Egyptian President Mohamed Morsy – who was sworn into office only six weeks ago – has successfully forced Field Marshal Hussein Tantawi, Defence Minister and Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces and the Chief of Staff, Sami Anan, into retirement.
This stunning and unprecedented move has surprised Egyptians and Middle East analysts alike. Just weeks ago, Tantawi and his elite inner circle showed now signs of conceding power. In June the military issued a decree to dissolve Egypt’s Islamist-led parliament and suspended the constitution.
Why the sudden and drastic change?
President Morsy and the Muslim Brotherhood have been waiting for an opportunity to flex their muscle and exert more influence. Last week’s horrific terrorist attack in Sinai in which Islamists killed sixteen Egyptian soldiers provided Morsy the perfect justification, especially after it was revealed that Egyptian intelligence knew such an attack could occur but ignored the warnings.
Stay tuned as these events continue to unfold.