Foreign policy expert Andy Martin says “the Egyptian takeover was prompted by unrest in Turkey”
New Hampshire U. S. Senate candidate Andy Martin, possibly the Republican Party’s most knowledgeable Middle East/Egypt foreign policy expert with actual overseas experience, is standing by in New York to analyze the military takeover in Egypt. “World politics changed today,” Andy says. We have now seen the second generation of ‘Internet Revolution.’ The Egyptian military takeover is a direct result of the unrest in Turkey last month. Not only has Islam suffered a stunning defeat but the Egyptian revolution will probably lead to a fall of the Erdogan dictatorship in Turkey. The mullahs in Tehran must be apoplectic. It is not often you can ascribe ‘tectonic’ to a military takeover. But the removal of the Morsi regime is a stunning defeat for political Islam and for the rising tide of Islamic dictatorships. A ‘Second Arab [Egyptian] Spring’ is beginning; this time the ‘spring’ may lead to genuine democracy in Egypt and throughout the Middle East. The brief experience Egyptians had with an Islamist regime was too much for them; Turkey may be the next nation where the people decide to remove Erdogan’s budding Islamist dictatorship. Politics no longer operates in separate, individualized national spheres. Because of the Internet and social media every nation is interconnected with its neighbors. Particularly in the Middle East, where Egypt is the unofficial leader, the second Egyptian revolution unfolding today is a revolution that will change the face of the region and may reflect that Time to celebrate. the high water mark of political Islam has been reached, and passed,” Andy believes.
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
U. S. Senate candidate and conservative columnist Andy Martin
explains how “Turkey begat Egypt,” and how Egypt may now trigger a removal of the Erdogan dictatorship in Turkey
“The Egyptian generals have come out of the barracks,”
Andy says, “and Islam may be on its way back to the mosque, where it belongs”
“Islam is not the answer,” Andy says
Part II of a continuing series, “Islam is the Enemy”
(New York) (July 3, 2013)
[Andy’s foreign policy background:
Andy has forty-eight years of experience in Asia, Southwest Asia and the Middle East; he is regarded overseas as one of America’s most respected independent foreign policy, military and intelligence analysts. He is known as an “over-the-horizon” expert who synthesizes conditions to prepare predictive opinions.
Andy first landed in Cairo in 1971; he was in Iran and Afghanistan during the hostage crisis in 1979-80, and has regularly returned to Southwest Asia since then. He lived in Iraq in 2003. His analysis of the terrorist threat in Iran during 1979-80, and again in Iraq in 2003, were leading-edge predictions of what Americans faced in the future. Andy has lived in or been in Israel, Jordan, Libya, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, Viet-Nam, Cambodia, Laos, Thailand, Burma, Hong Kong and the United Kingdom.]
My family first went to Egypt around 130 years ago, during the period of the British and French influence. Near as I can determine (nothing is certain) my great-grandmother lived in Alexandria, Egypt. My grandmother told me my grandfather was an archaeologist before World War I; then he fought in the desert with Lawrence against the Ottomans. My dad also served in the British military and fought the Nazis. So you can imagine I heard a lot about Egypt and the Middle East growing up. I landed in Egypt a few months after the death of President Nasser in 1970.
Here is the bottom line: the overthrow of the Morsi government is a major step forward for democracy in the Arab world. Once again the Obama regime in Washington is making a mess of U. S. foreign policy. Although the “Arab Spring” which reached its high point in Egypt had largely petered out by the time Morsi took office, the underlying currents favoring democratic revolution continued to develop. Educated young Egyptians “did not return to their barracks.” Obama, as usual, looked at the Islamist “trees” Morsi was planting and missed the growing secular pressure building within the Egyptian “forest.”
Here are some thoughts:
1. Is it a “coup” when tens of millions of people rebel?
Wednesday night Barack Obama was quick to threaten the new Egyptian government with a suspension of aid. Obama’s threat was and is a hollow one. The “permanent” U.S. Government will not allow Obama to further endanger our national interests. There is legitimate language in federal statutes that says we will not subsidize military juntas. And properly so. But what do you say when ten or twenty million people reject their leaders and demand a change? That is not a coup. What we have seen over the past few days in Egypt is “Internet democracy” in action.
