Egypt's Morsi Incompetent, Not Authoritarian

By Nader Habibi, on , Briefing

After several weeks of intense and occasionally violent protests, Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi on Saturday finally rescinded a decree that had given him extrajudicial powers. Protesters had filled Tahrir Square in response to the decree, with some carrying banners equating Morsi with his dictatorial predecessor, Hosni Mubarak. But by caving in to the protesters, Morsi showed that his main failing is incompetence rather than authoritarianism.  

In fact, this is the second time in two months that Morsi has felt compelled to reverse a major policy announcement in the face of public opposition. In early October, the president announced a plan to have shops and restaurants close by 10 p.m. as a way to conserve energy by reducing nighttime electricity consumption. Even before it was implemented, the plan drew considerable opposition from businesses and consumers, prompting the government to scrap it. ...

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