S-Space College of Social Sciences (사회과학대학) Dept. of Political of Political Sciences and International Relations (정치외교학부) Political Science (정치학전공) Theses (Master's Degree_정치학전공)
Failure of the Muslim Brotherhood after 2011 Revolution in Egypt
2011 이집트 혁명 이후 무슬림 형제단의 실패
- 사회과학대학 정치외교학부
- Issue Date
- 서울대학교 대학원
- 학위논문 (석사)-- 서울대학교 대학원 : 정치외교학부, 2017. 2. 권형기.
- In January 2011, a huge scale of public protest for democratization was held in Egypt. The opposition groups made a coalition and managed to end the authoritarian regime led by President Mubarak, and democratic transition took place – in these processes, it was the Muslim Brotherhood that took the governing position. The Muslim Brotherhood, the biggest and oldest opposition group in Egypt, established a legal political party of Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) and won the serial public elections of parliament and presidency. However, the public support for the Brotherhood quickly dropped and one year after the inauguration of President Morsi from FJP, the Brotherhood regime was ousted by civil protests and the following military coup. This paper deals with the reason for this quick rise and fall of the Muslim Brotherhood, questioning why the newly-elected opposition party lost its legitimacy to complete the democratic transition.
In order to answer this research question, it starts with the review of the past democratization theories. The researches about democratization phases of various states in various eras have suggested different factors for the procedures and results of democratization – including the economic condition, the class politics, cultural backgrounds, and institutions. However, the Egyptian case was found difficult to be explained by using those factors. The unique identity of the Muslim Brotherhood as a religious group put it in the different position with the usual economic classes, and the cultural or institutional backgrounds of Egypt did not show outstanding changes during the political dynamics in recent years. For these reasons, the ideational factors are suggested as the main reason to cause the political failure of the Brotherhood. After the 2011 Revolution, the Brotherhood was given the role to provide the political ideology for the new Egypt, but the Brotherhood-specific ideas about religion and politics could not remain the support from the Egyptian public.
The ideas of the Brotherhood that are shown in its political activities and announcements are analyzed in three categories. First, the Brotherhood leaders came up with their religious ideology in the Egyptian political realm. They used the Islamic slogans to earn the public support in several elections, and presented their own concept of democracy based on the Islamic values. These religion-oriented ideas in politics gave the threat of radical Islamization to other democratic activists and the Egyptian public, which is reflected in the new terminology of ‘Ikhwanization’ (Brotherhoodization). Second, the Brotherhood leaders were concerned with the conflicts against the military officers in government. Their perception toward the military quickly turned from the revolutionary partner to the biggest political enemy. The leading group of the Brotherhood, however, failed to justify and persuade their perceived threat to other political actors, while the military maintained its public confidence. Third, the leaders of the Brotherhood did not manage to coordinate the internal factions with different ideas. The Reformists and youth groups with different ideologies about religion and democracy defected from the group and provided political alternatives to the Egyptian public, further weakening the support basis of the Brotherhood. The Brotherhood leaders were obsessed with the internal solidarity and unity of the whole Muslim Brotherhood, considering the ones with different ideologies as ‘foreigners’. As these ideas were did not gain support from the political actors and Egyptian public, other sectors of the political activists built a coalition against the Brotherhood to organize the Tamarrod (rebellion) to oust the regime.
Those ideas of the Brotherhood shown in the recent years, on the other hand, stemmed from the historical experiences and old ideologies of the Muslim Brotherhood. First of all, the Muslim Brotherhood began as a social, religious organization to propagate the Islamic values to the ordinary Egyptian citizens. For this reason, the leaders were limited in interpreting political activities and political concepts. When the concept of democracy entered the Egyptian society, the leaders accepted it to avoid the criticism as radical Islamists, and developed their own concept quoting their holy texts of Quran and Sunna. Second, as the oldest opposition group in Egypt, the Brotherhood has the longest history of suppression from authoritarian regimes. The Brotherhood members reacted to the oppression in two ways – directly fighting against and complying with the governing regime – both of which caused the distrust toward the officers and lack of political experience. Last, the Brotherhood leaders historically refused to coordinate different ideas inside the group. The leaders, usually senior members of the group, also had the position of religious preachers, given the bigger authority in the group. The Islamic value of obedience and consensus made the inner objection difficult, and the Brotherhood leaders emphasized group unity and ideational consolidation.