Have you seen the endless celebrations on TV from Cairo? The Egyptian “revolution” has been just as impressive as American celebrations on the 4th of July. There has not been a “coup in Cairo.” There has been a popular uprising that removed a budding Islamic dictatorship-in-the-making. Let’s share the joy with our Egyptian allies, not make sad faces as they fight for their freedom. Americans are not party poopers. We love it when other countries fight for their own freedom and opportunity. How many U.S. troops were involved in “Operation Egyptian Freedom?” 0. Time to celebrate.
There will be difficult days ahead. Revolutions are never easy even when they appear to begin that way. But political Islam has lost a major battle. Suddenly, the future looks brighter for the people of the Middle East.
2. Who are those people?
I was always irritated when I saw Sean Hannity and the Fox News usuals attacking military aid to Egypt. Why? Because the Egyptian military is a copy of the U.S. Military. Two or three generations of U. S. officers have worked with their counterparts in Egypt. The Egyptian military is a professional military and they are representative of the nation. As in any developing nation, the military’s role is not as limited as it is in our own more established democracy.
But military officers who work together for decades develop a shared sense of mission. They may not be celebrating in the White House tonight, but I do not see any long faces in the Pentagon.
Because Barack Obama doesn’t understand the military culture, and knows nothing about the Middle East, he has a total lack of awareness of what is happening. I doubt Obama even trusts or listens to his military advisers when Islamic issues arise. Obama’s “administration” is not an “administration” at all. It is a collection of campaign hacks who have been placed in politically sensitive government jobs but who have no real world experience and no ability to offer the president any meaningful insight and counsel.
That’s why Obama looked pathetic as he went joyriding across Africa with his family while the world was literally shifting under his feet. He had no sense of priorities, or propriety.
What happened is Egypt is genuinely “tectonic.” Americans have no idea how Egyptian culture and Egyptian governance influence the Arab world. The fact that Egyptians started one revolution, and then another, does not go unnoticed. The fact that Barack Obama is seen as being on the losing side, the Islamist side, will also not go unnoticed. Obama was trying to prop up the Islamists; he failed. (See my column tomorrow: “JULY 4TH: Islam is the enemy, Part III;” Obama, the “Islamist in the White House”
The political hacks who work in the Obama White House have no idea what is happening in the real world. That is why they always appear to be acting like scurrying rats, one day canceling a major part of Obamacare, the next day standing by in stunned silence as the Egyptian people speak and throw off the yoke of Islamic dictatorship.
3. So what triggered the military intervention in Egypt?
In a word, Turkey. The Egyptian military saw how the Turkish military has been Islamized and did not want to suffer a similar fate.
The Egyptian military saw what happened when Turks demonstrated peacefully in Istanbul. Recep Erdogan unleashed the Turkish military against his own populace. During the past decade Erdogan has emasculated the Turkish military and Islamicized the officer corps. Egyptian officers saw that if Morsi was allowed to take control of the military and take control of Egypt, they would have to accept Islamic diktats or be discharged.
The demonstrations in Istanbul were a warning to the Egyptian military, and a catalyst to action. It is no accident that within days of the Istanbul demonstrations the Egyptian military took action to remove the Islamic cabal in Cairo.
Al-Jazeera has been attacked by the Egyptian military as a tool of Islamic domination and propaganda. That may be. But Arab media today are much freer and open than they have ever been. Satellite dishes are widespread, even in Iran where they are banned. Whatever “slant” Al-Jazeera’s news may carry, the network’s pictures tell the real story. The emergence of a second Arab Spring, and the second Egyptian revolution, will be carried to every corner of the Islamic Caliphate.
4. Whose side are we on?
Barack Obama, as usual, is confused, contradictory and on the wrong sided of history. Because of the communications revolution, the Internet, social media and ideas that have not even been invented yet, history is not on the side of political Islam. The mullahs have been a disaster in Iran. The Morsi regime fell of its own weight. In Turkey, so-called “modern” Islam is bumping up against the reality that Islamists now want to start controlling and dictating how ordinary citizens live their lives.
While Islamists use the media as well, their messages go against human nature. People want nicer homes, better food, more entertainment, more education and opportunities for their children. They want to make choices and have options. Political Islam offers none of that. Political Islam largely rejects modern amenities and cultural freedoms.
As long as the Turkish dictatorship offered secular progress and opportunity, Turks remained silent; as soon as the Erdogan regime began to impose rigid Islamist rules on ordinary citizens, and particularly middle class and young Turks, they rebelled. The Turkish rebellion is only smoldering. It could ignite at any time. Obama is on the side of the Islamists, not on the side of ordinary citizens of the world who want more freedom and more opportunity for themselves and their families.
