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    Mohamed ElBaredei Steps Out Of His Sheep’s Clothing

    Mohamed ElBaredei Steps Out Of His Sheep’s Clothing

    Mohamed ElBaradei is one of those figures who, because he is fairly westernized, easily manipulates western media and left-of-center bloggers and pundits into thinking he wants a western-style democracy in Egypt.

    It is not surprising that despite his obvious opportunism, ElBaradei has become something of a hero to those in the West opposed to Mubarek.

    But anyone who was familiar with ElBaradei recognized him for what he was, a stalking horse for the Muslim Brotherhood.  And now it is official:

    Earlier Sunday, the Muslim Brotherhood threw its support behind ElBaradei to hold proposed negotiations with the government in order to form a new unity government.

    Speaking to Al-Jazeera, Muslim Brotherhood official Essam el-Eryan said that “political groups support ElBaradei to negotiation with the regime.”

    ElBaradei, in an interview aired on CNN Sunday, said that Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak must leave the country immediately.

    “It is loud and clear from everybody in Egypt that Mubarak has to leave today, and it is non-negotiable for every Egyptian.” he said. He added that it should “be followed by a smooth transition [to] a national unity government to be followed by all the measures set in place for a free and fair election.”

    A “national unity government.”  That’s exactly what happened when the Shah left Iran, only to have the Islamists take advantage of the power vacuum.  And it’s what happened in Lebanon until Hezbollah pulled out and collapsed the government recently.  And in Gaza between Hamas and the Palestinian Authority, until Hamas seized full control of Gaza.

    ElBaredei is a wolf in sheep’s clothing, and so would be a national unity government. 

    Eqypt may need Mubarek gone, but it does not need a facade of unity which will be used by the Muslim Brotherhood to consolidate power.

    Update:  About ElBaredei’s outreach to the Muslim Brotherhood, and the possible consequences, in a piece written last April, The Islamist Flirtation:

    For ElBaradei, such outreach might simply be good retail politics. After all, with control of one-fifth of the seats in Egypt’s parliament, the Brotherhood — though still formally banned, and routinely persecuted, by the Mubarak regime — wields considerable political clout.
    Still, political participation doesn’t necessarily mean moderation. The Brotherhood’s long-awaited political platform, unveiled publicly back in October 2007, laid out a radical, exclusionary vision that marginalized women and non-Muslims and advocated the establishment of a religious authority with oversight over all governmental activity. The following year, an internal election within the movement strengthened the party’s hard-liners. More recently, conservative factions within the Brotherhood have been accused of carrying out a “purge” of the movement’s reformist wing — a charge confirmed by the installation of ultraconservative cleric Mohamed Badie as the organization’s supreme guide in January. If the Brotherhood is joining a coalition committed to political liberalism, it’s clearly not for ideological reasons.

    And also check out this article from March 2009 in Haaretz, the left-wing Israeli newspaper, How ElBaradei misled the world about Iran’s nuclear program.

    As Caroline Glick pointed out earlier this week, the stakes are high militarily:

    Owing to that US aid, the Egyptian military today makes the military Israel barely defeated in 1973 look like a gang of cavemen. Egypt has nearly 300 F-16s. Its main battle tank is the M1A1 which it produces in Egypt. Its navy is largest in the region. Its army is twice the size of the IDF. Its air defense force constitutes a massive threat to the IAF. And of course, the ballistic missiles and chemical weapons it has purchased from the likes of North Korea and China give it a significant stand-off mass destruction capability.

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    Reliapundit | January 30, 2011 at 4:07 pm

    fyi, counselor,

    i posted on el baradei and the MB two years ago.

    and numerous times since.

    Richard Sagers said…

    "Bad news there: I've been seeing reports that military forces are joining the protesters. I don't think that bodes well."

    That was just "eyewitness" reporting from Aljazeera just like the report that the government was looting the museum. I'm sure there are sympathizers in the military but soldiers going AWOL is not the same as military brass switching sides. The Egyptian military is trained and armed by the US.

    I don't think we should assume that we really know what is going on in Egypt since we can't trust the reports. I certainly don't know what is really going on. I saw a Boston couple interviewed in Cairo yesterday claiming that other than the disruption to communications, you would never know that there was a problem and they felt safe. They also said they were often the only tourists when they arrived at their destinations. Dumb or what?

    sort of runic rhyme | January 30, 2011 at 4:39 pm

    How is it not obvious that this cascading event across the ME Muslim world was instigated and fed by socio-political conditions that have been prepped in favor of Islamist sympathy? Given, we and the West have failed there– b/c we fail here. Bush had a small window in which to encourage moderate and less corrupt power sharing in the ME, but his and the neocon's initiative failed. It was unpopular with the bien pensant.

    In most parts of the world, but especially in the the Arab-Persian-Asian crescent and star, "democracy" is a pornographic concept (you just have to know it when you see it for us, and also it's not what Allah would want [WWAW] for them.) Clearly, the powder keg lit by officially unspecified interests leading to "spontaneous" riots and Egyptian military machinations in north Africa and the Levant don't constitute the D word.

    At this point, there is no principle for Americans to support, now, other than self interest. Our idea of democracy shouldn't be rabble gone wild, and especially in favor of populist totalitarian Islamism. Of course, Obama interprets US self-interest to mean his political prospects and hard-wired progressive post-American inclinations. IOW, we're screwed. Even a political change in 2012 will not have immediate amelioratory effects.

    Does the situation today show us how clever Israeli computer viruses can't save the day, ultimately, when some are hellbent on hell?

    "Has the policy "We don't negotiate with terrorist" gone down the drain?" – retire05

    You're assuming the Administration has the same definition of 'terrorist' as we do.

    ElBaredei is an Iranian front. I don't know how they got to him, but they did, and his call of support for MB is opportunistic Iranian policy in the current flux. The mullahs of Qom have as much use for MB, ultimately, as they do for AQ: zero, which is also their friend in the WH, who MB thinks is theirs, their stalking horse. Proximately yes, ultimately, no — he is Qom's stalking horse via his tribal heritage and loyalties (Odinga, etc.).

    MB is being played, radically, as is AQ — by Iran. Persians are superior to Arabs in a fight. ElBaredei figured that out probably years ago and picked his side accordingly.

    This is why Saud supports Mubarak. They're scared. They should be, they are on the handicapped side in current conditions …. Saud's strongest ally in the ME now is Israel and the IDF/IAF. Saud will get no consolation from the occupants of the White House or staff at DOS, only subversion. WH and DOS are Iran supports. (That infamous picture of blood poison bowing to Saud was misdirection and everyone present to it knew it to be. They knew his loyalty was to Qom.)

    ""Has the policy "We don't negotiate with terrorist" gone down the drain?" – retire05

    You're assuming the Administration has the same definition of 'terrorist' as we do."

    O yes. If I may be so bold as to fill in the rhetorical lacuna: this administration's definition of terrorists is, any individual, especially any suburban-or rural-residing individual, not a member of the Democratic Party, or, anyone who is essentially unimportant and effectively not a US citizen because they demur this administration's assumptions ("beliefs"), verbiage ("calls"), whims ("policies") or actions ("initiatives").

    @ Pasadena Phil: you're not in a position to say what O or anyone in her administration should do. You have no authority there, no "standing." Yours words in that posture are empty pretense.

    I see nothing in the ME about which to be upset or fearful. Nor in the USA. The people who have responsibility for affairs are handling them under expert guidance.

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