Egyptian Chronicles: Road to civil State : Supra-Constitutional test balloon !!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Road to civil State : Supra-Constitutional test balloon !!

On last Monday’s night I spoke about that the meeting held at the Cairo opera house today to discuss that supra-constitutional principles document proposed by Dr. Ali El Salmi and blessed by Sami Anan and SCAF.
Strangely what happened on Tuesday and what the political powers found in the document from controversial articles confirms what I said about that SCAF is searching for both a safe exist as well a secure position for the army in the first place in some sort of Turkey scenario pre-AKP.
Of course after the huge backlash SCAF got last week , we found El Salmi saying it is not an obligatory document and the controversial articles like No.9 and 10 can be amended and everything is negotiable.
The Supra-constitutional document excluding the articles related to the army as well as the supplement concerning the drafting of the constitution are no problem as they deal with the identity of the nation , the citizenship rights ..etc. Now what the bloody article no.9 says :
The state has the right only to found armed forces which are owned by the people , the armed forces’ mission is to protect the country , its territories and security and to keep the unity of its territories and its constitutional legitimacy and no other authority or group to party has the right to form military militias or semi military.
The Supreme council of armed has the exclusive right to revise and supervise all what is related to the armed forces’ issues and the discussion of the armed forces’ budget which will be represented by one digit in the state’s budget. SCAF has the sole and exclusive right to approve any legislation related to the armed forces before its issuance.
The president of the state is the commander in chief of the armed forces , the minister of defense is the general commander of the armed forces. The president declares war except after the approval of the SCAF and people’s assembly.
Ok before we got to article no.10 you know that this article no.9 was proposed in the Supra constitutional principles suggested by Potential presidential candidate Hisham El Bastawisi in last summer and caused huge uproar. 
Strangely El Bastawisi is quiet for some time now in Kuwait. The protector of the constitutional legitimacy party is also suggested by a group of liberal powers, groups and parties in order stand any attempt from the Islamists to change the constitution.
The article is too obvious for anyone , already I do not understand how the approval of SCAF comes before the parliament when it comes to the declaration of war considering it an executive authority by the end of the day. I do not need to speak about the budget because this needs a separate post.
Ironically article no.9 is the biggest article in the document. Now here it is article no.10 :
A National security council for defense is founded and headed by the president and is specialized in the armed forces’ affairs to protect and secure the country , the law will specify its roles related to defense and general mobilization.
Why do we need a national security council for defense if in article no.9 SCAF is the one that controls everything.
Ok moving to the provisional assembly’s standards , we find out the parliament “ people’s assembly and Shura council” will elect only 20 members of the assembly that will draft the constitution while the rest 80 members will be from different sectors and classes in the society.
Needless to say this standard was put to please the liberal forces from Islamsophobia. Of course the document did not say on how we are going to choose those 80 representatives of different sectors and groups in Egypt as they are appointed and not elected to draft our constitution.
The most alarming part is the fact that if the provisional assembly fails to draft a constitution in 6 months or its draft constitution contradicts with March 2011 constitutional declaration or , SCAF will form a new provisional assembly based on its powers as acting president and that assembly will draft a constitution in 3 months.
Well for the new constitution will contradict with the March 2011 constitutional declaration without doubt starting with the shape of the state whether it will be presidential or semi-presidential or parliamentary to the roles of the government and the president.
I am not surprised or shocked that there is a representative from the army and the police as well because seriously it is natural thing and in any democratic society there will be a seat for the army and the police n the provisional assembly that will draft the constitution just like the representatives from clubs and unions.
You can read in Arabic the alleged full document and its supplement in this blog.
In my opinion I believe this document aka El Salmi document as it is now branded in media is none other than a biggest test balloon launched again after the summer by the military to see if we are going to accept it or not. I still believe the military wants to have a safe exist as well to secure the position of the army after 60 years of having an upper hand , that document is a proof on this.
The army knows it will hand over the power to civilian authority sooner or later and this is why it wants to secure its position and its privileges in the best way ever , in a way that can be negotiable if we are speaking about politics.
