Amr Hamzawy on the MB Shadow Government

From Arabist, translating an article by political commentator and liberal politician Amr Hamzawy:

The bifurcation of Egypt’s government into an official and unofficial administration – as has been noted before – is at the root of a serious crisis that is blighting the chances for democratic transition and the rule of law. One half of this dual administration is made up of the president, his team of advisors and his government as the executive wing on one hand and the Freedom and Justice Party as the legislative wing on the other. Meanwhile, the other half of this administration is composed of the Muslim Brotherhood and the shadowy figures that they have placed in influential political and executive positions that involve direct, decision-making authority. This dual administration now holds sway over the Egyptian state, its institutions and agencies, while giving birth to disastrous mix-ups and derailing plans to reform the state, to implement transparency and freedom of information, and to ensure accountability and equal opportunity.

If this has been noted before, it is often overlooked as part of the current reality of Egyptian politics. But not just in government is it noted that Western governments engage the wrong actor, but within the MB structures as well:

They give support to the idea of fixing the relationship between religion and politics, then they elevate the Muslim Brotherhood over the Freedom and Justice Party — that was founded as the Brotherhood’s political wing — through their ongoing communication with decision-makers in the Brotherhood concerning Shura Council legislation, economic and social issues, matters related to aid, etc. This is despite the fact that all these issues fall within the Freedom and Justice Party’s purview, not to mention that of the official administration consisting of President Mohamed Morsi, his team and his government.

I have had several non-political Egyptian liberals tell me they do not want to see President Morsi fail, but to fulfill his mandate and then be voted out of office. They say as well they do not oppose political Islam as a concept, but wish to see them active through the registered Freedom and Justice Party, rather than through the nebulous Muslim Brotherhood.

Basically, they want politics up front, legal, and transparent. Hamzawy is convinced it is not happening, and in fact, the West is abetting the very opposite.

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