Not What They Expected
Though the first wave of Egyptian elections have been conducted, uncertainty and apprehension still prevails. Your article on the Egyptian elections described critically the role of the youth in not only overthrowing the Mubarak regime but also getting involved in the political process that was to follow. It is true, the fervor, dedication and patriotism of the Egyptian youth have become an example and motivation for young people across the globe. However, many across the world who were expecting a free, open and liberal Egypt may be in for a surprise. For a country that is unaware of democratic processes and harbors a number of Islamist groups, has in effect unleashed Islamic parties on to the forefront. This is no more evident than the Mus- lim Brotherhood comfortably leading the polls with the radical Salafist party coming in as a close second. The Egyptian coalition, an alliance of left and liberal parties, came in third place.
The highly-conservative Salafist party has asked for the strict implementation of Shariah and has called for turning Egypt into an Islamic state. Though the Muslim Brotherhood has been prompt to distance itself from the Salafists, what is certain is that Islamist parties will dominate the parliament, which in the future might strike a hard blow to the brave efforts of the youth and western international support.
Tariq Fatemi Alexandria, Egypt