Obama Throws Weight Behind Muslim Brotherhood in Purge of Egyptian Military and Media
August 16, 2012 • 8:13AM

Sources in Egypt and the United States have confirmed that the Obama Administration has thrown its support behind Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood and President Mohamed Morsi, aiding the purge of the Egyptian military, intelligence directorate, and media in a move ostensibly aimed at preempting a coup, intended to restore the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF) to power. In the past week, President Morsi fired Defense Minister Gen. Tantawi and Armed Forces chief of staff Gen. Annan, along with the head of the General Intelligence Directorate (GID), and the services chiefs of the Egyptian Army, Air Force, and Navy. In addition, 53 editors of state-run news agencies have also been fired and replaced by Muslim Brotherhood and allied figures. Supposedly, Morsi reached a deal with some factions within the SCAF, based on assurances that the military would retain their extensive economic interests. According to an Egyptian source, Gen. Sissi, the newly appointed head of the armed forces, was in Washington in recent days as the events were playing out on the ground in Egypt.

The across-the-board clean-out of the top echelons of the armed forces and intelligence, came in the wake of the recent jihadist attacks in the Sinai, in which 16 Egyptian soldiers have been killed. According to the Washington and Cairo sources, the move came as part of an effort to preempt what was being built as a coup d'etat plot against Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood, centered around a mass anti-government rally called for Tahrir Square on Friday, Aug. 24 and financed by the Egyptian business leaders who were the backbone of the Mubarak government. According to the sources, Obama Administration officials alerted the Egyptian government about possible coup scenarios around the mass demo, which was to draw 1-2 million people to Tahrir Square, in hopes of provoking a confrontation with the Muslim Brotherhood and other Morsi backers.

Beyond the byzantine details, what emerges clearly is that the Obama Administration is actively backing Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood against the SCAF and the armed forces.