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Wednesday, 16 October 2019

The mockery of the Morsi saga

The death of ousted president Mohamed Morsi while he was standing trial has been seized upon by the enemies of Egypt and the Egyptian nation

Hany Ghoraba , Thursday 27 Jun 2019
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Of all the fake and even comical titles that the terrorist Muslim Brotherhood group has used for itself, the designation of ousted president Mohamed Morsi as a “prophet” who was “assassinated” must be the most absurd.

This designation was given by many Muslim Brotherhood activists, including the Yemeni Nobel Laureate Tawakol Kerman, who went so far as to use this designation to describe Morsi. 

The very notion of calling another human being a prophet after the death of the Prophet Mohamed is blasphemous in the Islamic faith, let alone its use by a group that despite its claims does not represent Islam.

However, this did not stop Muslim Brotherhood leaders and activists using all sorts of exalted names to describe Morsi including “martyr”, “prophet”, “warrior” and others.

Yet, the fact remains that Morsi was elected president as a result of controversial elections that ended with two weeks of vote recounting and delays before he was declared president amidst reports of rigging and the use of force to prevent Coptic voters in Upper Egypt from exercising their right to vote.

It did not take Morsi more than a few months to annul the Egyptian constitution which he had been sworn to protect. Instead, in November 2012 he issued his infamous “Constitutional Declaration” that gave him all the power in the land to perform what he called “necessary changes”. 

At that moment, Morsi lost his legitimacy as a president, and his continued presence in the presidency was unconstitutional. To put this in perspective, what would be the reaction if the US or French presidents pulled the same stunt months after their election? It would be deemed unconstitutional and would warrant their impeachment. 

The uprising that followed Morsi’s Declaration, initially quelled violently by his supporters, continued months later. It came in parallel to the circulation of the largest petition in Egypt’s history, garnering over 22 million signatures in a matter of months demanding early elections and paving the way for the 30 June Revolution. 

Months after being ousted following the revolution, investigations found that Morsi had passed national security and top-secret Armed Forces information to Hamas, Qatar and Iran. He was tried for this in court, and he also faced other charges.

During Morsi’s one-year rule, millions of weapons found their way inside the country and eventually reached the jihadist groups in North Sinai.

Most of these weapons were smuggled across the Libyan border and through tunnels with Gaza along with shipments from Turkey. 

Morsi’s recent death while he was standing trial was not a surprise given his poor medical history. Before Morsi became president, he had suffered from a stroke and had undergone various forms of surgery.

This had been accompanied by diabetes and a range of other illnesses that would have deemed him unfit to run for president in any Western democracy. 

As expected, the Muslim Brotherhood and its allies worldwide have now tried to turn Morsi’s death from a heart attack during his trial into an assassination. They have attempted to propagate the idea that he was poisoned or was not given appropriate care.

Foolish voices in the Western media and Islamist and Muslim Brotherhood sympathisers have propagated this hogwash without a shred of evidence.

The mourning for his death has mostly been through Islamist and jihadist websites, which have gone on a frenzy to exaggerate his death and place a bigger meaning on it.

This Islamist “rat pack” consisting of Turkish ruler Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Qatari emir and terrorism financier Tamim bin Hamad, and an assortment of global misfits that includes US Congresswoman Ilhan Omar whose allegiance to the Islamists and radical groups becomes apparent more and more every day, has been howling over Morsi’s death as if it were the end of days. 

Erdogan, with his traditional overreach, has threatened that he will “seek justice” for Morsi by taking the Egyptian government to the international courts.

Ironically, this threat comes from a tyrant who has committed atrocities in Turkey and neighbouring countries that would require volumes to document and has sent scores of Turkish dissidents to languish behind bars while seizing their assets. 

Morsi is not the first and he will not be the last president to die in custody or during trial. He has been preceded by many, including former Yugoslav president Slobodan Milosevic, former Argentinean president Jorge Rafael Videla, and former Bolivian president Luis Garcia Meza, to name a few.

For nine decades, the Muslim Brotherhood has represented a fifth column in the heart of the Egyptian nation. It has been one that has infested a large sector of society despite its small numbers when compared to the rest of the population.

However, the Brotherhood has had bigger dreams than Egypt, including the creation of a “caliphate” that would rule Egypt and the region for 500 years. Ironically, the dream lasted no more than the year of Morsi’s rule before it was ended.

 The Nazis in Germany had a similar dream in the 1930s of a “thousand-year reich” that in fact ended after a decade. Luckily the Egyptian version has ended with far less devastation and loss of life compared to the German one, though one can only imagine the casualties that would have been seen had Morsi and his acolytes been allowed to continue ruling Egypt. 

The true Egyptian martyrs are those innocent civilians who have lost their lives during the most ferocious wave of terrorism that has swept the country since 2012.

They include the honourable men from the Egyptian army and police who have paid with their lives to defend their fellow Egyptians and protect the borders of their country against the Brotherhood and its affiliates, groups such as Ansar Beit Al-Maqdis, Hasm, and Liwaa Al-Thawra, all of which are ill-intentioned. 

These heroes whose families will have to endure their loss are the real martyrs and not the terrorists who were responsible for their deaths. Morsi’s death in court was very peaceful in comparison to the horrific deaths he and his allies dealt out to these heroes and martyrs.

Morsi will be remembered as a footnote in Egypt’s great history and a president who desecrated the seat of the presidency. His divisive, sectarian, and autocratic rule has caused Egypt thousands of deaths, economic losses, and terrorism.

He will be remembered for almost igniting the first civil war in Egyptian history since the Alexandrian Civil War in 54 BC between Cleopatra and Ptolemy XIII, something which will not land Morsi a favourable place in the history books.

Morsi was the perfect manifestation of the 16th-century Italian political theorist Machiavelli’s saying that “it is not titles that honour men but men that honour titles.” Morsi failed miserably to honour the title he was granted.

*The writer is a political analyst and author of Egypt’s Arab Spring and the Winding Road to Democracy.

*A version of this article appears in print in the 27 June, 2019 edition of Al-Ahram Weekly under the headline: The mockery of the Morsi saga

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