Military arrests 650 Morsi backers after shootings

posted at 2:01 pm on July 9, 2013 by Ed Morrissey

National reconciliation took a back seat to message-sending in Egypt today on both sides of the political chasm that opened last week.  The military government announced that they had arrested 650 pro-Morsi supporters after a deadly confrontation two days ago that resulted in more than 50 deaths and 300 wounded.  Among the detained, one official said, were Syrian and Palestinian nationals:

An Egyptian security official says 650 people, mostly backers of ousted President Mohammed Morsi, have been detained for allegedly trying to storm a military facility, an incident the military claims sparked violence that left more than 50 pro-Morsi protesters dead.

The detainees were largely pro-Morsi protesters seized during clashes early Monday outside the Republican Guard headquarters. Protesters and Morsi’s Muslim Brotherhood deny any attack took place on the headquarters, saying troops opened fire on their sit-in nearby as the protesters finished dawn prayers.

The security official said Syrian and Palestinian nationals were among those arrested. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to talk to the press.

We’ll get back to the potential import of the nationalities involved in the melee.  For their part, the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt has rejected the plan put forward by the military government for a new constitutional referendum and national elections:

Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood on Tuesday rejected a new timetable announced by the military-backed interim leadership that sets a fast track for amending the Islamist-drafted constitution and holding new parliamentary and presidential elections by early next year.

The quick issuing of the transition plan showed how Egypt’s new leadership is shrugging off Islamists’ vows to reverse the military’s ousting of President Mohammed Morsi and wants to quickly entrench a post-Morsi political system. …

Essam el-Erian, a senior Brotherhood figure and deputy head of its Freedom and Justice Party, rejected the transition timetable, saying it takes the country “back to zero.”

“The cowards are not sleeping, but Egypt will not surrender. The people created their constitution with their votes,” he wrote on his Facebook page, referring to the constitution that Islamists pushed to finalization and then was passed in a national referendum during Morsi’s year in office.

He said the military and its allies were targeting “not just the president but the nation’s identity, the rights and freedoms of the people and the democratic system enshrined in the constitution.”

That would be a good argument, except for the facts surrounding the enshrining of the suspended constitution.  The MB stacked the constitutional panel with Islamists, pushing out any sense of balance.  When courts attempted to intervene to make sure that the results would be pluralistic, Morsi assumed dictatorial powers to prevent their interference.  That move, above all others, is what legitimized the massive demonstrations and the military coup, which was prompted more by the dire economic conditions in Egypt under Morsi’s rule.

What of the nationalities involved in the pro-Morsi demonstration?  It’s no secret that Islamists in the region are dismayed by the fall of Morsi, including the rebels in Syria that want Islamist rule to replace the dictatorship of Bashar al-Assad.  Palestinians, especially Hamas in Gaza, see it as an even bigger nightmare, reports McClatchy:

For the Islamist Hamas rulers controlling the Gaza Strip, the ouster of Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi and his Muslim Brotherhood movement is a “nightmare” situation.

Hamas, which began as the Palestinian offshoot of the Muslim Brotherhood, celebrated Morsi’s election to office last year, becoming a key Islamist ally and supporter in the Arab world.

“What happened in Egypt is a nightmare for Hamas which it did not expect,” Mukhaimer Abu Saada, a political science professor at Al-Azhar University in Gaza, said in an email to reporters. …

When Morsi emerged as the victor of Egypt’s first free elections in 30 years, many in Gaza celebrated what they thought would be renewed ties with Egypt and the rest of the Arab world.

“We believed that this would mean a complete renaissance for Gaza, a complete opening of the Rafah border between Egypt and Gaza, trade deals, no travel restrictions. We imagined that we would finally be connected to the rest of the region,” said one Hamas legislator, who asked to speak anonymously because Hamas has refused to comment on the ongoing turmoil in Egypt. “Instead, there were only small changes. Now there is this, and the mood in Gaza is very dark. We feel we are stranded.”

For Egyptians, the focus on Palestinians in Gaza was a sore point with the Morsi regime, thanks to the starvation and economic disaster presently unfolding in Egypt.  Under normal circumstances, Egyptians would be sympathetic to Gaza and the Palestinians, but not at their own expense in the crisis:

“They send things to Gaza which we do not have in Egypt. We want to get rid of Morsi and get a new leader who puts Egypt first,” said Ala Mafrouk, a 23-year-old student who took part in the protests in Cairo’s Tahrir Square.

It’s not too surprising to see Palestinians and Syrians promoting Islamist rule in Egypt, but that’s not going to help the Muslim Brotherhood rescue itself from the current political crisis it created for itself, either.


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Yeah, I say let Allah sort it out….

What a miserable lot of humanity.

redguy on July 9, 2013 at 2:05 PM

An Egyptian security official says 650 people, mostly backers of ousted President Mohammed Morsi, have been detained for allegedly trying to storm a military facility

Thats a battalion-sized force, folks.

