The Egyptian army’s massacre of more than a thousand protesters over the past week was an unprecedented and despicable incident which has sent the country into a dark tunnel, according to many political analysts. The slaughter has widened the chasm between the people and the ruling junta and dimmed the prospects for a peaceful settlement of the crisis.
The Egyptian military has used all its might to suppress people who were protesting in a completely peaceful manner in various cities. The demonstrators were only calling for the reinstatement of deposed president Mohammed Morsi and did not resort to violence. However, the army implemented a pre-orchestrated scenario and responded with an iron fist instead of respecting democracy.
The appointment of an interim government after Morsi was removed from power was the military’s biggest mistake. If the ouster of Morsi was necessary because millions of Egyptians are really opposed to him, as the army claims, the best path to take after the coup would have been to organize inclusive national talks between all the various groups and to allow them to select another government. However, the army picked the costliest option and started to suppress the followers of the Muslim Brotherhood, which is undoubtedly the most popular political party in the country and the entire Arab world.
The reactionary Arab monarchs in the region, acting in line with the United States and Israel, are providing a massive amount of financial support to the elements that carried out the coup. This proves that the army generals were not the only ones responsible for creating a bloodbath on the streets of Egypt. And thus the massacre of innocent Egyptians should be viewed as part of a coordinated effort by the global hegemons and their regional proxies.
The future of Egypt is uncertain, and the prospects for establishing a peaceful and democratic state are becoming dimmer. Indeed, no one really knows what will happen to the most populous Arab country, where Islamic culture and civilization have thrived for many centuries.
But sooner or later, the army will realize that the crackdown has accomplished nothing and that it should stop tarnishing its reputation. Afterwards, it will be the duty of Egypt’s political and religious elite to find a solution to the crisis.
Jafar Qannadbashi is an expert in African politics based in Tehran.
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