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Muslim Brotherhood Lacks The Patience Of Turkish AKP Party

It is a good thing that the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt is showing its true colors, rather than emulating Turkey, which fooled the West.
By Amiel Ungar
First Publish: 10/14/2012, 3:44 PM

Fiery demonstration
Fiery demonstration
Reuters

While Egypt and Turkey are united on the Syrian issue, Egypt has pushed back against the Turkish AKP that wanted to teach the Egyptians how to establish a successful and enduring Muslim regime. These offers have been rebuffed because Arabs refuse to be tutored by Turks.

What characterized the rule of the Turkish Justice and Development party (AKP ) was its gradualist approach to consolidating power. During its first term, the party tried to project an aura of moderation. This helped mislead President George W. Bush and his successor Barack Obama, who salivated over the prospects of a moderate Islamic government whose example could be propagated through the entire Muslim world. Once it had gotten two terms under its belt, the AKP began showing the Army and the judiciary who was the boss and instituting a more Islamist policy.

The clashes in Cairo's Tahrir Square between the Muslim Brotherhood supporters and liberal Egyptians are an example that the Turkish model has not been embraced.

Muslim demonstrators simply destroyed a stage that had been set up for the liberal elements and pelted them with stones. 120 were wounded. Realizing how bad the reports were for its image, the Muslim Brotherhood quickly distanced itself from the thugs who had attacked the liberals - but the damage was done.

The call for a jihad against Israel to liberate Jerusalem, issued by the supreme Muslim Brotherhood Guide Mohammed Badie, and laced with gutter anti-Semitism, was also politically premature.

Egypt's behavior will not help to endow the country with a business-friendly image and some US congressmen, even before the events of this weekend, were calling for cuts in aid to Egypt.

The Muslim Brotherhood will be expected to demonstrate economic success and Egypt's president Mohammed Morsi is trying to roll out the red carpet for investors, but he has to keep his own followers from providing a distraction. One of the keys to the AKP's political success, it should be recalled, in Turkey was the country's stellar economic growth rate.

In fairness to the Muslim Brotherhood, it developed in a climate of political dictatorship, while postwar Turkey was characterized by more competitive politics. This allowed AKP politicians to hone political skills and sensitivities that the Muslim Brotherhood  lacks.