Center for American Progress

RELEASE: Brian Katulis on Egypt’s Uncertain Future, a Year After Revolution
Press Release

RELEASE: Brian Katulis on Egypt’s Uncertain Future, a Year After Revolution

To read the full column, click here.

Washington, D.C. — Today, a year after widespread street protests in Egypt ousted Hosni Mubarak and set in motion a political transition, the Center for American Progress released “Egypt’s Uncertain Revolution” on how United States should respond to the current state of Egypt’s political system.

While Egyptians deserve all the credit for setting in motion the ongoing political transition, the people of Egypt must make no mistake: the same basic group of military leaders that has ruled since 1952 still runs their country. The fundamental structures of power remain intact even after the departure and ongoing court cases of former Mubarak government leaders, innumerable street protests, a constitutional referendum, and parliamentary elections that saw Islamist political parties win a majority in the lower house.

Making matters even more complicated is a new crisis in U.S.-Egyptian relations—the cases of more than a dozen American NGO workers in Egypt threatened with prosecution for working without proper registration and funding partner organizations working on political reform, human rights, and civic activism. This case has prompted a broad range of U.S. leaders to threaten cutting off billions of dollars of aid to Egypt. These allegations and potential court cases are a distraction from the enormous challenges of reform and change. Some of the former powers that be may be using these charges in a desperate attempt to cling to power by distracting the Egyptian people from the bigger issues of reform and stirring up nationalist sentiment.

A year into Egypt’s transition, the Obama administration has made some important tactical shifts in its economic assistance to Egypt. But with major economic difficulties looming, Egypt is going to need substantial support—particularly in increasing economic growth that creates jobs. The United States, in turn, is going to need continued cooperation on counterterrorism and regional security issues from Egypt.

But the bottom line is that Egypt is changing, and U.S. policy on Egypt will need to change, too.

To read the full column, click here.

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To speak with Brian Katulis, please contact Christina DiPasquale at 202.481.8181 or [email protected].