Redirection of U.S. democracy assistance in Egypt is raising questions about the Obama administration's interest in democracy promotion.
Contentious leadership elections and recent arrests of major figures are testing Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood, which might face internal splits and be less able to play a leadership role among Islamist organizations.
Former IAEA Chief ElBaradei's criticism of Egypt's electoral process has awakened hopes for ending the country's political stagnation.
The Muslim Brotherhood is facing one of the most challenging periods in its history, as it must settle conservative-reformist disputes and elect a new Guide while undergoing a crackdown by Egyptian authorities.
Real estate tax collectors recently took the unprecedented step of establishing an employees' union independent of government control; Egyptian authorities' response will set the tone for what are likely to be ongoing struggles between labor and the government.
The Egyptian government decision to slaughter all pigs to avoid the spread of the H1N1 virus is part of a much broader plan that is disadvantaging poor Copts and Muslims alike.
The economic reform program pursued by Prime Minister Nazif for the last five years is now in serious jeopardy.
Muslim Brotherhood activists are already arguing about whether to run in Egypt's next parliamentary elections, while the organization faces a leadership transition. Meanwhile, observers doubt the government will tolerate the level of Brotherhood participation seen in 2005.
Hamas has faced pressures to recognize Israel and give up "resistance" since its 2006 election, and such issues are at the heart of the Fatah/Hamas talks in Cairo. Egypt wants to keep the pressure up on Hamas, but also wants the talks to succeed. Which way will Hamas go?
Initiatives by the National Democratic Party to revise personal status laws and institute a quota for women in parliament have the potential to bring about significant changes in women's rights.
Islamist and secularist thinkers are expressing concern about the rise of a more radical form of Islamist thought.
As the Egyptian government prepares to revise its NGO law, restricting foreign funding appears to be a top priority.
A new plan to privatize state enterprises and distribute shares to citizens reflects little awareness of the problems of mass privatization.
The impending selection of a new president will have profound implications for democracy prospects in Egypt and throughout the region; will the administration of President-elect Obama take advantage of the opportunity?
Repentant jihadists—former Islamic militants who won release from prison by explicitly renouncing violence and other extremist ideas—have become a topic of political debate in Egypt and provoke varying reactions, most of them negative. In addition to the question of whether they might resume the use of violence, the changing nature of religiosity in Egypt affects the jihadists’ current relevance.
With the Egyptian People's Assembly's June 16, 2003 approval of legislation to create a National Council for Human Rights (NCHR), Egypt has become the latest Arab government to establish a state council to advance human rights. Morocco, Tunisia, and Algeria formed such councils in the early 1990s, Yemen in 1997, Jordan in 2000, and Qatar in May 2003.
At the first annual conference of Egypt's ruling National Democratic Party (NDP), held in Cairo from September 26 to 28, President Hosni Mubarak and his son Gamal tried to give the impression that an end to autocratic rule in Egypt is at hand. Forty-year-old Gamal heads the NDP's influential policy secretariat and many believe he is being groomed to inherit his father's presidential seat.
Is America serious about democracy and political reform in the Arab world? Does the neo-Wilsonian dimension of the Bush administration's policy toward the region presage a decisive departure from the longstanding realist policy of "regime maintenance"?
Anyone who believes that U.S. President George Bush is succeeding in Iraq can believe that Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak is undertaking reform in Egypt; but neither is happening in reality. Constitutional amendments in Egypt, intended to burnish the state's democratic image, have instead made it a laughingstock.