Egypt: Return to dictatorship

After the military seized power in Egypt, democratic freedoms are slowly reversed. The Egyptian Armed Forces took power on 3 July 2013 after many demonstrations by secular forces against the govermment of President Morsi. Abdel Fattah Saeed Hussein Khalil el-Sisi was the military leader who disposed the democratic elected president and turned the nation back into dictatorship. The problem is that many secular Egyptians seem to support the military, pure because they fear the Islamic opposition led by the Muslim Brotherhood!

The Arab Republic of Egypt was founded as a military dictatorship and has always been dominated by politicians who have a military background. Gamal Abdel Nasser Hussein was the second military president of Egypt and ruled from 1956 till 1970. His regime was based on Arab-socialism and Arab-nationalism. Although anti-imperialist, he opposed Marxism and denounced it. His regime ordered the arrest of communists and socialists. Nasser was called a ''Marxist'' by the western world for his anti-imperialism, although the Egyptian Communist Party was banned and its members jailed. Nasser ruled dictatorial for almost 14 years, banning all opposition to his rule!

When Nasser died, he was succeeded by his vice president; Anwar El Sadat. Unlike Nasser this new Egyptian president was not friendly with the USSR. Sadat expelled the military Soviet advisor's and he reformed the Egyptian Army, which was still in a state of shock after the disastrous 1967 six day war. Although he limited the power of the state security forces, Sadat soon became hatred by many Arabs for his peace talks with Israel. Egypt was the first Arab nation to recognize the State of Israel and Sadat became the most hated Arab leader in the middle east. Radical Muslims wanted him death and on 6 October 1981, Islamic soldiers inside the Egyptian Army, attacked the president during a military parade. Sadat died during the shooting and his vice president was wounded. 
Mohammed Hosni Said Mubarak, was Sadat's vice president and took over the presidency. He became vice president in 1975 and was commander of the Egyptian Air Force!

Egypt turned away from Arab-socialism and adopted a capitalist economy, under president Mubarak. The nation became a one party dominate state, with the National Democratic Party as ruler. Opposition parties to Mubarak were only allowed if they did not criticize the president too much. Those who did criticize were harassed by the Egyptian Secret Police and finally banned. Under Mubarak the Egyptian Communist Party was not legalized, also the Muslim Brotherhood remained banned. But world capitalism was very happy with this right-wing dictator. Mubarak privatized the economy, now capitalism was the ruling force in Egypt.

Many Egyptians hated the capitalist government, but could do little to oppose it. Western governments supported Mubarak, because he opposed Islamic terrorism and supported US imperialism. Egyptian workers were not supported by the western world and had to wait until January 2011, before they united to oppose the dictatorial government. After the Tunisian Revolution forced dictator Ben Ali to flee, Egyptians wanted Mubarak gone too. But the Egyptian Army opened fire and killed more then 800 people. Finally the military ordered Mubarak to leave office. The Egyptian Army took over and installed a provisional government. Many workers believed the army would stand with them, but they were mistaken. The generals
 had a reason why they removed Mubarak from power. The military feared a popular uprising that could destroy their economic interests!

After the first democratic election in Egyptian history, the Muslim Brotherhood under the name Freedom and Justice Party, won the presidential election. Mohamed Morsi became the first Islamic president of Egypt and this was not liked by the Egyptian Army. Soon conflicts arose between the secular Army and the Islamic led government. Also the Egyptian economy was still capitalist and workers demanded changes. But as a conservative; Mohamed Morsi was in favor of keeping capitalism alive. So the workers of Egypt felt betrayed. Many believed the Islamic; Freedom and Justice Party would end the inequality, that ruled Egypt since Mubarak came to power. After many confrontations between secular Egyptians and Islamic Egyptians, General Abdel Fattah el-Sisi ordered Morsi to step down. He refused and was arrested by the military on 3 July 2013!

With Morsi arrested, the secularists allied themselves with the Egyptian Army. A huge mistake as the army has no interests in a democratic state. Now the supporters of Morsi were harassed and jailed by the new military government, who soon started to limit political freedoms in the name of fighting terrorism. The Egyptian economy is severely hurt by the unrest over the last three years, many tourists choose to stay away. This means that the nation is losing a lot of income!

