime. In so doing, has the government ensured its survival?
Ayaan Hirsi Ali: Muslim Brotherhood will likely win next poll
The secular democratic and human rights groups in Egypt and in the rest of the Arab world show little sign of understanding these facts of political life. The Muslim Brotherhood, on the other hand, gets at least three out of four. True, they have never been in office. But they have a political program and a vision not only until the next elections, but in their view until the hereafter. And they are very good at reminding Egyptians of why the other party’s policies will be ungodly and therefore catastrophic for Egypt. Above all, they have succeeded in embedding themselves in Egyptian society in ways that could prove crucial.