Unlike some, I have no personal antipathy towards Islam. I respect the religion as a religion but believe it should be confined to the mosque and not allowed to dominate city hall. I cannot accept Islam as a “way of life,” where women are veiled, enslaved and subordinated to men, as they are in Saudi Arabia. I am not against Islam as a religion; I am opposed to Islam as a political theology to control peoples’ lives.
5. “Islam is not the answer”
It was New York Mayor Fiorello LaGuardia who famously said “there is no Republican way or Democratic way to clean the streets.” Before the Internet and social media, Islam survived as a “solution” because it had no governing responsibility in the modern world. People were isolated; communications even fifty years ago were nonexistent by today’s starboards. So people could chant “Islam is the answer” without any awareness of what the question was.
When President Morsi took office I knew he would have a rough time even if he “succeeded.” Egyptians are notoriously independent and indifferent to government control. The idea that Egyptians stay awake at night plotting wars against Israel is sheer nonsense. Egyptians stay awake at night partying and enjoying life even given their limited circumstances. Egyptians as a whole are a happy people, not a morose nation. Most Egyptians are Muslims in the same way that most Americans are “Christians.” They follow the religion but it dos not dominate their lives. (There are always exceptions, as the existence of the Muslim Brotherhood and other fundamentalist organizations confirm.)
But before the Internet and social media, Egyptians were cut off from the modern world, and isolated even from themselves. But communications advances have now created the media “revolution,” the “Internet Revolution.” Today’s rebellion in Cairo was the Internet Revolution 2.0.
Dictators can no longer repress their populations in isolation. The populace cannot be kept ignorant. Ordinary Arabs see the “good life” on Al-Jazeera and elsewhere and compare their own poverty and miserable daily conditions. They want better and they want more.
Islamists thought they could create an “Islamic way to clean the streets” and deliver clean water and more jobs. Sadly for President Morsi, Cairo’s streets were not cleaner. Morsi was more interested in imposing his rigid social beliefs than he was in public administration. Morsi was a test case, a failed test case, for Islamic revolution.
Recep Erdogan and Turkey is another test case.
Rather than immediately impose an Islamic dictatorship, Erdogan allowed Turks to have a taste of the good life: increased incomes, improved standards of living. Like the proverbial frog initially being boiled in cold water, Erdogan turned up the Islamic temperature very gradually during the first decade of his rule. Unlike the impatient Mr. Morsi, Erdogan was the epitome of patience.
That is why Erdogan may have succeeded in neutering the Turkish military, for now. But Erdogan’s opposition is building and waiting for its own “Morsi moment”
5. So, what happens with Turkey?
The explosions in Istanbul led to the fall of the government in Cairo. The explosions in Cairo will lead to the fall of the government in Istanbul/Ankara. It is too early to predict whether Erdogan falls by military coup or popular uprising. I suspect his downfall will be a mixture of public demonstrations and a military revolt that begins slowly and catches fire quickly. Ultimately, some part of the army may refuse to shoot Turkish civilians.
What happened in Cairo was unavoidable. What will happen in Istanbul/Ankara is equally unavoidable. Ordinary Muslims do not want to live under an Islamist dictatorship. Muslims may pray, and they may be pious; but they still enjoy privacy and the right to decide for themselves how they live.
Islam is not the answer. Islam is the enemy. Just as generals should be confined to their barracks, Islamists should be confined to their mosques. (The religious right in the Republican Party should also take notice.)
JULY 4TH: “Islam is the enemy, Part III;” Obama, the Islamist in the White House
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Andy is a legendary New Hampshire, New York and Chicago-based muckraker, author, Internet columnist, talk television pioneer, radio talk show host, broadcaster and media critic. Andy’s family immigrated to Manchester 100 years ago; today his home overlooks the Merrimack River and he lives around the corner from where he played as a small boy. He has forty-five years of background in radio and television. He is the author of “Obama: The Man Behind The Mask” [www.OrangeStatePress.com] and he produced the Internet film “Obama: The Hawaii’ Years” [www.BoycottHawaii.com]. Andy is the Executive Editor and publisher of the “Internet Powerhouse,” http://www.ContrarianCommentary.com. He comments on New Hampshire, national and international events with more than four decades of investigative and analytical experience both in the USA and around the world. For more, go to: http://www.AndyMartin.com
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