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Table Of Contents

INTRODUCTION
Overview
Egypt’s Visibility in the New Middle East
Egypt as a Security Concern
FAILING, OR FAILED?
DEMOCRACY
THE “NEW MIDDLE EAST” AND ANTI-AMERICANISM
Roadblocks to Democracy in Egypt
EGYPT’S SIGNIFICANCE IN THE REGION
THE MILITARY AND SECURITY SERVICES
AID, NEED, AND VIOLENCE IN A “FAILING STATE”
Development and Violence
Economic Standing
SUBSIDIES
Poverty, Alienation, and the Link to Militancy
LITERACY AND GENDER INEQUALITY
NATIONAL CHARACTER ARGUMENTS
EGYPT’S DEMOCRATIZATION IN THE REGIONAL CONTEXT
EGYPT’S POLITICAL DEVELOPMENT
Democratic Trends versus Dynastic Succession
INDICATORS FOR DEMOCRATIZATION
EGYPT’S REGIONAL ROLE
EGYPT’S ROLE IN GLOBAL JIHAD
ISLAMIST VIOLENCE
HEREDITARY SUCCESSION?
LEADERSHIP ALTERNATIVES?
IS THERE A U.S. ROLE IN DEMOCRATIZATION?
ISLAMISM AND RADICALISM IN EGYPT
Growth or Diminishment of Violence?
ISLAM AND POLITICS IN EGYPT
Shifts Under President Anwar Al-Sadat
Islamist Methodological Arguments
RADICALS AND MODERATES
A WAR WITH ISLAMISM
The Brotherhood and the Government
OTHER TYPES OF REPRESSION
Truce
Zawahiri
REEMEGENCE OF JIHAD IN EGYPT?
REVENGE OR UNDERDEVELOPMENT?
Other New Actors—Women
AL-QA’DISM AND SECURITY
Moderates: The Greater Enemy?
BEDOUIN RADICALISM
NO SOLUTION?
Other Objections to Moderate Islamists
IDEOLOGICAL CONTAINMENT OF THREATS
PERPETUAL TRANSITIONS?
2005 ELECTIONS
The Judiciary in the Recent Elections
PREEMPTIVE REFORM?
CONCLUSION
ENDNOTES
REFERENCES
GLOSSARY
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
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EGYPT: SECURITY, POLITICAL, AND ISLAMIST CHALLENGES Sherifa Zuhur