The Islamophobia was used perfectly to market this document , the military rule or rather the control on the constitution vs. Islamist control. Needless to say I should mention how some media outlets in the past week covered , for instance Al Masry Al Youm described the refusal of the political powers as the coup of the Islamists against the government in its first page !!
Al Masry Al Youm headlines !!"Facebook" 
Everybody blaming El Salmi and his document , the Al Gama’a Al Islamia even accused him of turning the people against the army !! Of course it is not about El Salmi , it is about those who approved this document in this way. Needless to say some people are accusing Tahany El Gably of being the Godmother of that document.
Constitutionally speaking this document must be approved in referendum according to legal experts.
Now quick recap for what happened in the meeting :
  • The old pet parties from the Mubarak era like New El Wafd party, The Unionist party and Democratic front party support the document as well the new parties sprang from the NDP.
  • People like Rafeat El Said , the head of the leftist Unionist party kept attacking the Muslim brotherhood and the rest of the Islamists that boycotted the meeting. El Salmi is already a member in El Wafd party and Ghazli Harb has not problem if the military rules for two years or even more.
  • Parties like El Adl party and El Wasat party decided to withdraw from the meeting for that main reason : The disastrous articles they found and finding all those old faces that spoiled our political life in the past were invited.
  • Ahmed Shoukry’s El Adl party’s member went to the meeting and tweeted about the disastrous articles in the document before leaving. I trust Shoukry and this is why I knew by then there was something wrong in it.
What does this tell us ? Old parties are no use and they are ready to sell themselves to the devil “they already did” to survive from their own point of view. I do not need to swear that if SCAF says that it will leave the rule tomorrow to the unknown these parties will praise the decision.
Here is the statement of Freedom and Justice Party about the document.They held a press conference where they threatened a new revolution if this document is approved and implemented.
More political powers and parties above them MB and Salafists are going to participate in the Friday Tahrir protest to be held on next November 18th insh Allah.
Again this is a test balloon , the military are testing our water once again and see if we forget quickly or not still it is good that it opened several discussions early to save time when we start draft our constitution starting with the position of the army and the provisional assembly. There is nothing wrong in speaking about this now , there is also nothing wrong to reach for a deal that will be good for everybody through talks and  negotiations because even if we have the super uber pro-revolution free officers style SCAF , the military will not give up the privileges of more than 60 years of rule so simply in less than a year especially the majority of the Egyptian people trust in the army more than they trust in the political powers , especially that aside from serving the Mubarak regime for regime. The military thinks in a military way with their own national security fears regardless of their double standards like taking U.S aids and as at the same time suspecting NGOs. I do not need to speak about their privileges too. 
As I hinted in my previous post our main problem we do not have the politicians or political powers that represent the Egyptian people for real in any sort of talks , our big bless in the revolution turned in to a curse now which is the absence of that representative body for revolution or even the Egyptian people for real. We failed to do so due to our endless difference and rivalry nature !! Many people speak on behalf of the revolution , on behalf of the people while they do not actually. One of the worst things in the Mubarak era that it killed something called politics , real politicians have died. We either have old class of politicians that do not know anything about politics or young inexperienced young politicians including activists  who fear and despise politics and think it is against the revolution.
I know that the road to civil state will not be an easy ride or short but it should be peaceful regardless of what because it turns otherwise we will lose , the revolution will lose and most importantly above all Egypt will lose.
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1 comment :

  1. Amazing thank you!!

    The real problem is not with the budget and not with war declaration the real problem is the role of the army after the elections to the parliment

    As El-Baradei mentioned in his twitter the SCAF are going to be part of the executive authority in the following years but 3 Institutions must be independent for democracy to succeed: Media, The legal system and the Economy.

    It must be Free Media, Free Legal system and Free Economy as possible these are the real problems

    Almost in every democratic country the budget of the army is seperate from the overall budget and the army is always apart of any decision to go to war. it's acceptable

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