Egypt’s Power Struggle: Three Things to Know

Egypt’s Power Struggle: Three Things to Know

November 27, 2012 4:10 pm (EST)

Egypt’s Power Struggle: Three Things to Know
Explainer Video
from Video

Mass protests have once again erupted in Egypt following President Mohamed Morsi’s controversial move to eliminate judicial oversight over his presidential powers. Ed Husain, CFR’s senior fellow for Middle Eastern Studies, highlights three underlying issues at the core of Egypt’s power struggle:

More From Our Experts
  • More on:

    Egypt

    Morsi’s Motivation – "The Egyptian judiciary has been highly politicized since Mubarak’s days," Husain says, and has been responsible for nullifying an elected lower house of parliament and dismissing the former constitution writing assembly. Morsi claims that his actions were meant to preserve the aims of the revolution by preempting further disruption by the judiciary, Husain emphasizes.

  • More on:

    Egypt

    Weak Opposition – Much of the reason for Morsi’s successful power grab has been the opposition’s weakness, Husain says. "The opposition parties in Egypt have been highly dysfunctional, deeply confrontational, and lack legitimacy outside their limited political networks, and thus far they’ve failed to articulate a vision."

    More From Our Experts
  • More on:

    Egypt

    Constitution at Risk – The political infighting is diverting attention from the real issues that should be on the table and being discussed, and "at risk in all of this is the writing of the constitution," Husain cautions. "This is not just a challenge in Egypt but across other Arab spring countries," he says.

    More on:

    Egypt

Close

Top Stories on CFR

Middle East and North Africa

Turkey’s geography and membership in NATO have long given the country an influential voice in foreign policy, but the assertive policies of President Erdogan have complicated its role.

Religion

For the past two thousand years, the pope has been a major player in global affairs. He is frequently called upon to act as a peace broker, a mediator, an advocate, and an influencer; and with over 1.3 billion followers around the world, the pope and his governmental arm, the Holy See, have the power to shape the future. How has the pope's power changed over time, and what is his role today?  

Public Health Threats and Pandemics

Opioid addiction in the United States has become a prolonged epidemic, endangering not only public health but also economic output and national security.