Lost Capital: The Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood’s Neoliberal Transformation

Source: Carnegie

Author(s): Wael Gamal

Original Link: http://carnegie-mec.org/2019/02/01/lost-capital-egyptian-muslim-brotherhood-s-neoliberal-transformation-pub-78271

In an October 2011 interviewHassan Malek, a leading Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood businessman, emphasized that the Islamist group was friendly to business. Its main problem with the economic policies of former president Hosni Mubarak, he said, was not the policies themselves but the corruption of businessmen close to the regime. The Brotherhood’s year in power, between 2012 and 2013 under then president Mohamed Morsi, confirmed that neoliberal market orthodoxy was at the heart of the group’s economic program. Indeed, the Brotherhood had embraced neoliberalism during the decades prior to 2011, in line with the shift toward neoliberalism of Egypt’s governing elites. The policies of Morsi and his government revealed their inability to break out of that mold, perpetuating a crisis of leadership that started under Mubarak and reflecting a failure to address public dissatisfaction with social and economic conditions. This helped undermine Morsi, ultimately facilitating his removal from office in July 2013, which led to the imprisonment of thousands of members of the Muslim Brotherhood and devastated its organizational structure.

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