Egypt’s government orders arrest of Muslim Brotherhood leadership after deadly violence

posted at 8:41 am on July 10, 2013 by Ed Morrissey

The interim government doubled down on its allegations that the deadly confrontation two days ago in front of a Republican Guard headquarters was instigated by the Muslim Brotherhood.  The top prosecutor in the military-supported government ordered the arrest of the party’s top leadership for charges of inciting violence, in a move that will guarantee to inflame passions in Cairo:

Egypt’s top prosecutor ordered the arrest Wednesday of the Muslim’s Brotherhood’s leader, Mohamed Badie, and nine others suspected of inciting violence in Monday’s clashes with the military that left more than 40 dead. Most of those killed were supporters of deposed President Mohammed Morsi.

At a government briefing in Cairo following the arrest order, a foreign ministry spokesman said Brotherhood leaders are inciting violence against citizens and institutions, reports CBS News’ Alex Ortiz.

The spokesman insisted that no political parties will be excluded from the post-military takeover roadmap going forward, but added there is no place for those who incite violence against the state.

Regardless of whether the evidence justifies this arrest order, the offer to be included in the post-military political scene sounds rather hollow while the party’s top leadership gets arrested and taken to jail.  It’s certainly not going to convince the Muslim Brotherhood’s rank and file to feel jolly about the opportunity to take part in post-coup Egyptian politics, and it’s the rank and file that will be going out into the street to either block these arrest orders or protest them after the fact.  If the new government wanted to avoid a civil war, they’re not demonstrating it with any appreciable restraint at the moment.

The Muslim Brotherhood also rejected an earlier offer to join the interim Cabinet in unspecified ministries:

A Brotherhood spokesman said the group will not take part in an interim Cabinet, and that talk of national reconciliation under the current circumstances is “irrelevant.” He spoke on condition of anonymity because of concerns for his security. …

Still, its rejection underscored how polarized the nation’s politics have become, and laid bare the monumental task the interim leadership faces in trying stabilize the country. The nascent government will soon face demands that it tackle economic woes that mounted under Morsi, including fuel shortages, electricity cutoffs and inflation.

Attempting to address those issues will be made all the more difficult if the government ends up in a civil war with the Muslim Brotherhood, too.  Passive non-cooperation might be a drag on progress, but a shooting war or a massive demonstration of obstructionism would be worse.  At some point, the new government has to be looking for ways to defuse the situation rather than throwing gasoline on the fire.

The US could have been in position to offer its services as a mediator. Thanks to two years of fecklessness on policy in Egypt, though, the Obama administration finds itself in the odd position of being equally distrusted and disliked by both sides in the conflict, according to the Washington Post:

There is little that the angry supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood have in common with the secular, liberal revelers in Tahrir Square these days — except for one thing.

They both believe the U.S. government is conspiring against them.

After a year of outreach to the Muslim Brotherhood following the election of its candidate, Mohamed Morsi, as president, the United States is widely perceived here as siding with Islamists it once eyed with distrust.

At the same time, the Obama administration’s cautious refusal to condemn Morsi’s ouster last week quickly spent the goodwill it had built with the Brotherhood — without buying any trust from the other side.

Instead, the liberal forces who drove the revolution to topple Morsi view the United States with even more wariness.

“We love the American people,” said Bolis Victor, 34, a middle-class merchant in the Egyptian capital, who said he has relatives in Chicago. “But we hate Obama and Patterson.”

That would be U.S. Ambassador to Egypt Anne W. Patterson, a career diplomat who assumed the top post in Cairo in 2011.

Ah, yes …. smart power.  The only leverage we have now is the aid to the military, which we can’t afford to suspend for very long without losing all leverage, and which is intended not for good governance but just to keep the peace with Israel.  We pushed Egypt into fast elections which served only the Muslim Brotherhood and its Islamist ambitions, and now we’re backing the strategy that should have been deployed in 2011 — a slow walk to a pluralistic constitution, followed by national elections, but this time after a coup rather than an anti-coup.


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I believe the military. A Muslim Brotherhood-allied cleric already publicly called for Egyptians to resist and fight back against the military govt however they can. Seemed to me to be endorsing even terrorism.

bluegill on July 10, 2013 at 8:44 AM

Looks like they want to provoke the response, then crush it.

SunSword on July 10, 2013 at 8:47 AM

Plus, now neither side trusts US government.

Welcome to the club…

Electrongod on July 10, 2013 at 8:50 AM

Obama will not be happy when he gets up around 10AM and reads this news in the papers.

Liam on July 10, 2013 at 8:50 AM

There is no coup..

