Will the Village foreign-policy capos ever figure out that we have hardly any tools to affect developments in the Muslim world?
Two current reports from the heart of the Arab world: one from Reuters about the latest development in Egypt in response to the surprising ascendancy of new President Mohammed Mursi, who mere months ago was presumed to be a mere figurehead serving under the thumb of the Egyptian military; and one from one of those infernal Village foreign-policy "experts" who keep trying to press the U.S. to do all sorts of things in the Middle East whose most likely outcome would be to make already unfortunate situations worse.
CAIRO | Sun Nov 25, 2012 8:59am IST
(Reuters) - Egyptian President Mohamed Mursi faced a rebellion from judges who accused him on Saturday of expanding his powers at their expense, deepening a crisis that has triggered violence in the street and exposed the country's deep divisions.
The Judges' Club, a body representing judges across Egypt, called for a strike during a meeting interrupted with chants demanding the "downfall of the regime" - the rallying cry in the uprising that toppled Hosni Mubarak last year.
Mursi's political opponents and supporters, representing the divide between newly empowered Islamists and their critics, called for rival demonstrations on Tuesday over a decree that has triggered concern in the West.
Issued late on Thursday, it marks an effort by Mursi to consolidate his influence after he successfully sidelined Mubarak-era generals in August. The decree defends from judicial review decisions taken by Mursi until a new parliament is elected in a vote expected early next year.
It also shields the Islamist-dominated assembly writing Egypt's new constitution from a raft of legal challenges that have threatened the body with dissolution, and offers the same protection to the Islamist-controlled upper house of parliament.
Egypt's highest judicial authority, the Supreme Judicial Council, said the decree was an "unprecedented attack" on the independence of the judiciary. The Judges' Club, meeting in Cairo, called on Mursi to rescind it. . . .
MEANWHILE IN SYRIA -- THE FOREIGN-POLICY CAPOS
CONTINUE PRETENDING WE KNOW WHO OUR "FRIENDS" ARE
WASHINGTON POSTMany of these same foreign-policy dunderheads are the same people clucking day and night about the great scandal of Susan Rice as the villain of Benghazi.
Syrian rebels at cross purposes
By David Ignatius, Published: November 23
The Syrian opposition took a big step forward this month by forming a broad political coalition that includes local activists who started the revolution. But the opposition’s military command is still a mess, and until it’s fixed, jihadist extremists will keep getting more powerful.
As I wrote after my trip inside Syria in early October, a stronger command-and-control structure is crucial in creating an opposition force that can accomplish two essential tasks: defeating President Bashar al-Assad and maintaining order in Syria after he falls. The United States had encouraged the rebels to form provincial “military councils” to achieve better coordination. But the rebel forces have continued to splinter in recent weeks.
Talking with some of the Free Syrian Army activists who arranged my trip into Syria, I’ve heard examples of the chaos caused by bypassing the military council (MC) structure. Maj. Mohammed Ali and Maj. Maher Noaimi, two rebel commanders from Hama, are said to be receiving money directly from gulf nations. “Ali and Noaimi are still serving as middlemen for all sorts of folks, and they’re working outside the MCs,” complained one report last month to the State Department about the confused funding. . . .