A. M. VASILIEV
Director of the Institute of Africa, Russian Academy of Sciences, Academician of the Russian Academy of Sciences
Keywords: Egypt, Arab Spring, parliamentary elections, Freedom and Justice Party
The first free, democratic elections in Egypt's history were held. The losers, of course, talk about fraud, but their voice sounds weak and does not attract much attention.
Representatives of different strata of Egyptian society and different ideological beliefs expressed their will and demonstrated their preferences. It turned out that the majority of Egyptians reject both secular liberal-democratic or left-wing parties that try to preach Western values, even with some regard for the specifics of Egyptian society and the deep religiosity of the population, and supporters of the former dictatorial regime, who were called "remnants" (al-fulul).
Voters rejected the former ruling National Democratic Party and its ideology. The majority of Egyptians pinned their hopes on Islamist parties for a better life, for the return of justice and political freedoms, getting rid of the arbitrariness of the authorities, improving the standard of living, restoring dignity and national pride.
Elections were possible after the January 2011 revolution that swept away the military-authoritarian regime of Hosni Mubarak. (Its causes, nature, and driving forces have already been considered in numerous studies, including those of the author of these lines.) The Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF), which took power in the country, ensured their conduct both under pressure from the Arab "street" and influential political groups, primarily the Muslim Brotherhood Association, and in response to the demands of the United States and other Western countries, for which the very existence of a military regime has become inconvenient.
Observers noted that the elections were fair and clean. Let's refer at least to the opinion of former US President Jimmy Carter. He stated that his organizat ... Read more