Source: Council on Foreign Relations (originally published on
Author(s): Steven A. Cook
News broke earlier this week that Mohamed Morsi had died in an Egyptian courtroom. To some, the deposed president is now a martyred hero. To others, he was the personification of evil. Morsi was neither, of course. He was an apparatchik who led a bloc of Muslim Brotherhood lawmakers, technically elected as independents, in Egypt’s People’s Assembly during the late Hosni Mubarak period. That is it. Had the Muslim Brotherhood’s Deputy Supreme Guide Khairat al-Shater not been disqualified from running for president in 2012, few would have ever heard of Morsi. He had no achievements (though to be fair, he was up against powerful opponents), was not particularly wise, and demonstrated little commitment to democracy except in its illiberal, majoritarian form. If nothing else, his truncated presidency and death—of an apparent heart attack—underline Egypt’s abject and terminal mediocrity on the world stage.
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