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Egypt’s Substantive State Outside the Shell of Politics

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While the rest of the world continues to focus on the Egypt that is bogged down in a quagmire of political disintegration, I choose to focus on the parts of Egypt that remain and continue to function throughout, not in a sedentary fashion, but in a stabilising state-building fashion.

At this point, when the political discourse is so damaged and bruised that optimistic suggestions of reform etc will be blown away on the collective exhale of held breath, we must look to the other side of the equation too: the side that constitutes the State away from politics. This might seem like a foreign concept to many, and certainly in formal terms the definition of a ‘State’ is not settled; but in simple terms, and in Egyptian terms, the State is far more, in fact is spectacularly more, than mere government and its bureaucracy.

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People OF Egypt, Save Egypt: Everyone else, keep yourself in check

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As I write this there are reports of Muslim Brotherhood supportive militias armed and shooting from bridges at the Egyptian Security Forces etc etc. All news. All events actually happening. Yet I am also sitting with headphones on listening to music and writing this on my laptop in my flat in central Cairo – this is also actually happening.

How can these be reconciled?

To me the answer has been clear from the start. They can’t.

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