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New Poll: Little support for Muslim Brotherhood Takeover in Egypt

Poll: No constituency for Muslim Brotherhood takeover in Egypt
By Adam Serwer
Washingon Post

Fears that the protests in Egypt would lead to an Islamist takeover have been a point of convergence for the regime of embattled Egyptian ruler Hosni Mubarak and some on the American right. While the feud between Glenn Beck and Bill Kristol is less about connecting the left to radical Islam than when to do so and how crazy to sound when you do it, Kristol and his allies are at least correct in characterizing Beck's fears as overblown.

A new poll of Egyptians commissioned by the Washington Institute on Near East Policy suggests that the Muslim Brotherhood isn't anywhere near as popular as either Mubarak or paranoid conservatives believe them to be.

This 
is
 not 
an 
Islamic 
uprising. 
The 
Muslim 
Brotherhood 
is 
"approved"
by
 just 
15%, 
and 
its 
leaders 
get
 barely 1%
 in
 a 
presidential 
straw
 vote. 
Asked 
to
 pick
 national
 priorities, 
just
 12% 
choose 
shariah 
over
 national 
power, democracy,
or
 economic 
development. 
Asked
 to 
explain
 the 
uprising, 
economic
 conditions,
corruption,
and unemployment 
(30‐40% 
each) 
far
 outpace 
"regime
 not 
Islamic 
enough" 
(7%).

Surprisingly, 
asked 
two
 different 
ways
 about 
the
 peace 
treaty 
with 
Israel,
 more
 support
 it 
(37%)
 than
 oppose it 
(22%). 
Only 
18% 
approve
 of
 either 
Hamas 
or 
Iran. 
And 
a
 mere 
5% 
say 
the 
uprising
 occurred 
because
 the regime 
is 
"too
 pro-Israel."

The usual caveats about extrapolating too much from a single data point, particularly given the small sample size, apply. I think its also fair to question how comfortable Egyptians might be in speaking frankly about their political views, especially about a group targeted by the regime as much as the MB has been.

This poll though, merely reinforces what has already been reported -- the protests are not being driven by Islamist groups, and they are driven by underlying economic issues and anger with Egypt's repressive government rather than a widespread desire to replace the Mubarak regime with an Islamist theocracy. While it's too early to know how this will all play out, the argument that a transition to democracy in Egypt will lead to an Islamist takeover doesn't seem to hold much water.


By Adam Serwer | February 10, 2011; 8:14 AM ET


Click to view image: '248e655d9ad2-khomeini.png'

Added: Feb-10-2011 
By: ElegantDecline
In:
Iran, Middle East
Tags: Egypt, Democracy, Tyranny
Views: 7878 | Comments: 22 | Votes: 1 | Favorites: 0 | Shared: 0 | Updates: 0 | Times used in channels: 1
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