When Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak was thrown from the palace in early 2011, the country turned into a three-sided ideological battleground between Islamists, liberals and leftists, and the military. The liberals and leftists were shown up as irrelevant last year when the Muslim Brotherhood and the totalitarian Salafists together won two-thirds of the parliamentary vote, and again when the Muslim Brotherhood’s Mohamed Morsi was elected president in June of this year.
The field was then whittled down to only two factions, and it looked for a while like the army would win. The Supreme Council of the Armed Forces stripped the presidency of much of its power before Morsi took office, which made the Islamists appear hardly any more relevant than the liberals and leftists who spent much of last year camped out in Tahrir Square.
But Morsi and his comrades in the Brotherhood now appear to be winning.