EGYPT: SECURITY, POLITICAL, AND ISLAMIST CHALLENGES Sherifa Zuhur

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Published by ikhwanscope
SUMMARY
This monograph approaches three issues in contemporary
Egypt: failures of governance and political
development, the continued strength of Islamism, and
counterterrorism. It is easier to tackle their contours in
Egypt if they are considered separately. They are not,
however, separate or independent; continuing to treat
them as mutually exclusive conditions will lead to
further crisis down the road.
Egyptian failures of governance have taken
place through three eras: monarchy and the liberal
experiment, the period of Arab socialism, and Egypt’s
reopening to the West under Presidents Sadat and
Mubarak. In combination with a large military and
security establishment in Egypt, these failures meant
a continuing authoritarian government has served and
used its military and security apparatuses to block
significant political transformation. The failures of
governance provide grievances for Islamist militants
and moderates, and also for many ordinary Egyptians,
and inhibit the growth of political or civic maturity.
The Egyptian government forged a truce with its
most troublesome Islamist militants in 1999. However,
violence emerged again from new sources of Islamist
militancy from 2003 into 2006. All of the previously
held conclusions about the role of state strength
versus movements that led to the truce are now
void as it appears that “Al-Qa’idism” may continue
to plague Egypt, and indeed, the region as a whole.
In consequence, an important process of political
liberalization was slowed, and in 3 to 4 years, if not
sooner, Egypt’s political security and stability will be
at risk. Widespread economic and political discontent
viii
might push that date forward. In addition, continuing
popular support for moderate Islamism could lead to
a situation where the current peace could erode, unless
a comprehensive peace settlement to the Palestinian-
Arab-Israeli conflict is achieved and if various other
factors were to come into play.
Observations for the future and recommendations
made in this monograph include the following ideas:
1. U.S. policymakers can expect to see the continued
emergence of radical Islamist elements in Egypt
due to the regional spread of jihadist ideology,
failures of governance, repression and injustice
in counterterrorist measures, and antipathy to
Western and Israeli policies.
2. Economic progress is being made in Egypt, but
more needs to be done to ensure the stability of
the population.
3. Policymakers need to acknowledge the
strength of Islamism in Egypt and consider
that the legalization and inclusion of moderate
Islamists—a trend in Iraq—may inhibit radical
Islamists as well as popular disaffection.
4. While the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt is
committed to justice for the Palestinians, the
organization as a whole has shifted on many
other issues. It would be unwise to support
governmental attacks on this group simply on the
basis of this issue, or to promote democratization
only if it excludes Islamist actors.
5. Policymakers should realize that Egypt will
come to a political turning point by 2011, if not
sooner.
6. U.S. policymakers need to educate themselves
about the second effects of Egypt’s economic
ix
transformation and development plans. They
should encourage the Egyptian government to
reform public education and health-care more
thoroughly and establish a means for citizens
to participate in consensual community-based
decisions. A more civic-minded culture needs
to be created.
7. U.S. policymakers should insist that the
Egyptian government ensure the political and
human rights of citizens, ending the use of
torture, extra-legal physical abuse, and irregular
detentions, and reinstate judicial oversight of
the electoral process. The mistreatment of the
political opposition, prisoners, and the electoral
violence and irregularities of the last several
elections have no place in a free and democratic
Egypt.
8. U.S. policymakers should be aware of Egyptians’
distaste for American views expressed about
I
SUMMARY
This monograph approaches three issues in contemporary
Egypt: failures of governance and political
development, the continued strength of Islamism, and
counterterrorism. It is easier to tackle their contours in
Egypt if they are considered separately. They are not,
however, separate or independent; continuing to treat
them as mutually exclusive conditions will lead to
further crisis down the road.
Egyptian failures of governance have taken
place through three eras: monarchy and the liberal
experiment, the period of Arab socialism, and Egypt’s
reopening to the West under Presidents Sadat and
Mubarak. In combination with a large military and
security establishment in Egypt, these failures meant
a continuing authoritarian government has served and
used its military and security apparatuses to block
significant political transformation. The failures of
governance provide grievances for Islamist militants
and moderates, and also for many ordinary Egyptians,
and inhibit the growth of political or civic maturity.
The Egyptian government forged a truce with its
most troublesome Islamist militants in 1999. However,
violence emerged again from new sources of Islamist
militancy from 2003 into 2006. All of the previously
held conclusions about the role of state strength
versus movements that led to the truce are now
void as it appears that “Al-Qa’idism” may continue
to plague Egypt, and indeed, the region as a whole.
In consequence, an important process of political
liberalization was slowed, and in 3 to 4 years, if not
sooner, Egypt’s political security and stability will be
at risk. Widespread economic and political discontent
viii
might push that date forward. In addition, continuing
popular support for moderate Islamism could lead to
a situation where the current peace could erode, unless
a comprehensive peace settlement to the Palestinian-
Arab-Israeli conflict is achieved and if various other
factors were to come into play.
Observations for the future and recommendations
made in this monograph include the following ideas:
1. U.S. policymakers can expect to see the continued
emergence of radical Islamist elements in Egypt
due to the regional spread of jihadist ideology,
failures of governance, repression and injustice
in counterterrorist measures, and antipathy to
Western and Israeli policies.
2. Economic progress is being made in Egypt, but
more needs to be done to ensure the stability of
the population.
3. Policymakers need to acknowledge the
strength of Islamism in Egypt and consider
that the legalization and inclusion of moderate
Islamists—a trend in Iraq—may inhibit radical
Islamists as well as popular disaffection.
4. While the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt is
committed to justice for the Palestinians, the
organization as a whole has shifted on many
other issues. It would be unwise to support
governmental attacks on this group simply on the
basis of this issue, or to promote democratization
only if it excludes Islamist actors.
5. Policymakers should realize that Egypt will
come to a political turning point by 2011, if not
sooner.
6. U.S. policymakers need to educate themselves
about the second effects of Egypt’s economic
ix
transformation and development plans. They
should encourage the Egyptian government to
reform public education and health-care more
thoroughly and establish a means for citizens
to participate in consensual community-based
decisions. A more civic-minded culture needs
to be created.
7. U.S. policymakers should insist that the
Egyptian government ensure the political and
human rights of citizens, ending the use of
torture, extra-legal physical abuse, and irregular
detentions, and reinstate judicial oversight of
the electoral process. The mistreatment of the
political opposition, prisoners, and the electoral
violence and irregularities of the last several
elections have no place in a free and democratic
Egypt.
8. U.S. policymakers should be aware of Egyptians’
distaste for American views expressed about
I

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Published by: ikhwanscope on Dec 26, 2009
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