BobMbx on July 9, 2013 at 2:07 PM

Start tossing them off of tall buildings.

Eye for an eye, splat for a splat.

BobMbx on July 9, 2013 at 2:08 PM

Cry me a river buddy…

Now there is this, and the mood in Gaza is very dark. We feel we are stranded.

geojed on July 9, 2013 at 2:10 PM

Heckuva job done by Hillary! Just imagine how much of hash she could make out of this country by being president.

rbj on July 9, 2013 at 2:12 PM

Hamas continues to show off it’s wonderful political instincts; the BEST way by FAR to get on the good side of a new Egyptian government, whose good will and help is absolutely critical to your survival, is to make sure that some of your people are there in Egypt demonstrating against them and taking potshots at them from the rooftops.

Good plan, right???

Tom Servo on July 9, 2013 at 2:14 PM

Like trying to herd a room full of cats, that`s the the Middle East is now. Hopefully it`ll keep the crazies busy and leave us alone.

ThePrez on July 9, 2013 at 2:18 PM

Military arrests 650 Morsi backers after shootings

I assume they are under arrest because they survived the shootings?

JFKY on July 9, 2013 at 2:30 PM

The Pharaoh is dead.

Long live the Pharaoh.

Until we get tired of him.

Off with his head!

Steve Z on July 9, 2013 at 2:31 PM

Ah…remember the good ole days when the Muslim Brotherhood assured America that they didn’t have any political ambitions and had no designs on the Egyptian Presidency? And How Obama sold them as moderate, good people?

OxyCon on July 9, 2013 at 2:34 PM

Military arrests 650 Morsi backers after shootings

I assume they are under arrest because they survived the shootings?

JFKY on July 9, 2013 at 2:30 PM

The shootings will continue until morale improves.

Fenris on July 9, 2013 at 2:35 PM

Heck, I remember when James Clapper assured us the MB was just a secular group with no real political aspirations. So much has transpired between then and now, hasn’t it?

a capella on July 9, 2013 at 2:43 PM

OxyCon on July 9, 2013 at 2:34 PM

Didn’t mean to step on your post. Sorry.

a capella on July 9, 2013 at 2:44 PM

Now there is this, and the mood in Gaza is very dark. We (the allies of the MoFoBros) feel we are stranded.

Oh, boo-hoo! Why should anyone feel for you when you are airing this kind of vile crap aimed at young children on television?

The following is the transcript of the poem recited by the little girls on the PA TV program Palestine This Morning:

PA TV reporter: “Let’s meet these girls who want to recite a short poem.”

Girl 1: “I do not fear the rifle because your throngs are in delusion and ignorant herds.

Jerusalem is my land, Jerusalem is my honor

Jerusalem is my days and my wildest dreams.

Oh, you who murdered Allah’s pious prophets (i.e., Jews in Islamic tradition)

Oh, you who were brought up on spilling blood

You have been condemned to humiliation and hardship.

Oh Sons of Zion, oh most evil among creations

Oh barbaric monkeys, wretched pigs

Girl 2: Jerusalem is not your den Jerusalem opposes your throngs

Jerusalem vomits from within it your impurity

Because Jerusalem, you impure ones, is pious, immaculate

And Jerusalem, you who are filth, is clean and pure.

I do not fear barbarity.

As long as my heart is my Quran and my city

As long as I have my arm and my stones

As long as I am free and do not barter my cause

I will not fear your throngs

I will not fear the rifle.”

I haven’t forgotten your butchery…

Another Year, Another Anniversary. 11 13 Years Without Vadim and Yossef. Tears Still Fall.

Resist We Much on July 9, 2013 at 2:48 PM

Heck, I remember when James Clapper assured us the MB was just a secular group with no real political aspirations. So much has transpired between then and now, hasn’t it?

a capella on July 9, 2013 at 2:43 PM

A minor lie compared to the lies the rat-bastard traitor has told since.

Happy Nomad on July 9, 2013 at 2:50 PM

Heck, I remember when James Clapper assured us the MB was just a secular group with no real political aspirations. So much has transpired between then and now, hasn’t it?

a capella on July 9, 2013 at 2:43 PM

Good times, good times.

I can’t believe that the MB has gone so wrong so quickly…
/s

bofh on July 9, 2013 at 3:03 PM

Start tossing them off of tall buildings.

Eye for an eye, splat for a splat.

BobMbx on July 9, 2013 at 2:08 PM

I wonder what they actually will do with them.

dogsoldier on July 9, 2013 at 3:40 PM

Annihilate every last one of the islamist nut bags…decapitate them..shoot them…put them back into the caves. It won’t get back to normal or any better if thr military allows them the room to maneuver.

Twana on July 9, 2013 at 9:40 PM