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Truth about Egypt's crackdown against Muslim Brotherhood
Thursday August 22, 2013 3:11 PM, Catherine Shakdam

As the West remains ambivalent towards Egypt and its bloody crackdown against the Muslim Brotherhood, treading carefully as its experts are trying to assess where the wind will blow next before asserting its position, Egypt is ever increasingly slipping under a military-led dictatorship.

Astonishingly most Egyptians continue to stand idle as their fellow countrymen are being hunted down like animals, brainwashed into believing that indeed the Muslim Brotherhood is an evil radical terror organization while the military, led by General Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, stands at the nation's savior.

In the most bizarre twist, the very people who only a year ago gave their vote to the Muslim Brotherhood, not once or twice but three consecutive times, are now calling for the death of its members as if they were no more than mere animals ready for the slaughter.

The very Egypt which back in 2011 at the beginning of the Islamic Awakening slammed former President Hosni Mubarak's regime for targeting unarmed protesters, has now given its military a complete carte blanche over the murder of the Brotherhood.

As it turns out Egyptians seem now to have a very different set of values whereby the life of one Brotherhood member accounts for less than nothing and his or her rights as citizens are forfeit as per his or her political affiliation.

The country which sought to give the Arab world a lesson in democracy is now making the Spanish Inquisition look like child play.

Unarmed protesters have been executed in the streets of Cairo, Alexandria, Assuit and Suez by the thousands without any Egyptian ever objecting. Emboldened by Egypt's silence over the death of its children, the security forces have viciously tortured political prisoners, men and women confounded, without an eyebrow ever being raised in disapproval.

Egyptians' constitutional and civil rights have been trampled a hundred times over and yet no one has cared to speak up.

In a complete role reversal it is westerners who now seem unable and unwilling to stomach Egypt's mass killings of civilians, with international rights organizations and public speakers voicing their condemnation; arguing that by any given standard the killing of unarmed civilians could never be justified; while Egyptians and Arab countries are quite happily trotting behind Saudi Arabia's anti-Brotherhood rhetoric, strong in their belief that Islam is the real evil of the world.

In perfect symmetry, the Brotherhood, the Sunni expression of political Islam, finds itself in the same "radical" box as the Hezbollah - Shia Lebanese political faction led by Seyyed Hassan Nasrallah.

One has only to look at how Hezbollah has been vilified by the media and especially Saudi Arabia to understand that the real modern enemy of Arab imperialism is political Islam, all sects included.

Strong of the support of Al Saud, the Egyptian military has so far played deaf to Western criticism, however mild and timid, confident Saudi Arabia would, as it announced, cover whatever funding losses the Egyptian state will incur as a result of its repression policy against the Brotherhood.

It took the European Union an estimated 3,000 deaths before it decided to suspend its arm deals with Egypt.

In comparison, Turkey only had to fire a few tear gas canisters at protesters to be branded a tyrannic regime, while Iran's claim to a civilian research nuclear program was incentive enough for the UN Security Council to roll out a series of sanctions... But who's talking about double-standards!

Even if Egypt will not immediately feel the pinch of Western disapproval, Cairo might soon find that international ostracism will thwart its economic growth and ultimately play against its national stability.

As the military is conducting a political holocaust against the Muslim Brotherhood, Egyptians and Arabs the world's over are arguing over semantic, not recognizing that just as the military is proving systematic in its attack of the Brotherhood it could turn against anyone it feels poses a threat to its authority.

The fact that former interim Vice President Mohammed ElBaradei is being taken to court over his resignation, charged with "betrayal of trust" while deposed President Mubarak is getting a free out of jail card should be indication enough of the military's mindset.

With more powers now that it ever had, the military will unlikely give up its privileges for the sake of Egypt's democratic aspirations, especially when it could so easily crush such aspirations under the belt of its tanks.

That being said, Persian Gulf countries' paranoia over political Islam could actually tip the region well over the edge as the oppressive hand of the Egyptian military will undoubtedly finds its way around democracy's neck, thus crushing the very dream of Egypt revolutionary Youth.

As Hugh Miles - writer and journalist - put it, "If the coup turns out to be the harbinger of counter-revolution - the crushing of all the hopes engendered in the heady days of February 2011 - the anger on the street may acquire a new focus."

Such a betrayal will come at a price.

If undisputedly and beyond any form of bias one can safely declare that the Muslim Brotherhood is being hunted down to appease Saudi Arabia's irrational fear of political Islam, the Brothers are not without faults.

George Joffe, an expert on North Africa at Cambridge University commented, "They have no understanding whatsoever of the way democratic politics operates. It is difficult to imagine how anyone, given the opportunity of power, could in any circumstances have behaved as stupidly as they did. It is staggering incompetence."

Fawaz Gerges an academic from the London School of Economics concurred, adding, "The Brotherhood have committed political suicide. It will take them decades to recover. Al-Ikhwan is a toxic brand now in Egypt and the region."

He warned that the repercussions of the Brotherhood's debacle will be felt across its pan-Arab network for decades to come.

A broken revolutionary shell, Egypt's hopes for democracy lie now dead at the bottom of the Nile.

Catherine Shakdam is a commentator and political risk consultant. Based in the UK, she worked in collaboration with Yemen Human Rights Minister on shaping new policies to protect women rights. The above article wa published by Press Tv.

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