Monday, August 26, 2013

Airborne elephant watch: Egypt is still there, over to the left

Photo by Gregory Colbert.
Did I tell you? Did I tell you? Not here, perhaps, but over at BooMan's place, where the elevated tone often inspires me to non-snark: The "Egyptian military" consists of more than one phenomenon. The generals, who gladly threw Mubarak's person under the bus when he was no longer able to rule, continue to espouse his ideology, which [jump]
is nothing but garden-variety strongmanism; while the rank and file continue to support the Revolution, not necessarily heroically, but still.

As the soldiers refused to murder the demonstrators on Tahrir Square two years ago, so the generals fear they will do now, which is (a) why they have been making Ministry of the Interior police do all the murdering, and (b) why they have now come up with the astonishingly vile and hypocritical plan of bringing the Noble Qur'an into their efforts, as reported in today's Times:
“When somebody comes who tries to divide you, then kill them, whoever they are,” Ali Gomaa, the former mufti appointed under President Hosni Mubarak, is seen telling soldiers in a video made by the military’s Department of Moral Affairs. “Even with the sanctity and greatness of blood, the prophet permits us to fight this,” he said in the video, likening opponents of the military takeover — implicitly, the Brotherhood — to an early Islamic sect that some scholars considered to be infidels, and thus permissible to kill. Mr. Gomaa later said the military had shown the video to troops and riot police officers across Egypt.
Yes, Mubarak's mufti is telling the soldiers that it is halal to murder unarmed men, women, and children committing the sin of adhering to a particular set of beliefs; as bad as the worst takfir Salafism without the excuse of the proponents having any religious beliefs of their own.

The good side: soldiers are rarely fooled by this kind of obscenity. They weren't fooled by the rather less disgusting antics when Mubarak himself was in power, and they are not likely to be fooled now. The bad side: generals usually get their way anyhow.

Two years ago the Revolution won, but the subsequent elections were won by politicians. I thought the Muslim Brothers would be able, however irritating to the non-pious like me, to govern—out of power, those Da'wa groups are better at providing social services than any of the governments they oppose, from Algiers to Zamboanga—but in this case I was wrong. Although if they spent more time playing political chicken than governing, could be Mubarakite obstruction was the reason for that.
Image by Marit Nore.

It's hard to see how the Revolution can win a second time. There's always a Big Dick around to coopt it, isn't there? Liberals keep condemning themselves to irrelevance like our emoprogs here, focusing on issues that are only of interest to people with servants, as it were. (Not that they're not important, but that they're just not on the minds of The People trying to feed families and drink clean water. If you want to have a revolution, you just have to have some of The People on board. Also, they deserve food and clean water.)

We'll see what happens. 

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