Why Egypt outlawed the Muslim Brotherhood: Distraction, calculation
— Special to The Globe and Mail
The designation of the Muslim Brotherhood as a terrorist organization by the Egyptian military government is the most recent example of a growing political agitation in Egypt, a new climax of an ongoing crisis that has shattered Egyptian society and its political establishment.
For months, since the ousting of president Mohamed Morsi in July, there has been an open confrontation between his Brotherhood and the military-backed interim leadership. Both claim legitimacy; the Brotherhood claims electoral legitimacy and the interim government claims popular legitimacy after the June 30 uprising against Mr. Morsi. The outlawing of the Brotherhood is a bold move, albeit a risky one, by the interim government to assert its authority as the representative of the people of Egypt against a defiant group that still thinks it has the means and ability to challenge the state.