He managed to broker a truce between Hamas and Israel in their latest encounter, promised to honor Egypt’s international agreements and to top it all, taking decisive and swift action against the “Islamists” in Sinai.
These actions apparently endeared Morsi to those who were worried of drastic changes in Egypt’s policy, especially the US and Israel.
The revolution in Egypt which united almost all the different forces and factions in an effort to remove a dictator ultimately resulted in formal approval of the Muslim brotherhood as the leading political force. In comparison, the Muslim brotherhood is the single most popular political organization in the country at present.
However, the win for Morsi was not as decisive as the Muslim brotherhood and its supporters would have hoped for. With 12 million of those who participated voting against the Egyptian president, the country is practically divided. There are huge challenges ahead and reconciliation will not come easily.
In addition to a host of serious problems ranging from poverty to lawlessness inherited from Mubarak; stability in democracies that have widely opposing views, especially secularism vs. Shariah is a complex matter to resolve, especially during times of daily and widespread unrest. What Morsi needs is time, time that Mr. Morsi simply does not have as a counter revolution is ever more boiling.
Internal issues as hard as they maybe, poverty, unemployment, weakened institutions and thousand others, are not the only challenges for Mr. Morsi as he is facing even tougher challenges from abroad. The relative ease with which he managed to exert pressure on Hamas might have made him come across as a strong partner for maintaining the status quo but also accentuated the fact that ideologically the two sides are practically indistinguishable.
As far as the CIA and the Mosad are concerned, Egypt’s Muslim brotherhood is no different from Hamas. In fact, if you revisit comments made about the party before the revolution, they are both considered just short of being al-Qaeda and that scenario is simply too grave to tolerate; hence the muted reaction during the Mubarak era oppression of the Brotherhood.
Though Morsi has made reassuring statements such as his commitment to Egypt’s agreements with Israel, in order to appease perhaps, to the Americans and the Israelis trusting the man is simply too risky. Their policy of non-tolerance to “Islamists” has a long and wide history and there is no reason for it to change now.
Warming up to Iran has also not gone unnoticed by the enemies of the Persian Gulf state which seems to be breaking one political barrier after another. With Morsi Iran was in the path to bridging the gap with all Arabs who wouldn’t otherwise warm up to Iran.
If in a short time Morsi has managed to ease the blockade on “hard liner” in Gaza and setting a openly practical example on how to deal with “brothers” in faith in the case of Iran, what more can he do if his leadership solidifies and ripens?!
Since Israel and the US have no reason to mistrust the Egyptian military as it is still mainly controlled by generals from Mubarak’s era, who notably largely got away with impunity for their crimes of protecting decades’ long dictatorship, the only risk remains to be Morsi and his Brotherhood. More reassuringly, the Egyptian army has never been a threat to Israel or other US interests, the army is still an ally as far as they are concerned and that is the main reason American money is still pouring into the Egyptian armed forces.
The risks emanating from the brotherhood are simply objectionable, and in the case that all the elements needed to topple Morsi are in place as it is now, why wait? Though the talk that Israel is one way or another involved in the increase in disasters such as succession of train accidents, general lack of insecurity, and increase in abductions, etc might be considered farfetched, there are more reasons to believe that Israel is interested in meddling in Egypt’s affairs with the hope of altering the political climate of the country.
Whilst the US is busy assisting anti-Assad forces even the ones it considers hard liners and enemies, how then would it be doing the opposite in the case of Egypt! In Syria, the end game is to have Bashaar removed, among other reasons, in order to have more control over military hardware that is meant for Hezbollah from Iran and for winning a tamed Syria. Then after, use the Jihadists who would definitely want to take over the country if and when Bashar is toppled as pretext to return the Syrian army and the country’s infrastructure behind by decades.
Egypt is different, Facebook and Twitter are still available and are for the most part, if we take the words of Julian Assange to be true, tools created or found out to be effective in assisting the CIA and Mosad attempts to reshape the world, then it is prudent to do it now and get it done with. Just make the counter revolution sack all the resolve in Morsi and his party and during these economic hardships why not? It is cost-effective and involvement is covert. The rift between the secularists and the Sharia advocates in the Arab world is perhaps the newest strongest tool under their disposal.
The major question is which state Israel prefers, a stable Egypt with an “Islamist” government and leader or unstable Egypt which would be volatile; that is the Dilemma for Israel and the US. One thing is certain; a stable Egypt under Morsi that will most likely seek to strongly pursue the Palestinian cause and exact other unfavorable stances is less desirable than the unrest that will keep Egypt busy with its internal turmoil’s making room for Israel to continue business as usual and denying Iran a stronger partner.
Statements to comfort the Americans have also been matched by others which indicate that Morsi is taking a different path. For example, the Egyptian president has said and hinted on more than one occasion that Egypt was “no longer subordinate” to US foreign policy.
For Morsi, friends are hard to find as there is also no reason to believe that those Arab countries that have sided against all movements who derive their vision from Sharia would suddenly soften their approach to the Brotherhood.
If we were to weigh the risks facing Mohammed Morsi, the most urgent is of course the strengthening counter revolution which gets bloodier by the day and Morsi could end up facing the same fate as Hosni Mubarak’s. But the major challenges come from Israel and a superpower in decline that is fighting “Muslim hard liners” around the world via drones, sanctions and even outright wars. The enemies of anything resembling Sharia are likely to stay steadfast and could end up being the tipping factor for the first democratically elected president of Egypt.
Unlike Hamas political victory which was out rightly denied by the Israelis and their allies, the Muslim brotherhood has been incredibly accepted and the revolution allowed taking its course. However, the antagonism against any precedence for a successful largely Sharia-based government is still in high gear.
The difference here is that the US and Israel have too many goings in their plate. Syria and Iran are “dangers” that require more immediate attention. As for the brotherhood, a softer approach of mobilizing and supporting the opposition and perhaps other means of sabotage are the preferred methods for now.
As far as Israel is concerned, it is on track with its main objectives. With Turkey now fully onboard in the massive effort to remove president Asad and the potential for chocking Hezbollah militarily as a consequence, Israel is confident of victory. The major objective is to keep containing Iran as the sole pursuit in the near future.
The challenge for Israel however, is that none of these situations is near settled and won’t be finalized as dreamt by Israelis. In the case of the brotherhood, the struggle will be long and tougher especially with foreign interference but the Muslims of faith have proven to be the most organized and the most determined in Egypt.
They withstood most difficult of conditions during Mubarak era but they still maintained massive public support and maintain the will to be prominent. There is also another danger for Israel in the case that Morsi exacts revenge by steering anti Israel sentiment for political gains. That is the only item that the Muslim Brotherhood is in agreement with all other political forces.