Copts' Views of Morsi's Victory
Just as I predicted over a year ago, Islamists have won in Egypt, for the Muslim Brotherhood is an Islamist organization and will strive to institute sharia. Here was my first prediction:
If the protests bring down the Egyptian government, the Islamists will almost certainly take control. See FPRI's Barry Rubin on EGYPT: What the U.S. Should Do.Here were my second and third predictions, and all three were over a year ago. I seem to have gotten the future right, more or less, and it doesn't bode well for the Copts, several of whom were recently quoted in an article by Jayson Casper, "What Egyptian Christians Think About Their New Islamist President" (Christianity Today, June 25, 2012):
[D]uring his victory speech Morsy sought to assuage the fears of the Copts. "We as Egyptians, Muslims and Christians . . . will face together the strife and conspiracies that target our national unity," he said. "We are all equal in rights, and we all have duties towards this homeland." Morsy even proceeded to resign from the Brotherhood following his victory speech.If this trend toward Islamist triumphalism continues, we can expect Christianity to disappear from Egypt much as it has been disappearing from Iraq and other Middle Eastern countries.
Some Copts are not convinced, instead believing the country has been slowly but surely manipulated into Islamist rule.
"We will be quiet now and wait and see," said Nader Wanis, who directs a cultural center in Alexandria. "Some Copts will immediately start to advocate for our rights, but in vain. Muslims are very deceiving; they speak as if they are for human rights but they will give us nothing."
Many expect the worst. "Morsy's win produces many fears for Copts, because he will establish a religious state and is against citizenship," said Nader Shukry of the Maspero Youth Union, a human and Coptic rights organization formed following the post-revolution attacks on churches. "Copts fear we will be isolated from high positions in government and society even worse than we were under Mubarak."
Most nervous are Copts along the Nile River in southern Egypt -- known as Upper Egypt -- whose small communities are often caught between the vagaries of rumor-filled media manipulations. One report circulating from the area, unable to be independently verified, depicts local Islamists as gathering in front of a church and firing celebratory gunfire into the air.