Armed Forces Control Egypt

Egypt's Mohamed Morsi is now officially overthrown by the military. Adly Mansour, the head of Egypt's Supreme Constitutional Court, is the new president.

Military commanders say they don't wish to govern, but they're clearly the real power in Egypt.

This, by the way, is why Iran's Revolutionary Guard was created after the Shah was overthrown in 1979. State armies everywhere in the Middle East are allergic to radical political Islam even though the armies are made up of Muslims.

Genuine liberals exist in the Middle East. In some places, such as in Egypt, they're a tiny minority. Seriously, don't kid yourself. The millions of people out in Cairo's streets are not all Jeffersonian democrats. Some of them are, but those crowds also include a motley collection of Nasserists, communists, socialists, anarchists, reactionaries, garden variety hooligans, and gang rapists.

In other countries, such as Lebanon, Tunisia, and Morocco, civil society institutions flourish and liberals are much more numerous.

In most of the region, however, this isn't their moment. The contest for power is still being waged between the regimes and the Islamists.

Egypt is right back where it started. I’m reminded of something Lebanese President Amine Gemayel said during the civil war in the 1980s. “Everyone is against everyone else, and it all keeps going around and around in circles without anyone ever winning or anything being accomplished.”

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