Confronting Fascism in Egypt: Dictatorship versus Democracy by Israel Gershoni, James Jankowski

By Israel Gershoni, James Jankowski

Confronting Fascism in Egypt bargains a brand new studying of the political and highbrow tradition of Egypt through the interwar period. although scholarship has regularly emphasised Arab political and armed forces aid of Axis powers, this paintings unearths that the shapers of Egyptian public opinion have been mostly unreceptive to fascism, brazenly rejecting totalitarian rules and practices, Nazi racism, and Italy's and Germany's expansionist and imperialist agendas. the bulk (although now not all) of Egyptian voices supported liberal democracy opposed to the fascist problem, and so much Egyptians sought to enhance and reform, instead of to switch and smash, the prevailing constitutional and parliamentary system.The authors position Egyptian public discourse within the broader context of the advanced public sphere during which debate unfolded—in Egypt's huge and colourful community of day-by-day newspapers, in addition to the weekly or per month opinion journals—emphasizing the open, varied, and pluralistic nature of the interwar political and cultural enviornment. In interpreting Muslim perspectives of fascism in the meanwhile whilst classical fascism used to be at its height, this enlightening ebook heavily demanding situations the new assumption of an inherent Muslim predisposition towards authoritarianism, totalitarianism, and "Islamo-Fascism."

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98 This raising of the question of the definition of the constitutional powers of ministry versus monarchy was a foretaste of a debate that was to become increasingly salient in 1938–39, when the Wafd was out of office and the king and his allies dominated high politics. On the personal level, relations between Prime Minister Nahhas and King Faruq became increasingly embittered. ”102 In the end it was Nahhas, not Faruq, who went. 104 It marked the beginning of a period in which the Palace was the preeminent force in Egyptian politics.

The second force was the king (Fu ad to 1936; his son Faruq thereafter) and the monarchy’s political allies. Both Fu ad and Faruq wished to rule rather than merely reign. They did so in part through the significant political powers granted the monarchy in the Constitution of 1923, in part through the agency of what are conventionally described as “minority” parties, elitist groupings of nonWafdists or former Wafdists who were willing to ally with the monarch in order to gain ministerial office. The third actor was Great Britain, committed to preserving what it regarded as important imperial interests in Egypt.

132 The caliphal gambit clearly had domestic implications. ”136 The campaign to present Faruq as a claimant for the caliphate peaked from late 1938 to early 1939. 138 In January 1939, on the occasion of the ceremonial gathering at the Muhammad Ali Mosque of the Arab delegations on their way to London to attend the St. 141 Agitation suggesting the possibility of Faruq as caliph in early 1939 was accompanied by the king himself publicly asserting the need for a reorientation of political authority within Egypt itself.

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