"The Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF), who have removed Morsi, have been in control of Egypt for decades behind a number of different regimes, including Morsi. The millions who forced the removal of Morsi as they did Mubarak are not the fools that the Guardian's Jonathan Steele considers them to be. Many are already determined that the SCAF must be fought and the SCAF, for its part, is only too aware that they are in no position to carry out an Egyptian version of the Tienanmen massacre."

The Egyptian revolution, the options of the SCAF and the hope of Palestine
Mick Napier 4 July 2013

Man is the measure of all things. (Protagoras)

Syrian dictator Assad and the brutal Saudi regime have openly welcomed the move by the Egyptian Army leadership against the Muslim Brotherhood government of Mohamed Morsi. Weasel word aside, the US and the British governments have abandoned Morsi and accepted the Army’s move as inevitable, faced as it was with a determined mass mobilisation unprecedented in Egypt’s history calling for the overthrow of the Morsi government.

The popular mobilisation that forced the military leaders to move against Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood was as wide and profound as any in Millions ousted Morsihuman history, more powerful than the first revolutionary wave that overthrew Mubarak less than two years ago.

The lower depths of Egyptian society, uniting religious and secular, exploded again and ended fears (or hopes) that the Egyptian revolution had cooled with the overthrow of Mubarak and the voting into office of Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood. The social base of the Brotherhood withered as it reneged on every promise Morsi made to get elected.

One example of such betrayal was the Egyptian Government’s maintenance of the brutal Israeli siege of Gaza, including the destruction of the tunnels that are the lifeblood of the struggling Palestinian enclave. Early this year, the Egyptian military demolished dozens of tunnels, and flooded them with toxic waste water – this at the behest of the US and Israel.

The continuity is not open to question. Under the Mubarak dictatorship, the SCAF repeatedly ordered attacks on the Gaza tunnels, a lifeline to the besieged Palestinian people of Gaza. Under the Morsi Muslim Brotherhood government, this policy was maintained. Egyptian Army (SCAF) attacks on the Gaza tunnels continued after Morsi was deposed.

As any student of revolution knows, whether hostile or supportive of revolutionary change, the dizzying speed of changes in the ideas and hopes of millions outstrips the capacity of four-yearly ballots to give even minimal voice to popular demands. The government propelled into office in the early stages of a revolution is discarded as it becomes a barrier to the rising demands of those who were previously outside the world of official politics, busy scraping a living to survive, or sunk in the apathy that follows the belief that the rich and powerful always win out.

The Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF), who have removed Morsi, have been in control of Egypt for decades behind a number of different regimes, including Morsi. The millions who forced the removal of Morsi as they did Mubarak are not the fools that the Guardian’s Jonathan Steele considers them to be. Many are already determined that the SCAF must be fought and the SCAF, for its part, is only too aware that they are in no position to carry out an Egyptian version of the Tienanmen massacre.

The rising mood of popular confidence – “We have forced out two dictatorial governments” – means that any orders to Egyptian soldiers to fire on their compatriots would be a desperate gamble. The first soldiers to refuse to fire on the risen people, and go over to the side of the insurgent population against the SCAF, will open a revolutionary process in the entire Middle East that will challenge US and Israeli control of the region as never before. It is popular determination that breaks the rank and file of an army from the control of its officers in a situation like that developing in Egypt. Egyptians have that in spades.

The millions who confronted Morsi are the hope of the Palestinian people and the entire people of the Middle East and beyond. How ridiculous that this elemental force should be measured by the results of an election a year old, a year that might as well be a century! The regulations for an electoral process designed to minimise change are now in the dustbin, and the stage is set for a revolution to wash away all the corrupt dictatorships that remain across the region, and to end the power of the settler-colonial State of Israel. Israel will inevitably strike at any threat to Western control of the region’s oil, as it did in 1956, 1967 and is currently threatening against Iran.

The Zionist state relies on 6m privileged and heavily armed Jews against 400 million Arabs and has prevailed to date because of the Arab dictatorships that were only able to repress their citizens. Any revolutionary change in the region poses a great danger to Israel, since Arab revolutionaries see occupied Palestine as a western colonial outpost that must be liberated if they are to enjoy any real independence and freedom.

Democracy is not a matter of putting ballot papers in a box every so many years and then watching the elected politicians line their own and their friends pockets, as happens in Egypt, the US and Britain. Democracy is approached to the degree that the mass of people achieve real control and power in society and it is happening before our very eyes in Egypt. The sights are stupendous and the courage and determination are infectious.

