Egypt’s ‘Liberal’ Pro-Coup Factions Want Islamists Banned from Politics

Islamist Parties Dominated Recent Elections

Still hoping to turn this month’s military coup to political advantage, several of the so-called “liberal” parties that have endorsed the coup are pushing for the military to permanently ban all Islamist parties from elections in the new, junta-penned constitution.

It’s not just ideological differences. Rather, the recent elections have shown Egyptian voters overwhelmingly support the Islamist parties, with the Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) sweeping the elections and the Salafist al-Nour Party showing a strong second. If you can’t beat them, ban them.

But that doesn’t solve all the problems of these blocs, which showed minimal voter interest last time around and seem to have little credibility left as democratic reformers after their loud support for coups and crackdowns.

The real winners, if and when Egypt gets around to a new round of “elections” with all the popular parties banned, will be the military. They already have de facto control over the “interim” government, and Gen. El-Sisi, having carried out a protracted coup scheme in all-but-plain sight, has both the strong US ties and control of the military, seems ready to go from a behind-the-scenes dictator to the overt, Mubarak kind with little resistance.

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Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.