Robert Fisk: A truce is declared in Egypt and the revolution continues – for now

 

Share
Related Topics

Forget about "increased tensions" between Egypt's new President and the dark power of the country's wealthy generals. Yesterday's convening of parliament in Cairo – in violation of a supreme court decision – was an "understanding" between Mohamed Morsi and the army élite that the antagonism between them must go no further.

So when Morsi's Speaker of parliament, Saad al-Katatni (a Muslim Brotherhood acolyte) told parliament, as relayed on state television, that they were gathered to review the rulings of the court (packed with ex-Mubarak acolytes), he was speaking within the limits of legality.

The clue to all this came on Monday when Field Marshal Tantawi, the head of the Supreme Military Council, explained that his decision to dissolve the Brotherhood-dominated parliament had merely been "an executive decision of the constitutional court's ruling". He was followed almost at once – in identical words – by Morsi who claimed that he was issuing "an executive order" to convene the body. In other words, everyone is now waving flags of truce.

The good news is that the new head of the court, appointed last week, is a good guy, known for his probity and anti-élitism. So there is a way out.

And over all these theatricals, of course, towers "the street", the hundreds of thousands – nay, millions – whom the army and ex-Mubarak satraps in the court know Morsi can call upon to demand his rights. Some may call this a balance of power, but there are a few dark shadows around. Not the least of these – sadly – was the absence at the sitting yesterday of some secular and independent members of parliament who, outnumbered by Islamists in the assembly, had no great desire for the "dissolved" parliament to return.

By their abstention, they aligned themselves – unwittingly, as the phrase goes – with the very ex-Mubarakites they fought so courageously during last year's revolution against the dictatorship. If the real revolutionaries lost the parliamentary elections (which they clearly did) then why do they now oppose the very democracy they struggled for, just because Egyptians preferred Islamist members of parliament to non-Islamist ones?

Either way, the 508-seat parliament is clearly back in business, albeit symbolically, and the first 10 days of Morsi's presidency have passed off peacefully – so far – proving (touch wood) that counter-revolutions don't always have to be successful. "Tensions lowered" then, for now.

React Now

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Clinical Negligence Solicitor

Highly Competitive Salary: Austen Lloyd: HAMPSHIRE MARKET TOWN - A highly attr...

Network Engineer (CCNP, CCNA, Linux, OSPF, BGP, Multicast, WAN)

£35000 per annum: Harrington Starr: Network Engineer (CCNP, CCNA, Linux, OSPF,...

Commercial Property Solicitor - Bristol

Highly Attractive Package: Austen Lloyd: A VERY HIGH QUALITY FIRM A high qual...

DevOps Engineer (Systems Administration, Linux, Shell, Bash)

£50000 per annum: Harrington Starr: DevOps Engineer (Systems Administration, L...

Day In a Page

Read Next
 

The power of anonymity lies in the freedom it grants

Boyd Tonkin
Rebel fighters walk in front of damaged buildings in Karam al-Jabal neighbourhood of Aleppo on August 26, 2014.  

The Isis threat must be confronted with clarity and determination

Ed Miliband
Ukraine crisis: The phoney war is over as Russian troops and armour pour across the border

The phoney war is over

Russian troops and armour pour into Ukraine
Potatoes could be off the menu as crop pests threaten UK

Potatoes could be off the menu as crop pests threaten UK

The world’s entire food system is under attack - and Britain is most at risk, according to a new study
Gangnam smile: why the Chinese are flocking to South Korea to buy a new face

Gangnam smile: why the Chinese are flocking to South Korea to buy a new face

Seoul's plastic surgery industry is booming thanks to the popularity of the K-Pop look
From Mozart to Orson Welles: Creative geniuses who peaked too soon

Creative geniuses who peaked too soon

After the death of Sandy Wilson, 90, who wrote his only hit musical in his twenties, John Walsh wonders what it's like to peak too soon and go on to live a life more ordinary
Caught in the crossfire of a cyber Cold War

Caught in the crossfire of a cyber Cold War

Fears are mounting that Vladimir Putin has instructed hackers to target banks like JP Morgan
Salomé's feminine wiles have inspired writers, painters and musicians for 2,000 years

Salomé: A head for seduction

Salomé's feminine wiles have inspired writers, painters and musicians for 2,000 years. Now audiences can meet the Biblical femme fatale in two new stage and screen projects
From Bram Stoker to Stanley Kubrick, the British Library's latest exhibition celebrates all things Gothic

British Library celebrates all things Gothic

Forthcoming exhibition Terror and Wonder: The Gothic Imagination will be the UK's largest ever celebration of Gothic literature
The Hard Rock Café's owners are embroiled in a bitter legal dispute - but is the restaurant chain worth fighting for?

Is the Hard Rock Café worth fighting for?

The restaurant chain's owners are currently embroiled in a bitter legal dispute
Caribbean cuisine is becoming increasingly popular in the UK ... and there's more to it than jerk chicken at carnival

In search of Caribbean soul food

Caribbean cuisine is becoming increasingly popular in the UK ... and there's more to it than jerk chicken at carnival
11 best face powders

11 best face powders

Sweep away shiny skin with our pick of the best pressed and loose powder bases
England vs Norway: Roy Hodgson's hands tied by exploding top flight

Roy Hodgson's hands tied by exploding top flight

Lack of Englishmen at leading Premier League clubs leaves manager hamstrung
Angel Di Maria and Cristiano Ronaldo: A tale of two Manchester United No 7s

Di Maria and Ronaldo: A tale of two Manchester United No 7s

They both inherited the iconic shirt at Old Trafford, but the £59.7m new boy is joining a club in a very different state
Israel-Gaza conflict: No victory for Israel despite weeks of death and devastation

Robert Fisk: No victory for Israel despite weeks of devastation

Palestinians have won: they are still in Gaza, and Hamas is still there
Mary Beard writes character reference for Twitter troll who called her a 'slut'

Unlikely friends: Mary Beard and the troll who called her a ‘filthy old slut’

The Cambridge University classicist even wrote the student a character reference
America’s new apartheid: Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone

America’s new apartheid

Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone