Islamicism divides Egyptians
Egyptians are deeply skeptical about the United States and its role in their country, but they are also divided in their attitudes about Islamic fundamentalists, according a poll released Monday by the Pew Global Attitudes Project.world Updated: Apr 27, 2011 00:44 IST
Egyptians are deeply skeptical about the United States and its role in their country, but they are also divided in their attitudes about Islamic fundamentalists, according a poll released Monday by the Pew Global Attitudes Project.
Most Egyptians distrust the US and want to renegotiate their peace treaty with Israel, the poll found. But only 31% say they sympathise with fundamentalists, while 30% say they sympathise with those who disagree with fundamentalists. An additional 26% said they had mixed views.
The poll is the first comprehensive look at attitudes of Egyptians since protests forced President Hosni Mubarak to end his 30-year reign in February.
The numbers reveal a society that overwhelmingly agrees that Mubarak was bad for the country but is divided about what the future should look like. Although 75% were positive about the Muslim Brotherhood, which was officially banned under Mubarak and is now the strongest political organisation in the country, almost as many - 70% - felt positively about the youth-based April 6 movement that was mostly secular and was one of the key organisers of the protests.
A majority of the country wants Egypt's laws to strictly follow the Quran - 62% - and even among those who disagree with Islamic fundamentalists, the number only drops to 47%.
The April 6 youth organisers have struggled to determine how best to translate their successes into influence in the political future of the country.
The Muslim Brotherhood, on the other hand, benefits from a preexisting political organisation in a country that has few of them.
(In association with The Washington Post. For additional content from The Washington Post, visit www.washingtonpost.com)