One public square against another, a million against a million, an “uprising against the robbers” against the “red line of legitimacy” as protesters say – that’s how Egypt began its war of titans three days ago, set to reignite today. The fear is great and real. Will the stones hurled in Alexandria and Cairo turn into mass shootings? After all, the country is awash with millions of weapons, the booty from the Libyan uprising. Will the army, which deployed its brigades and put its air force on alert as if to defend the homeland, act this time against citizens rather than the foreign enemy?
Will Morsi give in and quote from Mubarak’s departure speech, or from Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, the exiled former Tunisian leader, or will he carry on grasping at the horns of democratic legitimacy that brought him to power? And the most important question of all: What will reality look like the day after June 30, a date that for at least half of Egyptians signifies the loss of hoped-for democracy and the shattering of what they call “the revolution’s principles”?
There’s no need to prove Morsi’s failures. Egypt is wallowing in a deep financial crisis and its treasury, which sucked in billions of dollars from Saudi Arabia, Qatar and the United States, emptied as quickly as the money flowed in. The constitution that Morsi quickly got approved in a referendum lit fires of criticism and opposition, and the laws that he did manage to pass via the Shura Council (the upper house of the Egyptian parliament) in the absence of an active parliament, only exasperated the anger at what looked like the “Brotherhoodization” of Egypt.
Read more at Haaretz.com.