Though crowds are calling for him to step down and the military has given 48 hours
for him and opponents to craft an inclusive roadmap for Egypt's future, President Mohammed Morsi is likely to retain power — at least for a time, former Assistant U.S. Attorney Andy McCarthy tells Newsmax TV.
McCarthy, who successfully tried the Blind Sheik and other terrorists convicted of the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, is author of "Spring Fever: The Illusion of Islamic Democracy."
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Morsi, the first democratically elected president of Egypt, is a member of the Muslim Brotherhood who assumed office June 30, 2012 following the ouster of Hosni Mubarak, who had served 30 years. Crowds attacked and ransacked Muslim Brotherhood headquarters Monday
Morsi will hold onto power for a time, McCarthy says, but he questions whether Morsi has had enough time to put his own people in key positions in the military – and, if so, will they remain loyal?
The U.S. should encourage dialogue, McCarthy tells Newsmax, but should not project strong support for Morsi and continue to fund a Muslim Brotherhood-driven military.
"The authentic Democrats in Egypt are actually opposed to this regime and are really angry at the United States for propping up what really is an authoritarian system," McCarthy said.
He described the opposition as "a real mixed bag," adding, "We don't want to make the same mistake we've made in the so-called Arab Spring of just thinking they're just a bunch of pro-Western democracy activists."
In reality, the demonstrators are united by opposition to the regime, he said.
"All of the different factions, including the Salafists, who are also Islamic supremacists, and even more rabid for Sharia change than the Brotherhood is, have problems with the Muslim Brotherhood and its authoritarian practices," he said. "But they don't all have problems with the Muslim Brotherhood for the same reasons."
The Muslim Brotherhood is being discredited, McCarthy said, but that's not something the United States should take heart in. "They have their hands on the wheel, so to speak, and they're a much more dangerous organization that way."
McCarthy called an "atrocity" the June 13 White House national security staff meeting with Sheik Abdullah bin Bayyah, a deputy of radical Egyptian cleric Yusuf al-Qaradawi, the so-called spiritual leader of the Muslim Brotherhood who has been banned from entering the United States.
But it's not the first time the administration of President Barack Obama has done something similar, he pointed out. The administration previously issued a visa to a member of the Blind Sheik's terrorist organization and invited him to Washington to consult with U.S. national security officials.
Bin Bayyah also signed off on the 2004 fatwa calling for the killing of American troops and personnel in Iraq, McCarthy said. "The thought that we would have a terrorist supporter like that not only as someone we look to as an influential figure, but that we’d actually invite him here to consult on policy is just mind boggling," he tells Newsmax.
It sends a message that "it's a pretty good deal right now to be an enemy of the United States. It's our friends that seem to get a hard time," McCarthy said.
The United States, he said, has supported the notion that Islamists getting into power would tame and moderate them. "And that has been to the great detriment of people who actually are lovers of liberty around the world," he said.
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