Immediately on the heels of US and worldwide praise for his role in brokering a cease-fire between Hamas’ jihadist Gaza regime, and Israel, within 24 hours, Egyptian President Muhammad Morsi decreed himself sweeping executive powers.
Morsi aide, Pakinam al-Sharqawi, alluding to the starting date of the 2011 uprising against former Egyptian President Mubarak, opined on Al-Jazeera,
He had to act to save the country and protect the course of the revolution. It is a major stage in the process of completing the January 25th revolution
Effectively neutralizing a judicial system which had become a dogged opponent, Morsi’s decree bars the courts from challenging his decisions. Morsi now not only holds executive power, he also assumed de facto legislative authority after a prior court ruling issued just before he took office on June 30, 2012 dissolved the popularly elected, powerful lower house of parliament, which was spearheaded by the Muslim Brotherhood. Having seized two branches of power, Morsi deftly eliminated many prerogatives of the third, the judiciary.
Placing himself beyond oversight, simultaneously, Morsi secured the traditionalist, Sharia-supporting assembly body drafting Egypt’s new constitution from judicial challenges calling for its dissolution. Dominated by the Muslim Brotherhood and other traditionalist Muslim members, this assembly has striven to produce a Sharia-based draft constitution, which, understandably, “opponents fear would marginalize women and minority Christians, infringe on personal liberties and even give Muslim clerics a say in lawmaking.” During the past week, in protest of what they claimed was the hijacking of the process by Morsi’s Sharia supremacist allies, Christian and secular leaning members withdrew from the assembly.
Finally, in an apparent gesture to public opinion, the decree also provided for “new investigations and trials” against those who held “political or executive” positions in the former Mubarak regime. Specifically, Morsi ordered the retrial of Mubarak and upper echelon aides on charges of killing protesters during the uprising, while creating a new “protection of the revolution” judicial body to carry out the prosecutions with alacrity.
Even as the Muslim Brotherhood’s “Supreme Guide” Muhammad Badi publicly denounced his role in brokering a cease-fire between Hamas’ jihadist Gaza regime, and Israel, Morsi appears to be fulfilling their, and his own long shared desire to re-create a Sharia supremacist Egyptian state.
During a presidential campaign speech broadcast May 13, 2012, on the Egyptian television station Misr 25, Morsi revealed, unabashedly, his traditionalist Islamic Weltanschauung. Extolling the sharia supremacist ideology championed by Muslim Brotherhood founder, Hasan al-Banna, whom Morsi invoked, he proclaimed,
[in the 1920s, the Egyptians] said: “The constitution is our Koran.” They wanted to show that the constitution is a great thing. But Imam [Hassan] Al-Banna, Allah’s mercy upon him, said to them: “No, the Koran is our constitution.” The Koran was and will continue to be our constitution. The Koran will continue to be our constitution.
His adoring crowd then segued immediately into a responsive exercise with Morsi, each repeating the individual statements that comprise the Muslim Brotherhood credo:
Crowds: The Koran is our constitution.
Mohamed Morsi: The Prophet Muhammad is our leader.
Crowds: The Prophet Muhammad is our leader.
Mohamed Morsi: Jihad is our path.
Crowds: Jihad is our path.
Mohamed Morsi: And death for the sake of Allah is our most lofty aspiration.
Crowds: And death for the sake of Allah is our most lofty aspiration.
Mohamed Morsi: Above all—Allah is our goal.
Morsi concluded this part of his speech by making clear that he would work aggressively to implement the sharia, as president:
The shari’a, then the shari’a, and finally, the shari’a. This nation will enjoy blessing and revival only through the Islamic shari’a. I take an oath before Allah and before you all that regardless of the actual text [of the constitution]. . . . Allah willing, the text will truly reflect [the shari’a], as will be agreed upon by the Egyptian people, by the Islamic scholars, and by legal and constitutional experts. . . . Rejoice and rest assured that this people will not accept a text that does not reflect the true meaning of the Islamic shari’a as a text to be implemented and as a platform. The people will not agree to anything else.
Pace the US State Department’s predictably feeble response to Morsi’s dictatorial actions—quoth a senior State Department official, “We are seeking more information about President Morsi’s decisions and declarations today, which have raised concerns”—the Obama administration’s reckless policies, which undermined the secular-leaning, pro-Western autocrat Mubarak, appear to have midwived a Muslim Brotherhood-dominated, Islamic totalitarian Egyptian state.
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