Tahrir Square Protests: Who Will Win, Weakened Morsi Or the Egyptian Military?
The Egyptian military issued an ultimatum to President Mohamed Morsi in which the latter must agree to the demands of the former or witness the dissolution of the constitution and parliament. In addition, the Egyptian military enforced a deadline of 48 hours for Morsi on July 1. "Wednesday evening marks the expiration of the 48-hour deadline imposed by Egypt's military to 'meet the demands of people' or face a restoration of order by the army," said CNN. This ultimatum is designed to bring all factions to a mutual consensus instead of establishing the Egyptian military as the governing body. However, Morsi has ignored the ultimatum and continues with his campaigns for rebuilding Egypt.
June 30 marks the beginning of a revolution against Morsi, wherein Egyptians took to the streets and shouted "Tamarud," which means "rebel." The anti-Morsi campaigns continue as thousands of demonstrators gathered in Tahrir Square and voiced their demands on July 1.
"Those calling for the end of his presidency include an uneasy alliance of disaffected backers, as well as supporters of the former regime, liberals, and secularists — many of whom were on opposite sides of a violent divide in the heady months after Mubarak fell," said the Guardian. Morsi met with Military Commander Abdel-Fatah El-Sisi and Prime Minister Hisham Qandil in an attempt to discuss current crises. Besides the Egyptian military, President Barack Obama urged Morsi to respond to the protests from demonstrators. "Morsi also spoke to U.S. President Barack Obama by phone on Monday, the presidency said in a separate statement, stressing that Egypt was moving forward with a peaceful democratic transition based on the law and constitution," said the Huffington Post. "The White House said Obama, visiting Tanzania, encouraged him to respond to the protests and 'underscored that the current crisis can only be resolved through a political process.'"
The Morsi administration disintegrated considerably as cabinet members abandoned their roles. "On Tuesday morning, Foreign Minister Mohammed Kamel Amr became the latest and most profile member of Mr. Morsi's cabinet to desert him over the turmoil," reported Telegraph. "He joined four ministers—of environment, legal affairs, communication and legal affairs, who stepped down on Monday." Since his administration has dwindled, Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood are left with little choices and two outcomes: admitting defeat or engaging the Egyptian military in this burgeoning crisis.
Morsi refuses to vacate his office and continues with his strategy for reforming the North African country. The Muslim Brotherhood stands by Morsi and warns the Egyptian military of retaliation if a coup arises. "Supporters of Morsi have continually denied claims that the government is unrepresentative and, on Tuesday, said Egypt would not be 'driven backwards' by the military's threat to intervene," stated the Guardian. "Rallies were held by pro-Morsi supporters in parts of Cairo, including in Nasr City, and in the north of the country, in which Muslim Brotherhood leaders vowed an all-out battle to defend the status quo." The Freedom and Justice Party, a political organization of the Muslim Brotherhood, relied on supporters to counteract the anti-Morsi campaigns without necessarily inciting a coup, the Guardian reports.
By refusing the ultimatum and remaining in office, Morsi is exacerbating tension and decreasing his favor with Egyptians. The Morsi administration feels pressured and fears of growing future violence. His support has greatly dwindled to merely the Muslim Brotherhood, who has lost their former strength and prepares for the second Egyptian Revolution. Thus, Morsi can no longer bypass the demands of the Egyptian military and populace and must either respond to their demands or fight for his office.