De strijd in Egypte en daarna

LONDEN – De gebeurtenissen die ertoe hebben geleid dat het Egyptische leger president Mohammed Morsi heeft afgezet, hebben het leger voor een eenvoudige keuze gesteld: interventie of chaos. Zeventien miljoen mensen op straat is niet hetzelfde als een stembusgang, maar het is wel een ontzagwekkende manifestatie van de macht van het volk.

De Moslimbroederschap van Morsi was niet in staat de omschakeling te maken van een oppositiebeweging naar een regeringspartij. Regeringen presteren natuurlijk altijd slecht of goed of gemiddeld. Maar dit was een andere situatie. De Egyptische economie staat aan de rand van de afgrond. Orde en gezag waren nagenoeg verdwenen. De overheidsdiensten functioneerden niet meer naar behoren.

Individuele ministers deden zeker hun best. Een paar weken geleden ontmoette ik de minister voor toerisme, die ik uitmuntend vond. Hij had een verstandig plan om de sector nieuw leven in te blazen. Een paar dagen later trad hij af, nadat Morsi de verbijsterende stap had genomen om als gouverneur van de provincie Luxor (een belangrijke toeristenbestemming) iemand te benoemen die banden had met de groep die verantwoordelijk was voor de terreuraanslag uit 1997 – de ergste die ooit in Egypte plaatsvond – waarbij ruim zestig toeristen in Luxor werden gedood.

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