WP: Egyptian Army Prefers Turkish Model, But Will Not Impose It

WP: Egyptian Army Prefers Turkish Model, But Will Not Impose It

Washington Post, reported that the ruling Military Council started to release signals that they want the army to continue to play key roles, namely to be the guarantor of the secular rule after the handover of power to the new Head of State

The paper – in a report published yesterday – pointed out that “the Council members did not leave room for doubt – either in talks to the media or in public statements –regarding their belief that the Islamist parties pose a threat”.

The paper said: “Although the military leaders pledged to hand over the reins of power immediately after the election of a new president, but they suggest that the Military Council will work in the future as an observer to act in case that the government is not secular enough”.

One of the leaders of the Army, who is an adviser to the Military Council, on condition of anonymity, said: “We want a model similar to that found in Turkey, but we will not impose it. Egypt, as a country, needs to protect democracy from the Islamists, because we know that these people do not think democratically”.

The paper considered the emergence of the Army as a guarantee for the secular state is contrary to the common theory prevailing among the secularists and leftists that the Council of the Armed Forces has allied with the Muslim Brotherhood, which is the group that is well organized and well funded; a group which is expected to achieve great success in the upcoming parliamentary elections.

The newspaper pointed out that the SCAF had difficulty in maintaining its popularity during performing the functions of ruling the country, including the preparation of the budget, laws and legislation and even specifying the date for the stock exchange opening.

The newspaper quoted Shadi Hamid, director of research at the Brookings Center – Doha, saying that “the idea of having the Army carrying out the task of protecting the secular state suggests that we may see repeated clashes between Islamists and the Army in the coming years, and this will not be useful or positive for the stability of Egypt”.

For his part, Osama al-Ghazali Harb, the founder of the Democratic Front Party, said that he and others with him believe that the Islamists represent a greater threat than the military with all its influence, and he expressed his support for constitutional amendments that give the army a “role in ensuring democratic stability in the country”.

Al-Masry Al-Youm – July 19, 2011 – page 3