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23 June 2012


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FB Ali

Col Lang,

I value your friendship. I don't think we differ much on the assessment of how things are likely to turn out in Egypt. Where the difference lies is, perhaps, in our respective views of whether that outcome would be good or bad.

With my background and experience, I cannot help but believe that ending the grip of the military on a country is a good thing, and allowing the people to choose who should rule them is even better. As I said earlier, I understand and accept that the US may not find that to be in its best interests at this time and place.


FB Ali

I wish them well. pl


and allowing the people to choose who should rule them is even better.

Well, that seems to be precisely the question mark, isn't it? What happens at the next election? Assuming of course that there will be any more elections at all?

The MB hasn't called for the destruction of outer or inner enemies yet? Well, that's well and good, but I understand that the Iranian mullahs did not widely publicize their intent to execute thousands of political opponents either.

Let's see what happens next.


Intriguing discussion.

I'm nothing like knowledgeable enough to judge how things are likely to unfold in Egypt, although like MM I dearly hope the more optimistic view turns out to be right.

Regardless, I wonder if there isn't a deeper consideration. The longer natural social, political and economic evolutionary impulses are suppressed, the greater the likelihood their eventual release will be destructive and extreme. If that's so, mightn't it be better to stop fighting them and accept that whatever turbulence follows will probably be less than would otherwise eventually result?

As to whether an Islamist government (assuming they attain power in the first place) would ever yield it willingly, I wonder. Two considerations spring to mind. First, if they use their power intelligently, I see no reason why they couldn't embed themselves politically for a very long time, perhaps long enough for significant societal changes to shift the very ground on which they'd be operating. Second, even if they behaved foolishly and wished in time to forcefully hold onto the reins, isn't it possible the revolutionary currents that seem to have been unleashed in the Middle East mightn't be quite so easy to suppress next time around?


Nobody mentions that the support of the MB is not entirely coherent. If there is freedom of expression and freedom of the press in Egypt, then we will see the MB fracture.

Medicine Man

I was quite young when that happened, Col. It doesn't look like it has worked out well for the Persians in the long run though. In fact, it may get even worse for them in the near future if their leadership outsmarts themselves.

FB Ali


Both the points you make are good ones. Especially the second one.

Having come into power through the support of the people the MB's past history shows that they will likely work hard to retain that support and win future elections. And, if they lose one, perhaps they will be wise enough to realise that they have a much better future by maintaining the system (by handing over power gracefully) rather than risk its fracture through popular unrest against an attempted usurpation.

Medicine Man

I suppose all I can add is that I have no deep convictions about the nature of the military leadership in Egypt. I'm not suggesting that their nest feathering renders their appraisal of the MB invalid.

When the Mullahs seized power in Iran, did they play up the supposed democratic nature of their revolution much? For how long?



None of that has anything to do with reality. that is just Poly Sci drivel. What has been enabled in Egypt is a return to the Middle Ages. You are too young to remember thr Iranian revolution? The clowns who think/thought that the US runs Egyptian politics, where are they now? The revolutionary forces will calm themselves? Really? Have you ever heard of the Bolsheviks? That took what, 70 years to work itself out and how many million dead? The mullahs have been in charge in Iran since 1979. The US government helped remove the shah. Now we have done it again. pl



Yes, they did and their BS was useful to them just as stroking sheep belps before you cut their throats is useful. That's a Middle Eastern technique that I have participated in. The mutton was delicious. The flogging of whores in the streets will be delayed for a while. pl


That would be my hope too, Furrukh.

No, Col, unfortunately at 60 I'm not too young. You're right of course, revolutions often go terribly wrong. Indeed, they rarely go right and Egypt may turn out to be yet another sad case.

Perhaps, as you said earlier, all one can sensibly do is to wish them well.


It wasn't that long ago the MB said they wouldn't run a presidential candidate. Their word is as meaningless as our presidential candidates.


Col. sir,

RE:"I did not go to enough US war games"

Well, you could've learned ALL the wrong lessons.





Col. sir,

RE:"The flogging of whores in the streets will be delayed for a while."

'Tis true in the mena??

Discounting the fact that yours truly am not a women's lib supporter, but how often have we seen countries that treat their womenfolk like cr*p advancing in any progressive manner?


Egyptian Islamic Jihad, I believe.


"I predict a flight out of Egypt by Copts." I had the same thought.

IMO, the needless deaths and wanton waste of resources aside, the other great tragedy that very few people in DC are willing to talk about is this: As a result of the centrifugal forces that were released by the destruction of Iraq large parts of the Christian population of Middle Eastern countries where they had lived for more than a millennium, where Christianity emerged, will eventually be uprooted.

It is of course utterly inconceivable that any of the messianic loons who kicked this off are taking responsibility for any of that.

Alba Etie

Col Lang
So the Erdogan government in Turkey will in the end wish to impose Sharia law nationally ? Is that why many Turkish military officers were recently convicted of treason ? I thought Erdogan was a moderate ? Should Turkey be part of the EU ?
And what if anything will happen in Syria because the Turkish air force lost its Phantom to hostile fire ?
( If I did not have to work for a living I could spend more time getting up to speed on the ME & beyond) .

Alba Etie

Col Lang
Bolsheviks ? I seem to recall some dimly remembered Freshman History class at University of Houston a quote from Russian Revolutionary Kerensky -to pararphrase .." the difference between right wing political violence and left wing political violence is the difference between cat sh--t & dog sh--t"
It will be grim outcome indeed if Mubarak turns out to be our 21 century Shah .

Babak Makkinejad


You cannot uphold "secularism" in a civilization that is soley and exclusively is based on the Word of God.

Secularism then, by definition, will become antithetical to the foundations of that civilization.

Babak Makkinejad

They did.

That was not the issue.

And the leaders of the Islamic Revolution proceeded to enact the legal structures of the Islamic Republic of Iran through referenda and elections and plebiscite

Later, starting with the second Majlis, they restricted the list of those who could stand for elections to those men and women who displayed outward conformance to Islam.

Sort of like Mexico under IPR.

Mr. Mousavi, the darling democrat of the Green Movement, was the (War) Prime Minister when that happened; nary a peep out of him.

I think people crave piety in their leaders – both in Egypt and in Iran.

And they are happy that they can vote and have their representatives actually do something on their behalf.

Babak Makkinejad

The Iranian mullahs - as you state - were under attack. Various armed political factions - inspired by the Leninist theory of civila war path to power - began a campaign of terror against the new government's officials.

The second president - a former school teacher -, the prime minister, and 73 members of the parliament were assasinated in less than 6 months.

Mr. Khamenei himself is a survival of an assasination attempt; he lost the use of his right arm and hand.

And then there were the various scholars of Islamic Sciences that were randomly attacked and killed all over Iran.

Much of this is conveniently glossed over by the opponents of the Islamic Republic of Iran.


Alba Etie

Try watching "Riley, Ace of Spies" (the series) for a short course on the Bolsheviki. pl

Babak Makkinejad

The French Revolution was followed by 200 years of political instability.

Iran or Egypt may not be that different.

Again, you cannot live other people's histories for them. The population craves a return to the Utopian and Halcyon days of the Prophet and his Companions in Medina.

You can neither argue with them nor reason with them (it matters not what religion you have). They know best and they will proceed down this path....


Alba Etie

Let us not assume that Erdogan's Islamist "reforms" have run their course. pl


Who's definition of the "Word of God"? That has been in duspute for about 1,000 years or more, hasn't it?

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