Crime is also on the rise as petty thieves and criminals are getting away with their crimes, now that the hatred security police of Mubarak is gone. Egyptians are also blinded by ethnic hatred and religious fundamentalism towards minorities. Coptic Christians have been assaulted and murdered by radical Muslims, who believe Egypt should be an Islamic state win-out Christians. Also woman are not equal to men. Therefore 20 year old; Aliaa Elmahdy did something in 2011, that shocked the Islamic population. She choose to post a nude picture of herself on her Blogspot page. Elmahdy said it was a scream against a society of violence, racism, sexism, sexual harassment and hypocrisy. Born into a deep religious family, she soon grew to hate her father who beat her up if she spoke out against his religious dogma. By the age of 16, Aliaa Elmahdy became an atheist and started to oppose religion. Her parents forced her to visit a religious institution, were Islamic doctors tried everything ( even torture ) to ''cure'' her. She faked her submission and fled her parents house after the fall of the Mubarak regime. Elmahdy positioned herself as a secular, liberal, feminist, vegetarian, individualist Egyptian and an atheist since turning 16!

Early 2014, almost 98% of the Egyptian voters said YES to a new constitution. But since only 38,5% of all Egyptians choose to vote, this YES vote cannot be called the opinion of the people. Many feel betrayed by the politics of the military government and the anger is running deep. The new constitution is written by an unelected commission and it allows the military to keep their economic interests ( ownership of enterprises ). Although strikes are called a ''right'' the new constitution still gives the government the choice, how to regulate this ''right''!

The Egyptian secularists think the government is helping ''their'' 2011 revolution. But this is a lie, the Egyptian Armed Forces only care about their capitalist enterprises and the profits they create. American right-wing politicians have chosen to support the military government of Egypt, purely because it disposed of a Islamic government. Conservatives from the Republican Party in the USA have visited Egypt and gave their political support to the militarists, who have limited democratic rights and the freedom of speech. Now the nation is split between the secular pro-govermment Egyptians and the Islamic anti-government Egyptians. Those who still support Morsi say that the military destroyed a democratic government, the secularists and the military say that Morsi wanted to create a Islamic dictatorship. This is believed by many anti-Islamic people in the western world, who's fear of Islam is so great they would support a military dictatorship over a democratic government!

We revolutionary socialists choose to oppose the military and the Islamic forces. Unfortunate some of us choose to support 
Mohamed Morsi during the second round of the 2012 presidential elections. The Revolutionary Socialists of the International Socialist Tendency ( IST ) told the working class of Egypt to vote for Mohamed Morsi against Ahmed Shafik, former prime minister under Mubarak. By calling workers to vote on Mohamed Morsi, the Revolutionary Socialists allied themselves with the reactionary Muslim Brotherhood, this was criticized by those revolutionary socialists who rejected both Mohamed Morsi and Ahmed Shafik!

Now Egypt is controlled by the military. Bit by bit, the army is rebuilding the previous dictatorship. General Abdel Fattah el-Sisi hopes to become the new Mubarak, by winning the next ( not free ) elections. It was El-Sisi who removed president Morsi from power on 3 July 2013. Many secularists and leftist supported him, inclusing the Revolutionary Socialists of the IST. Because the political left-wing of Egypt has now allied themselves with the military, the political opposition is led by the Muslim Brotherhood. Leftist forces have discredit themselves when they supported the military coup. The Revolutionary Socialists ( RS ) of the IST say they oppose both the military and the Islamic opposition, yet during the presidential elections they told workers to vote on 
Mohamed Morsi. Also because they joined the National Salvation Front ( NSF ), they give support to the military coup. It was the NSF who supported General Abdel Fattah el-Sisi against president Morsi!

As Egypt slides down into economic chaos and political dictatorship, radical Islamic forces carry out violence and terrorist attacks. Most of these attacks are not coming from the Muslim Brotherhood. The radical Islamic; Al-Gama'a al-Islamiyya ( Islamic Group ) are causing more blood and death, then Morsi and his Muslim Brotherhood. He is still held a prisoner by the Egyptian Armed Forces, as of February 2014. Young Aliaa Elmahdy fled Egypt in 2013 for fear of being jailed, after being kidnapped, receiving death threats and escaping a rape attempt. The removal of Mubarak did not led to woman liberation. Male chauvinism combined with religious backwardness, will keep Egypt dark for a long time. Still we revolutionary socialists tell Egyptian workers, that they can have no trust in the military government or the Islamic opposition led by the Muslim Brotherhood. Only a workers government on a socialist program can end the dictatorship. The Revolutionary Socialists of the IST and other leftist forces are not helping if they choose to join alliances that support the military government. A workers party is needed that stands for workers, woman, poor people and a democratic socialist federation of the middle east!

The new military government has no intention
of surrendering political power to the Egyptian people!

Struggle, Solidarity, Socialism

Struggle, Solidarity, Socialism