Back to the Drawing Boards

The Obama administration has sometimes been tactically adroit in dealing with Egypt since the fall of Mubarak in February 2011; at other times it has been caught flat-footed. But the nature of political changes afoot in Egypt today now demands more than adjustment, but instead a fundamental rethinking of a relationship that has been a cornerstone of U.S. policy in the Middle East since the Nixon administration.




The Tally

There is a fair amount in the recently concluded U.S.-Russian framework agreement on Syria's chemical weapons that could belong in the domain of the tooth fairy. But should the accord be implemented, it would validate Woody Allen's philosophy about life, slightly amended and applied to diplomacy: Success isn't just about showing up, it's showing up at the right time.

Egypt’s Struggle for Democracy

How has Egypt fared since the military’s removal of President Morsi? Has the situation stabilized and is the nation on a path toward meaningful and lasting democratic reforms? Mohamed Anwar El Sadat, a nephew of the late Egyptian President Anwar Sadat, and Sameh Fawzy, who was appointed to Egypt’s Shura Council by former President Morsi, provide context.

Egypt’s Predicament after Two Revolutions

Mona Makram-Ebeid, former member of Egypt's Shura Council and a distinguished lecturer in the political science department at the American University in Cairo, spoke about the effects of the 2011 and 2013 revolutions on Egyptian society.

On September 24, the Middle East Program at the Woodrow Wilson Center held a meeting on “Egypt’s Predicament after Two Revolutions” with Makram-Ebeid, also a former fellow at the Wilson Center. Haleh Esfandiari, Director of the Middle East Program at the Wilson Center, moderated the event.

Rising Muslim Concerns about Islamic Extremism

            Concern about Islamic extremism is rising among many of the world’s Muslims, according to a new Pew Research Center survey. In five of the 11 surveyed countries — Indonesia, Jordan, Pakistan, Tunisia and Turkey — worries about extremism have increased since 2012. A median of 67 percent of Muslims across the 11 countries are somewhat or very concerned about extremism. At least half of the Muslims surveyed in most countries surveyed said that suicide bombing or other acts of violence that target civilians can never be justified in the name of Islam.

Islamists Endure in Egypt’s New Political Map

Nervana Mahmoud

Is Egypt on the Right Path? A Conversation with Egyptian Policymakers

Three policymakers from an Egyptian delegation visiting Washington discussed the current state of affairs in Egypt, prospects for democracy, and the future role of the Muslim Brotherhood in their country.

Can Egypt’s Latest Lifeline Result in a Modern Constitution?

Dr. Khattab submitted a list of amendments to the committee of ten in charge of revising the constitution. Some of these suggested amendments are marked in this article with a *.

Dalia Ziada on Egypt’s Turmoil

            Dalia Ziada is an award-winning human rights activist and the executive director of the Ibn Khaldun Center for Development Studies in Cairo, Egypt. She analyzed the ouster of the Islamists in the following interview.

How do you feel about the July 3 military intervention now? Do you view it as a coup?

Islamists Under Fire

            In stark contrast to the euphoria after elections two years ago, Islamist political parties across the Middle East now face escalating challenges to their rule. The main drama is playing out in Egypt between the army and the Muslim Brotherhood. But Islamist parties in Tunisia, Libya, Morocco and Gaza are also under pressure from emboldened opposition movements. The question across North Africa particularly is whether political Islam is ebbing.