Jay Carney said so…

Electrongod on July 10, 2013 at 8:51 AM

Note to Egyptian freedom lovers…….DON’T MESS WITH THE DOTUS.

He’s (well, he and President Valerie Jarrrett) got one thing on his mind for the Middle East..

..Caliphate baby.

PappyD61 on July 10, 2013 at 8:54 AM

Ahh yes – the Middle East – that sanctuary of peace and prosperity.

jake-the-goose on July 10, 2013 at 9:00 AM

“We love the American people,” said Bolis Victor, 34, a middle-class merchant in the Egyptian capital, who said he has relatives in Chicago. “But we hate Obama and Patterson.”

Gee…
He built it…
He kept it…
And he can identify the ones that are a threat to it..
And has the cajones to say it..

Electrongod on July 10, 2013 at 9:01 AM

Watching another nation that embraces Islam sinking into a hell hole. Pass the popcorn, please.

Deano1952 on July 10, 2013 at 9:01 AM

That Obama fellow sure was SMART to insist that Mubarak step down “immediately”, huh?

/

Key West Reader on July 10, 2013 at 9:02 AM

There is no coup..

Jay Carney said so…

Electrongod on July 10, 2013 at 8:51 AM

Coop – yes
Coup – No

Jabberwock on July 10, 2013 at 9:06 AM

Plus, now neither side trusts US government.

Add us as a side, guess we have a triangle now..

hillsoftx on July 10, 2013 at 9:06 AM

No no no… They’re sending the wrong message and not understanding their diversity and social injustice that naturally led them to these actions…

Skywise on July 10, 2013 at 9:09 AM

The US could have been in position to offer its services as a mediator. Thanks to two years of fecklessness on policy in Egypt, though, the Obama administration finds itself in the odd position of being equally distrusted and disliked by both sides in the conflict

Anne Patterson should have issued a pre-riot apology on behalf of the United States. Just like she did before the enemy took over the Cairo Embassy grounds on 9/11/12 and hoisted the Al Qaeda flag. Because nothing endears a nation to warring factions more than cowardice.

Happy Nomad on July 10, 2013 at 9:10 AM

Maybe Barry should give another speech in Cairo.

Yeah, that should do it.

dissent555 on July 10, 2013 at 9:11 AM

If the new government wanted to avoid a civil war, they’re not demonstrating it with any appreciable restraint at the moment.

Ed, I don’t understand this. Restraint? How do you restrain yourself from arresting suspected leaders of a murderous gang? Restraint? How about the members of the “peaceful” religion restrain themselves from raping and murdering?

Cut off the head and then work with what’s left, that’s restraint.

Vince on July 10, 2013 at 9:12 AM

“We love the American people,” said Bolis Victor, 34, a middle-class merchant in the Egyptian capital, who said he has relatives in Chicago. “But we hate Obama and Patterson.”

Who’s up for the rat-eared wonder heading over to Cairo immediately for another speech from Tahir Square?

Happy Nomad on July 10, 2013 at 9:12 AM

Because nothing endears a nation to warring factions more than cowardice.

Happy Nomad on July 10, 2013 at 9:10 AM

You mean restraint, right?

Vince on July 10, 2013 at 9:13 AM

It looks like the Obama administration could have used another Coptic Christian movie producer..

Electrongod on July 10, 2013 at 9:14 AM

Imagine that….the group that Barack “I love the Muslim Brotherhood” Obama backed is now in jail.

albill on July 10, 2013 at 9:14 AM

Will Obama send in US troops to free his Muslim Brotherhood buddies?

albill on July 10, 2013 at 9:15 AM

They both believe the U.S. government is conspiring against them.

I would have to strongly agree with this statement. Obama is an idiot and has managed to piss all sides off in Egypt with his meddling.

Johnnyreb on July 10, 2013 at 9:15 AM

Who’s up for the rat-eared wonder heading over to Cairo immediately for another speech from Tahir Square?

Happy Nomad on July 10, 2013 at 9:12 AM

You mean the same one he gives here?

“The government is us, and we’re doing things right”

Electrongod on July 10, 2013 at 9:17 AM

I laugh at the superior intellect……

Electrongod on July 10, 2013 at 9:19 AM

Who’s up for the rat-eared wonder heading over to Cairo immediately for another speech from Tahir Square?

Happy Nomad on July 10, 2013 at 9:12 AM

You mean the same one he gives here?

“The government is us, and we’re doing things right”

Electrongod on July 10, 2013 at 9:17 AM

No, no, no. Yesterday’s “speech” was about broccoli .. or something.

Key West Reader on July 10, 2013 at 9:19 AM

You mean restraint, right?

