There is something about the military coup in Egypt and the ongoing travails of that country that brings out whatever racist and Islamophobic filth lurks in the recesses of what passes for minds among United States right-wingers.
Here's the Wall Street Journal:
My emphasis. Apparently the Journal is enthusiastic about torturing military thugs. The Chilean "transition" only came after Pinochet had held dictatorial power for 17 years and finally, to his surprise, found himself on the wrong end of a sham national vote he expected to win. Even the military was tired of him and democracy was very slowly rebuilt. (The Journal article is behind a paywall, so I've linked to a commentator far more knowledgeable than I who quotes the statement.)
Meanwhile, in the New York Times the conservative columnist David Brooks seized on the occasion of the Egyptian coup to express his essential contempt for the capacity of brown people, Arab people, who adhere to a "foreign" religion.
Mr. Brooks sure doesn't convince me with this tripe that he has particular brains or powers of observation -- all he seems to have is bigotry about an ancient nation whose citizens are struggling messily toward their own system.
I don't pretend to much idea what is going on in Egypt. But I do know that citizens of this country forget our own history if we demand that other people who are just trying to get a free country off the ground after a long siege of foreign rule and oppression will pull this off without some bumpy bits. Consider this trajectory:
- a rebellious people forms a new representative government and within a decade finds that internal disagreements and populist risings in the countryside have rendered it unworkable;
- the elected powers-that-be call for a meeting to reform that government structure, but some radical intellectuals secretly plot to replace the existing structure with an entirely new governing arrangement;
- those plotters persuade a retired general to lend his presence to the secretive convening and emerge with an entirely new document;
- once that document is ratified, the general becomes the country's new head of state.
Getting a new country off the ground is hard, dicey work. Racist foreign pundits reveal their ugly ignorance when they try to make sense of events through the lens of their fetid prejudices.