Ominous In Egypt

Today the country’s interim president cut short a series of meetings between his government and Western envoys – including a tag team of McCain and Butters – meant to mediate Egypt’s factions:

In the statement Wednesday, interim President Adly Mansour said the international efforts had “ended today.” Additionally, the statement said the Brotherhood and its allies bear “full responsibility for the failure and what will follow.” After meetings Tuesday, U.S. Senators John McCain and Lindsey Graham expressed concerns that mediation efforts might fail. McCain said, “These folks are just days or weeks away from all-out bloodshed.”

Bassem Sabry elaborates on why Egyptians continue to sour on America’s role post-coup:

Some Islamists retain anger over the US being too accommodating of Hosni Mubarak and his repressive tactics. Now, almost all Islamists think America has abandoned Morsi and “electoral legitimacy” after his July 3 overthrow. Of course, many also still retain the belief that the US is against any form of Islamism by nature. They see the recent policy on events in Egypt as proof.

Many in the anti-revolution camp, in turn, think Obama and the US gave up on Mubarak too easily, were too friendly and non-critical of the Brotherhood, if not in strong direct support or even outright control of them. Then, with some irony, many in the liberal, nationalist and leftist pro-revolution camps also share the same view of the relationship between the US and the Brotherhood, while also believing that recent US policy and rhetoric on June 30 and Morsi’s overthrow to be unfair and hypocritical, not sufficiently recognizing the “evils” that the Brotherhood has committed. A large percentage of them also even see the US as trying to protect former allies (or, in that view, proxies) rather than conducting fair policy.

Fouad Ajami observes that the “national mood is foul”:

In their eagerness to overlook their defeat at the polls, the secularists are fierce in their conviction that it was a “revolution” that swept Mohamed Morsi aside.  One figure of the Old Regime, Amr Moussa, a former foreign minister and Secretary General of the Arab League, insists that Morsi had been brought down by “popular impeachment.”  Thus has June 30, the time of the big street protests that led to the coup d’état, been enshrined as a seminal event in Egypt’s political calendar – on par with July 23, 1952, and with January 25, 2011, which marks the agitation that overthrew Hosni Mubarak.  For now, there is infatuation with the army and its commander; there is even revisionism about the police, once the stuff of nightmares for the secularists.

Egypt needs no more revolutionary dates.  What its condition calls for is a recognition of the schism that has brought its political life, once again, into a historical stalemate, and the rule of the army.

Alexander Brock and Amr T. Leheta see an opening for the Salafists:

Their pragmatism has even resulted in the most unlikely of alliances: [leading Salafist party] al-Nour ultimately sided with liberal forces in support of the military intervention against Morsi, perhaps yet again seeing an opportunity to implement its own vision. … [N]ow popularity, not purity of doctrine, that is the compass for al-Nour’s leadership in its decision-making, made clear by al-Nour party spokesman Nader Bakkar’s statement that although twenty percent of its followers is disappointed in its position regarding the military intervention against Morsi, eighty percent remains faithfully aligned.