Vince on July 10, 2013 at 9:13 AM

Nope. The United States under this administration has been afraid to lead when it comes to foreign affairs. They are cowards.

Restraint is when a leading nation knows when to get involved and when not to get involved. Ensuring regional stability in the Middle East is in the national interest. Spending millions to prevent Rhino poaching in Africa….. Not so much (but we’re doing it).

Happy Nomad on July 10, 2013 at 9:20 AM

a slow walk to a pluralistic constitution, followed by national elections,

This almost an impossible goal when Islam is involved. Islam is not just their religion. It is the guide they follow for governing as well. So if you’re not on board with it tenants, you are treated as an outcast or more likely destroyed.

Deano1952 on July 10, 2013 at 9:23 AM

You mean the same one he gives here?

“The government is us, and we’re doing things right”

Electrongod on July 10, 2013 at 9:17 AM

No, the one where he talks about it being just as easy to teach love as it is to teach hatred. The one where he dumbs down the realities of international affairs so much that it more resembles a United Colors of Benetton ad than a coherent foreign policy statement. The one where he hints that there is no moral difference between the most repressive dictatorship in the third world and democracies like the US.

Since he’s lazy he could always just recycle one of Hillary’s old speeches.

Happy Nomad on July 10, 2013 at 9:26 AM

Remind me again why we need these Ivy League educated idiots with no common sense running the country again? LOL

Jayrae on July 10, 2013 at 9:29 AM

We are at the stage where I’m actually in favor of the Egyptian military mounting a coup and instituting a secular authoritarian dictatorship. It beats an Islamist authoritarian dictatorship.

rbj on July 10, 2013 at 9:30 AM

No, no, no. Yesterday’s “speech” was about broccoli .. or something.

Key West Reader on July 10, 2013 at 9:19 AM

You notice how he dispatched Biden to the memorial service for those 19 AZ firefighters who were killed but hasn’t said a word about the death/casualty shooting totals in Chicago over the weekend? I’m sure later in the week he’ll weigh in about the Zimmerman trial outcome (particularly if blacks are riled up that the jury didn’t demand immediate execution in the name of “justice” for dear sweet innocent Trayvon).

Happy Nomad on July 10, 2013 at 9:30 AM

Attempting to address those issues will be made all the more difficult if the government ends up in a civil war with the Muslim Brotherhood, too.

They cannot work with the Muslim Brotherhood, not should they try. The Muslim Brotherhood attempted to turn Egypt into a complete dictatorship even worse than what they had before. Morsi and his goons gave up any shred of legitimacy when they gave him those “sweeping powers.”

dogsoldier on July 10, 2013 at 9:30 AM

Jayrae on July 10, 2013 at 9:29 AM

Well, I remember we once tried a peanut farmer!! That didn’t work out too well either. I’ll go with an actor like Ronnie Reagan any day!!

Deano1952 on July 10, 2013 at 9:31 AM

Maybe Barry should give another speech in Cairo.

Yeah, that should do it.

dissent555 on July 10, 2013 at 9:11 AM

Wouldn’t he get arrested? ;) <— That's a wink.

Fallon on July 10, 2013 at 9:32 AM

What really gets me is that everything he touches turns to crap and yet, he and his minions still think they’re on the right course. There has to be another word created for the level of narcissism displayed by this group of morons.

Deano1952 on July 10, 2013 at 9:37 AM

What, exactly, is the track record of the Brotherhood when it comes to “pluralism” and “democratic values”?

Why do they have people in the streets now?

Mubarak saw them as an enemy and threat to his rule. Based upon Morsi’s government, there’s no reason to believe the Brotherhood is interested in any form of “democracy” which includes the possibility of the Brotherhood surrendering power after being defeated in a election. The treatment of the Copts makes it pretty clear they have no interest in respecting basic human rights & dignity.

Where’s the evidence that the Brotherhood is willing & capable of being a partner in government?

BD57 on July 10, 2013 at 9:41 AM

Heh, forgot the obvious…
Obama: “As I said all along, and let me be clear, when a military coup occurs we just pull funding from that nation state until their internal affairs are in order…”

Skywise on July 10, 2013 at 9:42 AM

Will Obama send in US troops to free his Muslim Brotherhood buddies?

albill on July 10, 2013 at 9:15 AM

Yes, he might send in the Marine Corpse to put down this coop.

Dexter_Alarius on July 10, 2013 at 9:48 AM

You notice how he dispatched Biden to the memorial service for those 19 AZ firefighters who were killed but hasn’t said a word about the death/casualty shooting totals in Chicago over the weekend? I’m sure later in the week he’ll weigh in about the Zimmerman trial outcome (particularly if blacks are riled up that the jury didn’t demand immediate execution in the name of “justice” for dear sweet innocent Trayvon).

