A Blog by the Editor of The Middle East Journal

Putting Middle Eastern Events in Cultural and Historical Context

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

FJP Declares Support for NGOs

Egypt's Freedom and Justice Party, the Muslim Brotherhood's Political Arm, has issued a declaration supporting the work of Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) working for democracy in Egypt and has called for the lifting of all restrictions on their registration and operations.

This is the latest of several posiions which distances the FJP from the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF), and seems shrewd: it seemingly positions the party on the side of democratization and, not so incidentally, is a gesture to the US on this issue (they recently met with Sen. John McCain), even though many Brotherhood positions are at odds with US policies in the region. Though I am not a great admirer of the Brotherhood and believe their democratic rhetoric needs to be judged by what they actually deliver in power, this is a reminder that they are far more attuned to the political vibrations of the moment than the remarkably tone-deaf SCAF. It's also a sign, I think, that the FJP, after working closely with SCAF for a year, is now preparing for a struggle to give the Parliament real power vis-a-vis SCAF.

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