There is still everything to play for in Egypt. Those who only see the change of formal, constitutional forms in the drama miss the bigger, beautiful picture – millions of people who are growing in stature, in their own and others’ eyes, and who will confound the plans of Saudis, Assad and western chancelleries to pillage their oil and keep them in the poverty and humiliation they have endured since they were conquered by Europe.

By virtue of their position and history, Palestinians have played a key role in opposing western plans to dominate the region by their resistance to the Zionist State of Israel. Their hope rose with the first surge of Egypt’s current revolutionary wave; it should rise further, in inverse proportion to Israel’s alarm at the second tsunami.

There are some reports that Netanyahu and others have welcomed Morsi's overthrow, but other and Israeli voices express concerns.  Haaretz' Anshel Pfeffer notes how Morsi's government acted in ways that benefitted Israel to the detriment of the Palestinians. Among the "...reasons why Israel could end up missing Morsi" :
1. "Under Morsi, the Muslim Brotherhood did the unthinkable when it affirmed the Camp David peace accords with Israel...on the most crucial level for Israel - the security channels - cooperation was maintained and even improved, Israeli defense sources said..."
2. "[T]heMorsi administration actually did not try to stop Israel from launching Operation Pillar of Defense in Gaza last year, in which Hamas' military leadership and infrastructure was severely damaged...The Muslim Brotherhood has reined in Hamas in a degree that never existed during Mubarak's time."
3. "...under Morsi's rule, the army...has demolished large numbers of smuggling tunnels."

Mick Napier
4 July 2013

See also
Hani Shukrallah Egypt's second revolution: Questions of legitimacy  in Al Ahram Thur 4 July 2013
Khalid Shaalan Why the Western Media are Getting Egypt Wrong in Jadaliyya (accessed 5 July 2013)

Chomsky teaches Paxman a thing or two:

Watch video

Chomsky

In 1963, the CIA-backed coup that deposed the populist, left-leaning government of Brigadier General Abdul Karim Qassim, and eventually brought Saddam's Baath party to power, seems like it just happened yesterday. During the bloody hijack, lists of progressive activists were provided to Baathist henchmen by the US to be murdered in campuses and other public spaces. One of the men toting a gun, terrorizing the University of Baghdad, was none other than the esteemed Dr. Ayad Allawi himself, one of the main contestants in the recent Iraqi elections. He is the leader of the Iraqi National Movement (al-Iraqiya), the political party which won the greatest number of seats.
 

 

"It has been almost a million months since Iraqis ran to the polls, to fill holes in their souls with bloodstained ballots. Hundreds of candidates dressed up as maggots colored the liberal lining in occupied skies, and perpetuated the lies that there is democracy. Hypocrisy of the highest order, politicians blaming their failure on porous borders, while blindly following American orders on everything from defense to education. The death of a nation, systematic assassination and relentless dehumanization of millions of people. The burning of mosques, schools, hospitals and steeples for crumbs of rotten bread. Iraq is dead, shot in the heart and stabbed in the head." -- Excerpt from a new spoken word piece entitled, "Unfinished Letters from Iraq."

Prior to the parliamentary elections in Iraq on 7 March of this year, all the major political factions running in the country's nationwide elections declared the entire affair to be corrupt and not representative of the people's will. They were preemptively cooking an excuse for any unwanted results that might emerge out of the charade. Independent reports corroborated their suggestions with testimonies of fake registration forms and leaky ballot boxes. However, the elections went through, and the results were applauded by other fake democracies around the world. Since then a constipated coalition-building process has left Iraq with no government for more than eight months.

In spite of the satirical sadness of it all, the liberal media, and Iraq's desperate population, continue to hold on to the electoral proceedings with religious fervor. From outside Iraq, those who politically organized the occupation see the elections as justification for their complicity in mass murder. Meanwhile those inside the country try to cope with the immense loss of life by pinning their misguided hopes on the empty promises of one politician or the other.

The inaccuracy of the results and the subsequent drama only tell part of the story. An elections process cleverly diverts all attention from the colossal incompetency of the government, and spins the tall tale of a young, fledgling born-again country instead. The reality is that democracy in Iraq does not exist beyond the show business of sham elections.

In the absence of food, electricity, water, education, health, safety and dignity, the vote exists merely as a tool to stretch the life expectancy of the occupation and ironically works to quell any grassroots movements that would build genuine democratic institutions in the country. Students, workers, community organizations, women, single mothers, the disabled, orphans, the poor and all other marginalized sectors of society continue to watch democracy from a painful distance while bearing the brunt of its epic failures.

