Egyptian political leader’s plea to America: Help!

Eric Shawn reports on terrorist attacks


U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry will soon decide whether to release the full $1.5 billion military aid package Washington provides Egypt each year.

The funds were partly rescinded to protest the ouster last year of Islamist President Mohammed Morsi, a leader of the Muslim Brotherhood, by the military. But with presidential elections next month, a smooth transition in Cairo may give the Obama administration the reason it needs to completely restore the traditional funding.

"The American government should help Egypt," says Dr. Mohammed Aboulghar, head of the Egyptian Social Democratic Party, one of the new political parties formed after the 2011 revolution that toppled then-President Hosni Mubarak.

The rapid changes in Egypt turned Aboulghar, a mild-mannered, 73-year –old, into a significant political activist.

He told Fox News that his nation needs America’s assistance now perhaps more than any other time in recent history.

"We are in danger. We want democracy, we want real democracy, and democracy should always be persuaded through peaceful means and not through weapons and bombs."

Aboulghar fears that without steadfast American support, Muslim Brotherhood militants and radical Islamists will continue to resort to the type of violence that has long marked Egypt’s history, from being behind the 1981 assassination of Egyptian President Anwar Sadat to the current killings of police officers and suicide attacks on civilians.

Egyptian General Abdul-Fatah el-Sisi, who deposed Morsi in July, resigned his post last month to run as a civilian in the presidential election at the end of May and is widely expected to win.

Aboulghar believes that with the upcoming elections, his nation is now at a turning point in fighting terrorism and Morsi's now-outlawed Muslim Brotherhood supporters.

"I'd like Washington to support the Egyptian people and the Egyptian army to get rid of the terrorists," he says. "The American people should support democracy in Egypt and help us to be more democratic, and don't help and support the undemocratic forces."

The recent violence has led to a crackdown against Islamists, including the controversial mass death sentences handed out by a court verdict to 529 Muslim Brotherhood supporters last month.

"They are a fascist group of people," says Aboulghar. "We need urgent military intelligence for Sinai, we need to keep the Suez Canal safe."

He believes that had the Muslim Brotherhood and other Islamists remained in power, the future of Egypt would have eventually echoed that of Nazi Germany's.

"Hitler was elected democratically and in a few years the Nazis occupied the whole country and destroyed the whole of Europe in a long war. If the Egyptians did not move immediately, something similar would have happened in Egypt."

Critics have accused the new military-backed government of being a dictatorship that instituted a coup by removing Morsi, who was the nation's first democratically elected civilian leader.

The White House refused to brand the military's move against Morsi as such. This has raised concerns that the elections, to be held on May 26 and 27, will not be fair.

Aboulghar, who was a member of the Committee of 50 that rejected the Islamist-backed constitution, points to the successful January referendum in which more than 20 million people voted to install the new constitution, as proof, he says, that the upcoming elections will be run properly.

"The elections are monitored by the European Union and by many American NGO's (non-governmental agencies) such as the Carter Center, and they did monitor the referendum and said it was okay. We will not accept irregularities in the coming elections, and we will be the first ones to oppose the outcome of the elections if there are any irregularities. General el-Sisi… will run as a civilian, as Eisenhower ran as a civilian after the Second World War and no one said the army was running America."

After the turmoil of the past three years, first ushered in by the mass demonstrations against Mubarak at Tahrir Square in January of 2011, Aboulghar is confident that his ancient and proud nation is about to enter a new democratic era.

"We know there is always different forms of turmoil after any revolution, and now Egypt will settle down and I am sure will go on the right road."

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