The New Left youth movements led a powerful charge against Thursday’s presidential decree by Muhammad Mursi of the Muslim Brotherhood’s civil wing, the Freedom and Justice Party. Protests were held at some scale in 8 governorates.
The Egyptian religious Right (the Muslim Brotherhood) and the secular liberals and leftists had been allies in overthrowing Hosni Mubark in Jan.-Feb. 2011. That alliance frayed once the Brotherhood won the presidency last June, but the rhetoric of unity had continued. Morsi’s high-handed executive orders on Thursday has decisively split the religious and secular wings of the revolution, who now confront one another. Asma Mahfouz of April 6 tweeted that Morsi was taking the country to civil war. Even some figures on the religious right, such as Wael Ghoneim (formerly the head of Google in Egypt), broke with the Brotherhood over these decrees. Ghoneim was quoted as saying that “The revolution was not made in search of another dictator.”