Historically, the emergence of a sovereign, self-sustained, secular, progressive, economically powerful country in the region was a worrisome possibility for an oil-hungry United States, obsessed with growing Soviet expansionism in the post-Second World War era. As such, the last forty years have witnessed a program of pillaging and exploitation that has eaten its way through some of the most fertile land in the world.

Under Saddam Hussein's Baath party, civil society in Iraq was destroyed, personal freedoms exterminated and the majority of the country's resources were wasted on a paranoid dictatorship and an American proxy war with Iran. Under the sanctions, Iraq's infrastructure was annihilated, millions of people were killed and theft and corruption took a stronghold in the mismanagement of the country's affairs. Since the occupation, millions more have had their lives destroyed, the greatest systematic extortion of a country's resources successfully executed and the language of sectarianism has choked the aspirations of many generations to come. Throughout this time, America also unleashed the most violent warfare in the history of mankind.

The elections are just another part of this death sentence issued to Iraq.

In 1963, the CIA-backed coup that deposed the populist, left-leaning government of Brigadier General Abdul Karim Qassim, and eventually brought Saddam's Baath party to power, seems like it just happened yesterday. During the bloody hijack, lists of progressive activists were provided to Baathist henchmen by the US to be murdered in campuses and other public spaces. One of the men toting a gun, terrorizing the University of Baghdad, was none other than the esteemed Dr. Ayad Allawi himself, one of the main contestants in the recent Iraqi elections. He is the leader of the Iraqi National Movement (al-Iraqiya), the political party which won the greatest number of seats.
 

Read full article in Electronic Intifada 18 November 2010  http://electronicintifada.net/v2/article11635.shtml 

Elias Murr advised U.S. diplomats on how Israel could 'clean out' Hezbollah from southern Lebanon
by Haaretz

Lebanon's Defense Minister offered advice on how Israel could defeat Hezbollah if a new war erupted on Israel's northern border, a classified U.S. diplomatic cable shows...

In the run-up to an invasion, the Israel Defense Forces should also take care not to enter a United Nations-controlled buffer zone along the border, Murr said. He said Hezbollah would use any Israeli violation of UN Security Council 1701, which brought an end to the 2006 war, to "flood" the area with fighters and weapons.

...Murr said that if war broke out, his main concern would be to keep the Lebanese Army out of the fighting.

Israeli tank in Lebanon 2006"Murr was especially concerned for members of the 1st and 8th Brigades in the Beka'a valley. Murr thinks that these units will be cut off from HQ support while Israel is conducting operations against Hezbollah," the diplomat reported.

"They will have to turn to the local populace for food, water etc. Since the populace is mainly Hizballah supporters, Murr is afraid that these two units could be dragged into the fight, the ultimate disaster Murr hopes to avoid."

...The defense minister also said he had told the army's commander at the time, Michel Sleiman – currently Lebanon's president – to keep out of the fighting "when Israel comes".

For Murr, the army's strategic objective was to survive a three week war "completely intact" and able to take over once Hizballah's militia has been destroyed, the report said.

Full article in Haaretz 03 December 2010

 

"First, the Hezbollah victory has shown that Israel - and any modern and technologically sophisticated Western military force - can be defeated in open battle, if the proper military tactics are employed and if they are sustained over a prolonged period. Hezbollah has provided the model for the defeat of a modern army...

"Second, the Hezbollah victory has shown the people of the Muslim world that the strategy employed by Western-allied Arab and Muslim governments - a policy of appeasing US interests in the hopes of gaining substantive political rewards...[e.g.] a recognition of Palestinian rights...cannot and will not work. The Hezbollah victory provides another and different model, of shattering US hegemony and destroying its stature in the region. Of the two most recent events in the Middle East, the invasion of Iraq and the Hezbollah victory over Israel, the latter is by far the most important...

Third, the Hezbollah victory has had a shattering impact on America's allies in the region...support for Hezbollah across the Arab world (including, strangely, portraits of Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah carried in the midst of Christian celebrations) has put those Arab rulers closest to the United States on notice: a further erosion in their status could loosen their hold on their own nations.
Whole article (Part 3) in Asian Times

Alastair Crooke and Mark Perry are the co-directors of Conflicts Forum, a London-based group dedicated to providing an opening to political Islam. Crooke is the former Middle East adviser to European Union High Representative Javier Solana and served as a staff member of the Mitchell Commission investigating the causes of the second intifada. Perry is a Washington, DC-based political consultant, author of six books on US history, and a former personal adviser to the late Yasser Arafat.