In the wake of the Egyptian Revolution, the most sceptical analysts compared it to the 1979 Iranian Revolution. After the electoral victories of the Muslim Brotherhood, this view acquired many followers. Two years and a half after Mubarak’s fall, it does not seem the country is turning into a theocracy. However, the Iranian model may still be relevant to understand where Egypt is heading. We just have to replace a religious garb by a military one.
The Iranian system may be described as “limited pluralism” within a theocratic framework. Elections are held regularly, but only candidates who adhere to the official ideology of the State can participate. Thus, a large part of the society is excluded. Something similar could happen in the new Egypt. According to the view of most members of the constitutional assembly, Islamist parties, which gathered around 70% of the votes in the last parliamentary elections, should be banned.
The campaign of arrest against the leadership of the Muslim Brotherhood, including its Supreme Guide, has gone much further than Mubarak ever did, which suggests that the new authorities want to exclude the Brotherhood from the political landscape in Egypt.
At the helm of the Iranian regime there is a so-called Supreme Guide, an ayatollah who has veto power over the most important decisions of the government, especially in the field of national security. The elected president’s main task is to manage the economy.
The next Egyptian president could find himself in the same position. ¿After what happened to Morsi, would the new rais dare to challenge al-Sissi’s views? The Defense minister is the most powerful man in Egypt, a role he will probably keep leading the country behind the curtains. Or he may even decide to run in the next elections, which he would win very easily. So far, there are several campaigns gathering signatures to convince him to be a candidate in the next elections.