Egypt's Morsi Replaces Military Chiefs in Bid to Consolidate Power

(Washington Post) Ernesto Londono - Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi on Sunday forced out Field Marshal Mohammed Hussein Tantawi - the defense minister and top military chief - and his deputy, army chief of staff Sami Anan, suggesting that the Muslim Brotherhood is willing to act more quickly and assertively in taking control of key institutions than analysts had predicted. The president also announced that he had suspended a constitutional amendment the generals passed on the eve of Morsi's election giving themselves vast powers and weakening the presidency. "Now, officially, it is a Brotherhood state," said Zeinab Abul-Magd, a history professor at the American University in Cairo. "Now it is official they are in full control of state institutions." Tantawi's removal sidelines a longtime U.S. interlocutor in a country that has received tens of billions of dollars in military aid in exchange for maintaining peace with Israel. Morsi appointed Gen. Abdel Fattah al-Sissi as defense minister and commander of the armed forces, replacing Tantawi. Sissi served as head of military intelligence and as a member of the supreme military council.

2012-08-13 00:00:00

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