Stormy Egypt’s Peacemaker Menaces Coptic Christians

For about ten percent of Egypt’s population, more than 8 million Coptic Christians, the Arab Spring is setting off alarms, not optimistic opportunities for a more liberated and devout society. The emergent top dog in elections is a poorly mixed bag for them.

Stormy Egypt’s Peacemaker Menaces Coptic Christians

Ambassador Dennis Ross - photo Russ Imrie

Ambassador Dennis Ross - photo Russ Imrie

At: Elliot School of International Affairs Institute for Security and Conflict Studies forum – Challenges Ahead: America and the Middle East

For about ten percent of Egypt’s population, more than 8 million Coptic Christians, the Arab Spring is setting off alarms, not optimistic opportunities for a more liberated and devout society. The emergent top dog in elections is a mixed bag.

The newly politically dominant Muslim Brotherhood is not the Mubarak regime, which treated the Copts with a metered tolerance. While the Brotherhood has developed a pragmatism that could conceivably accommodate a large Christian minority with robust citizenship rights, its present mandate requires it to promptly deliver security, economic improvements, and a vital religious environment for the Moslem majority. Above all, organizational stability and accountability are paramount for attracting investment, critical for the nation’s ailing economy. Arguments about implementing Western ideals of tolerance, religious and gender, have zero to no leverage ar this point, they’re a distraction.

Meanwhile, expat Copts and supporters work to garner support in Washington D.C. out of concern that oppression of the community in Egypt will get out of control.

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