Happy Nomad on July 10, 2013 at 9:30 AM

Re Saint Trayvon, the REB will do a lot more than that. He will order the moron Holder to begin a federal prosecution of GZ and charge him with denying Saint Trayvon his civil rights.

slickwillie2001 on July 10, 2013 at 9:50 AM

Ah, yes …. smart power

and PEACE and NOBEL
“for his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples.”

burt on July 10, 2013 at 9:59 AM

Wouldn’t he get arrested? ;) <— That's a wink.

Nah! In Cairo he would be hailed, the Illinois one.

burt on July 10, 2013 at 10:04 AM

The Egyptian army posted video of Morsi’s supporters firing on the army…so this crackdown isn’t surprising.

workingclass artist on July 10, 2013 at 10:13 AM

What really gets me is that everything he touches turns to crap and yet, he and his minions still think they’re on the right course.

[Deano1952 on July 10, 2013 at 9:37 AM]

And again, someone thinks the course just about everyone else in the world would judge right to follow, is the same as the course that the Obama administration is actually pursuing.

Some species in nature live and thrive on crap.

Dusty on July 10, 2013 at 10:24 AM

If the new government wanted to avoid a civil war, they’re not demonstrating it with any appreciable restraint at the moment.

Way to apply modern Western Liberal thinking to a Middle East situation. Assuming the charges are true, it’s exactly what you do if you want to avoid a war with a collectivist mindset – you take out the leadership first. Especially if they’ve already demonstrated a willingness to use their cadre to foment unrest.

Unfortunately, this smells like Algeria all over again.

Just my opinion.

Cleombrotus on July 10, 2013 at 10:36 AM

I’m not sure what to think about this, until Bill Crystal shares his enlightened wisdom on the matter.

listens2glenn on July 10, 2013 at 10:42 AM

A reminder:

A Cast of 300 Advises Obama on Foreign Policy

By ELISABETH BUMILLER
Published: July 18, 2008
WASHINGTON — Every day around 8 a.m., foreign policy aides at Senator Barack Obama’s Chicago campaign headquarters send him two e-mails: a briefing on major world developments over the previous 24 hours and a set of questions, accompanied by suggested answers, that the candidate is likely to be asked about international relations during the day.

One recent Q. & A. asked, for example, whether Mr. Obama supported the decision by Iraq’s prime minister, Nuri Kamal al-Maliki, to include a timetable for American troop withdrawal in any new security agreements with the United States. The answer, provided to Mr. Obama with bullet points, was yes — or “a genuine opportunity,” as he put it in a speech on Iraq this week.

Behind the e-mail messages is a tight-knit group of aides supported by a huge 300-person foreign policy campaign bureaucracy, organized like a mini State Department, to assist a candidate whose limited national security experience remains a concern to many voters.

“limited national security experience”

Gee…who knew?

BobMbx on July 10, 2013 at 10:43 AM

Just my opinion.

[Cleombrotus on July 10, 2013 at 10:36 AM]

And a good one.

Dusty on July 10, 2013 at 10:46 AM

Gee…who knew?

BobMbx on July 10, 2013 at 10:43 AM

A lot of us knew. The guy is a complete freaking idiot ideologue.

All he knows is his socialist faith. And Valerie.

dogsoldier on July 10, 2013 at 10:48 AM

The Egyptian army posted video of Morsi’s supporters firing on the army…so this crackdown isn’t surprising.

workingclass artist on July 10, 2013 at 10:13 AM

That will not go the Brotherhood’s way.

dogsoldier on July 10, 2013 at 10:50 AM

[BobMbx on July 10, 2013 at 10:43 AM]

What’s more interesting is that we now know that the State Department can easily absorb much more sequestering.

I do wonder who’s paying for this mini-state department. Do you think the State Department is channeling monies to this obscenity via some outside contractor bidding?

Dusty on July 10, 2013 at 10:54 AM

Maybe they will arrest our mudslime brotherhood domestic terrorist here in the USA before he can anoint anymore to office. We now have our enemies on our payroll while they plot to destroy us and nobody in congress seems to care. I understand the 180 or so that are members of the communist party but there has to be a few that believe in freedom and our Constitution.

harvey1 on July 10, 2013 at 11:12 AM

now neither side trusts US government.

How ironic. Neither do we.

UnderstandingisPower on July 10, 2013 at 11:32 AM

I think the rat eared wonder needs to go to Cairo and give a speech on global warming.

He’s good, real good, at that.

acyl72 on July 10, 2013 at 1:23 PM