Project Wonderful

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Out of the Frying Pan?

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This video is a pretty good primer on last week's Egyptian election. One thing they don't cover is that, for infrastructure reasons, the country is voting in three waves, divided geographically, so although it was an election to national parliament, the national election is not over. As predicted, the Muslim Brotherhood, an anti-Israel, sometimes anti-American, Islamist party took the most votes. Some protesters boycotted the elections saying that the military still held too much power, and that parties other than the Muslim Brotherhood had not had enough time to organize.

That's always a paradox that many Westerners don't consider in holding an election: Just because a country transitions from dictatorship to democracy, does not mean that it will necessarily share our values, which we saw as a concern during the Arab Spring. Moreover, the more democratic a state, the more free and fair its elections will be, but to be a true democracy, a country has to have had free and fair elections. At some point, you just have to hold the best election you can.

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