Monthly Archives: February 2015

Daily Egypt and Tunisia links 02/06/2015

  • tags: Egypt Tunisia military judiciary institutions analysis

    • The real answer to Egypt and Tunisia’s divergent trajectories may therefore lie in the responses of each country’s state institutions to the calls to thwart the democratic transition. In Egypt, the military and judiciary heeded and even welcomed these calls. The opposition in Egypt was able to appeal to the judiciary to dissolve the democratically elected parliament and to the military to oust the democratically elected president. In Tunisia, by contrast, the judiciary was unable and the military unwilling to perform these functions. Without state institutions to partner with, the Tunisian opposition ultimately had no choice but to come to the negotiating table with Ennahda, facilitating consensus.
    • The Brotherhood’s biggest mistake, however, may have been to encroach on the military’s historic monopoly over national security decisions. The National Defense Council, composed overwhelmingly of military figures under the SCAF, became majority-civilian under Morsi (and tellingly reverted back to majority-military in the 2014 Constitution). In December 2012, the Brotherhood raised more red flags by allegedly backing a Qatari-Palestinian scheme to buy land in the Sinai. The military balked, claiming that “Sinai is a red line” and Sisi took the unprecedented step of issuing a decree (typically the president’s prerogative) limiting the sale of this land.Wael Haddara, an advisor to Morsi, told me about another incident in December 2012 when he and two other Morsi administration officials were sent to Washington to meet with the Department of Defense. Intentionally or not, the Egyptian embassy in D.C. failed to inform the defense attache of their meeting, contributing to fears that Morsi was sidelining the military.
    • The Tunisian “success story,” then, is not that all sides wanted democracy, but rather that all sides had no choice but to settle for democracy.

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

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