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What Egypt's President Is Up To

6:10 PM, Aug 15, 2012 • By LEE SMITH
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On the other hand, at this point in the game it would be very difficult for American policymakers to object to a revision of the constitutional amendments that essentially amounts to substituting the word “president” for “military council.” The Egyptian president has vanquished Tantawi’s SCAF, thanks apparently to the younger officers who bristled under the former defense minister’s leadership. But it is still too early to say whether Morsi has established once and for all civilian control of Egypt.

Who knows how much Morsi himself is calling the shots, or how much is done in consultation with Muslim Brotherhood leadership, and the man likely to be named deputy prime minister, Brotherhood strategist and millionaire Khairat al-Shater. Perhaps the army will once again be happy to recede into the background where it is most comfortable managing its business interests. In any case, it is only the top, and perhaps most vulnerable, layer of the Egyptian army that lost this round. Should competition between the army and the country’s first civilian president resume, it will be once again for control of the street as well as the shadows, where power in Cairo resides.

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