Reviewing and analyzing the circumstances, nature, and objectives of revolutions in general and Egypt’s revolutions in particular, since the British occupation of Egypt in 1882 and until the June 30 revolution, we find that the latter was consistent with most revolts in Egypt and abroad but it had distinct features and a special nature than all internal revolutions and some global ones. In this article, we review some aspects of its distinction:
The Substantial Spontaneous Mobilization in No Time: Concerned global reports indicated that satellite imaging the density of the standing crowd per square meter revealed that about 35 million individuals participated in the protests, with these gatherings taking place in a short time during the second half of June 30.
Clarity of Purpose, i.e. the Early Presidential Elections: After a year of poor presidential performance by the political Islam faction that crippled Egypt, internally and externally, it was evident that the Brotherhood’s rule does not fit the state. The plan was that if the early election is conducted and the former president (Morsi) wins, he would complete his term to correct his mistakes, and if not, he would leave honorably. Perhaps if it was in the President’s hands, he would have agreed, but it was in the hands of his Brotherhood leadership, which considers him its representative in the presidential palace. Knowing that its chances of success in the early elections were lacking, the Brotherhood rejected the early election.
Revolutions and Militaries: Typically, in revolutions, there are two scenarios for the military-people interaction. Either the army starts the revolution and the people join it or the people start the revolution and the army supports and protects them. While the 25 January Revolution followed the first example, the 30 June Revolution offered a different case. There was no prior coordination between the army and the human tide. Back then, the army, represented by its Minister of Defense, General Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, called on the political actors to build consensus for the country to get out of this impasse and the danger threatening it, giving them a two-day period (48 hours) deadline (ending on 2 July) to end the polarization otherwise the army would intervene. Consensus could have been achieved but the subordinated presidential regime refused that any actor play a role in finding a way out of the crisis. As such, the army’s intervention was inevitable.
The Road Map and the Transitional Phase: Drawing up the road map started on 3 July with the statement of the revolution delivered by the Minister of Defense in the presence of representatives of the popular, religious, and military leaders. Then, pursuant to what the Constitution provided for, Counselor Adly Mansour, head of the Supreme Constitutional Court, assumed the presidency, and the transitional period moved in two parallel directions: 1) restoration of the Egyptian state and placing it on the right track, through drafting a new constitution by the Committee of Fifty Elders representing the wide spectrum of the Egyptian people headed by Amr Moussa the former Secretary-General of the Arab League and conducting several parliamentary and presidential entitlements that brought President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi to power with a popular will, whose winning reflected the people’s acceptance of the challenge and difficulties of rebuilding Egypt, a goal that El-Sisi promised to achieve when the Egyptian people asked him to run for the presidency and 2) starting confrontation and the war on terrorism with its proliferation in conjunction with the transitional period, a connection that has been confirmed by Brotherhood leader Muhammad Al-Beltagy who stated that terrorism will stop at the moment the former president returns. Now, terrorism is dramatically shrinking to a limited spot in Sinai adjacent to the Gaza Strip
The Start-Up Phase for Building Modern Egypt: The foundations of Modern Egypt were established during the transitional period, then the major breakthrough followed and is still continuing in all spheres of national security. Militarily, the army was strengthened on the premise that no development is possible without security. Politically, Egypt promoted its standing internationally, regionally, and in Africa and the Nile Basin after unjustifiable absence. Economically, various infrastructure have been established towards the industrial and agricultural advancements, along with connecting Sinai to the valley. Socially, the priority has been given to service sectors that benefit citizens and households, particularly the marginalized segment, with a focus on the elimination of slums.
Overall, the momentum will continue to mobilize the all-encompassing power of the state and support the state’s national security (which the 30 June Revolution established for) despite the various obstacles countering the State such as Covid-19 the repercussions of the Ukraine war.
*The author is an advisor to Nasser Higher Military Academy