Tag Archives: President Morsi


            Early in June, I reported on the deepening crisis in Egypt and reported President Morsi was facing serious issues. With Ethiopia proposing to build a hydroelectric dam on the Blue Nile, Egypt could end up with a water crisis. Morsi warned that Egypt would not tolerate having their water supply threatened, but the alternative might be a war. In June, I pointed out that the Morsi government had been a serious disappoint for many Egyptians. Now that situation has exploded in the streets.

            Three days of protests against Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood have turned violent with five Brotherhood members killed by gunfire. Unfortunately, gunfire has become more common on both sides of the conflict. The Brotherhood lines up to support Morsi while the opposition refuses to back down. The country is again in an uproar. American student Andrew Pochter was killed by stabbing. The reverberations from his death have only begun.

The first election in the entire history of Egypt stretching back to pre-historic times is now a year old, but the promises and hopes in the balloting process have not paid off. In the past two years of postrevolutionary crisis, the streets have never been so tense as they are today. It now appears that any sense of unity has disappeared.

The tension has risen to the point where even the United States government is expressing concern about the safety of the embassy. While the Obama administration refuses to express opinions about the leadership of Egypt, it is preparing for the worst.

Adding to the fragility of the political process, the police are fundamentally in a revolt among themselves. The Murbarak’s feared security forces still exist within the Interior Ministry, but are angry over the reversal they have witnessed following the collapse of the Murbarak regime. However, the police have agreed among themselves that no protection will be provided for the Brotherhood headquarters.

In the streets, the populace is divided between those who supported the aristocratic policies of the past and extreme right-wing views of the Brotherhood. Unfortunately, the vast Egyptian masses have lost all confidence in the leadership of the Brotherhood.

The wild card remains the military. Playing their cards close to the vest, they have not openly supported Morse. Fundamentally, they have issued statements saying they will intervene if matters get out of hand. As of July 2, the military has given Morsi 24 hours to get matters under control. Even the leftist opposition have left their own hints suggesting a military coup would be the  only way to solve the Morsi crisis.

Apparently, the fundamental issue on the streets is over who will run the country and set the rules. The Muslim Brotherhood haven’t given up, but are not trusted to do more than create a theocracy like Iran. On the other side, the old Mubark leaders are feared as a return to the past. In turn, the people are circumventing the ballot box and flooding the streets in a riot mode.

Where is it going? No one knows. But you can bet it will be a hot summer in Egypt.

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BLOG 100 – April 1, 2013

 Following a stern warning from Vladimir Putin to stop making threats, North Korea launched a missile attack on Moscow! Havoc reigns … well, not chaos … but April Fool’s Day does. Gotcha last!

Of course, that is about as big a joke as North Korean threats to nuke the USA. Well, we’ve got to have a little levity now and then because so much of the news is dire. Unfortunately, bad news is also the latest from Egypt.

The Egyptians continue their downhill slide. President Morsi has not been able to get the country or himself out of the hot water. And today the steam rises as the water boils. When you start arresting comedians because they are joking about you, matters truly are serious. Bassem Youssef, the Jay Leno of Egyptian TV, has been cracking jokes about the political leaders and the Muslim Brotherhood. Acting like an old fashioned dictator, (or another Mubarak) Morsi sent the public prosecutors after Youssef. When you start using government resources because you think David Letterman’s joke are off base, you are in big time trouble. This year’s Egyptian April Fools Award goes to President Mohamed Morsi for thinking like Kim Jong Un.

However, there’s no joking about the estate of the Egyptian economy. It is bad. Plain bad.

With over two years of rioting in the streets and the controversial election of Morsi and the Brotherhood, the economy is running out of gas (or literally diesel). As many as five people were killed in a recent gas-line brawl. The problem is that Egypt is running out of hard currency needed for fuel imports. Unbelievable as it sounds, Egypt has no refineries and much rely entirely on imports. Most of the economy runs off of diesel fuel and farmers in particular need the energy to run the irrigation pumps that keep their crops producing. The complications continue to fall like tumbling rows of dominos. For example, a driver who runs a bulldozer had to wait in line for half a day to obtain fuel for his tractor. The result is that his pay is cut in half. The ripple effect rolls on through the society.

The United States has already warned that a package of tax increases and subsidy cuts is necessary to obtain a loan from the International Monetary Fund. However, Morsi remains fearful of public reaction. So, the merry-go-round keeps spinning and the country continues to slide toward the bottom.

This week one wheat farmer predicted that if diesel is scare in April and May when the harvest begins, there will be a “revolution of the hungry.” At a local gas station, a truck drive predicted, “People are going to kill each other.”

Sorry. The situation is no laughing matter.

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