When Egyptians massed in Tahrir Square a year and ½ ago, denouncing the corrupt, Western-backed regime of Husni Mubarak, the West was faced with a quandary: How to retain Mubarakism without Mubarak?
After many months of parliamentary wrangling and electoral hijinks, the answer is now becoming clear. The military, with the backing of the courts, have essentially annulled parliament, and by so doing, restored the status quo ante – the rule of the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF),
And like that –‘presto chango’ – Mubarakism without Mubarak.
Husni Mubarak was the chief servant of Western interests, and used his power to repress Egypt’s dissidents and opponents of his regime. The Tahrir Square rebellions made his continued rule untenable.
But, if anything, he was the figurehead, fronting for the military-police-judicial-corporate complex. And, as such, he was dispensable.
So, the early June hearings that sentenced the aging ex-ruler to life imprisonment, that cleared his sons, and cleared many of his regime’s police and military for their immense brutality and violence against the people, cleared the way for this judicial coup of the popularly-elected parliament.
The judicial class in every society is always the most conservative, for their job is to preserve the status quo with the illusion of legality. Notice that this court, which has essentially banished parliament for violating election laws, never batted a judicial eyelash when Mubarek and his so-called Democratic Party stole elections with impunity – for decades. Is it mere coincidence that they also supported the candidacy of Ahmed Shafik – a Mubarak henchman?
The Mubarak years may’ve been years of monstrous brutality, torture and venality (with Western support, of course), but an entire infrastructure of repression benefited from the billions sent in from Washington and Bonn.
That privileged layer of Egyptian society wanted their position back, hence, the counter-revolution, with the blessings of the Mubarak-appointed courts.
Now, the real revolution begins – or its complete betrayal.