Egypt

Egypt 1945-1990: Politics and Society by Derek Hopwood

By Derek Hopwood

Up to date version of a profitable introductory textbook - themes lined contain the ideologies of Nasser and Sadat; fiscal difficulties; the position of Islam; Egyptian tradition and literature.

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Sample text

This ‘internal’ imperialism spread moral defeat and diverted Egyptians from their traditional faith.  At its peak it had about 2,000 branches with a membership of some 500,000.  These two were the movements which some Egyptians hoped would create a new Egypt, cleansed of foreigners and corruption, and a more just Islamic society.  In the tense atmosphere of the time such events were almost daily occurrences which became less frequent only when examinations were approaching.  By 1952, however, the various communist groups claimed several thousand members.

The Cold War of the time was not a struggle in which they were interested, and they would never be convinced that the presence of foreign troops Page 30 could be anything other than ‘a sort of occupation and incomplete sovereignty’. In August the British Ambassador, Sir Ralph Stevenson, continued talks in which he stressed that Britain could never run the risk of the Suez Canal being closed.  The talks collapsed and in October Nahhas put before parliament decrees abrogating unilaterally the Anglo­Egyptian Treaty and proclaiming Farouk King of Egypt and Sudan.

The assumption that ‘true’ Egyptians needed British friendship and that opposition came only from a handful of ‘troublemakers’ misled the British reader.  In September/October an outbreak of cholera was even blamed on the British for lax quarantine and for using outdated vaccine.  There is still a common conviction that the European powers destroyed the natural basis for unity by occupation and the imposition of mandates, treaties and boundaries.  Egypt fully backed this decision, yet was in no position to face its consequences.

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