Why Did Egypt’s Brotherhood Break Off Ties with Syria?

By:  Samir Karam Translated from           As-Safir (Lebanon).  
    اقرا  المقال الأصلي باللغة العربية
Nearly 40 years after Egypt decided to abandon its pan-Arab nationalist  policy and adhere to US policy, it is no surprise to see the Egyptian government  uninterested in Arab affairs with the ascent of the Muslim Brotherhood to power.
To those who don’t know yet, the Muslim Brotherhood doesn’t believe in Arab nationalism nor Egyptian nationalism. When Britain was  a colonial power in the Arab region, the Muslim Brotherhood adopted British  policy. Now that the US is dominating the region, the Muslim Brotherhood has  adopted US policy.
The events in the region have revealed that only one year after Mohammed Morsi became president, the Egyptian people  have started resisting this policy. There may soon be a serious confrontation  between the Egyptian people and the Muslim Brotherhood. Nobody knows where that  confrontation will lead. Even though all evidence suggests that the events in  Egypt are moving in that direction, the Muslim
Could it be that the Brotherhood doesn’t realize the seriousness of the  Egyptian people’s position after they had experienced the way the Brotherhood  governs? The answer is yes. This is the only explanation for the Brotherhood’s  dangerous decision. The Egyptian people have decided to confront the  Muslim Brotherhood, even remove Morsi from power, because the Brotherhood has  decided to take Egypt out of the Arab-Israeli conflict and move closer to the  United States.
That is the only reason why Morsi decided to break Egypt’s relationship with  Syria and consider sending to Syria troops who will side with the opposition in  support of US objectives, which entail destroying Syria, partitioning it, and ending Syria’s role in the Arab  region.
Morsi didn’t care that his decisions were in line with Washington’s decision  to provide the Syrian opposition with weapons. Perhaps Morsi  was compelled to make those decisions under US pressure and was afraid that the  US might pull its support for the Muslim Brotherhood and see what a new Egyptian  revolution might bring.
As everybody knows, Morsi doesn’t make his own decisions. He receive orders  from the leaders in the Muslim Brotherhood organization. Those leaders didn’t  consider the Egyptians’ opinion before they took their decision on Syria. Those  leaders are also unaware of how determined the Egyptians are in removing the  Muslim Brotherhood from power.
The Muslim Brotherhood didn’t expect Morsi’s decisions on Syria to outrage  the Egyptian masses, who considered those decisions a declaration of war on  Syria. The question they raised was: Why declare war on Syria instead of Israel?  That was the Egyptian reaction from everyday citizens, intellectuals, political  analysts and journalists. Worse, the US didn’t bother to reassure the Muslim  Brotherhood as it does in similar situations. The US was busy congratulating the  new Iranian president for his victory and completely  ignored the Egyptian declaration of war on Syria.
In former President Gamal Abdel Nasser’s era, it was considered disastrous for  Egypt and Syria to move in opposite directions. This is what is happening now.  Why did that happen? Perhaps the answer to that question is that June 30 is fast approaching and the Muslim Brotherhood  is afraid of the coming popular revolt. Some expect violent clashes between the  Egyptian masses and Muslim Brotherhood loyalists.
Some cannot imagine those clashes ending except by the removal of the Muslim  Brotherhood from power. The Egyptian masses will not back down in front of the  Muslim Brotherhood’s supporters, even if the latter were armed. There is even  the possibility that if the Muslim Brotherhood confronts the Egyptian masses  with arms, then the Brotherhood will find the Egyptian army standing in their  way.
In recent weeks and months, the Egyptian masses have tried to find out what  the Egyptian army will do if there’s a confrontation between the people and the  Brotherhood. Most Egyptians are convinced that the army will stand with the  Egyptian people. The Egyptian army, which often makes statements that are open  to interpretation, has recently been making statements that clearly suggest that  the army stands on the Egyptian people’s side.
So there is no possibility that the Egyptian army will go to Syria to fight  the Syrian regime. But aren’t the Muslim Brotherhood and its leaders aware of  that? The answer is that the Muslim Brotherhood has ideological interests that  go beyond Egypt or any nation’s borders. The Egyptian people interpreted Morsi’s  decision to send troops and volunteers to Syria as a war declaration intended to  gather Brotherhood members in Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Libya, Yemen, Jordan and  beyond the Arab world such as Chechnya, Pakistan and Afghanistan, and even  Brotherhood members in Western Europe. Some Arabs and Muslims may be tempted to believe that the United States  wants to exploit the Muslim Brotherhood’s role and get the organization mired in  wars not only in Syria, but also in Egypt, Turkey, Jordan, the countries of the  Arab Maghreb, and in Muslim countries in Africa. In that  case, American objectives would conflict with European objectives. But  considering America’s recent decisions on Syria and Egypt, it is clear that the  US doesn’t mind that. Perhaps this is why Britain, Italy, Austria and other  European countries didn’t automatically support the US decision to start arming  the Syrian rebels.
Washington thinks that this disagreement with Europe can be  resolved. In any event, the decisions being made by the various parties in this crisis  suggest that those parties have not carefully thought through the details. This  applies to the US, Europe, and regional parties, which seem hesitant and  confused. Egypt, Jordan and the Gulf oil states are playing a specific roles in  the current conflict but they don’t seem to have carefully considered the  consequences. Those countries are relying on US calculations, but the US only  cares about its own interests.
Morsi’s decision on Syria is a poorly thought-out decision whose effects are  unknown.

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