"......The Egyptian democratic transition that was set in motion in January 2011 failed to unfold smoothly and reach the stable condition of a relegitimized democratic and pluralistic governance system that defined and affirmed those three phenomena. It allowed the Muslim Brotherhood to dominate and then monopolize the power structure.
They abused their thin mandate crudely, and sparked a massive counter-revolution, leading to this week’s removal of Mursi by a combination of massive street protests and emphatic intervention by the armed forces, keeping us ignorant of the true will of the majority in Egypt......
The citizenry is re-energized with the knowledge that its peaceful expression of its discontents on the streets continues to have force and bring about historic changes. The Muslim Brotherhood and other Islamists are humbled by the realization that their divine confidence is not enough to perpetuate their incumbency. Rather, they know that they have to govern well and act pluralistically to stay in power. The armed forces are also held in check to a large extent by the power of the populist legitimacy unleashed in the streets in January 2011 and again in June 2013. The armed forces sought, and needed, the endorsement of religious and civilian figures when they removed Mursi from office this week, but they felt no need for non-military Egyptians to stand with them when they assumed power 30 months ago.
Most significantly, in my view, the youth-led Tamarod movement that organized and mobilized for the June 30 demonstrations that ultimately triggered the end of Mursi’s presidency has learned important lessons about how to engage politically. These lessons will be crucial for when Egyptians engage constitutionally and electorally in the months ahead.
It is a mistake to judge the Egyptian military or any other of the key actors according to the rules of 1952 or 2009 or even January 2011. In Egypt, 2013 is close to the equivalent of 1789 in the United States, with new understandings of political efficacy, new appreciations for real populist constraints, and new sophistication in putting the two together to achieve the revolutionary promise of previous years."