Judith Miller, writing on the Fox News website, offers one of the best evaluations I’ve seen on the meaning of the Egyptian presidential elections. Miller is a top journalist and her report is filed from Cairo. Read it here. The following paragraph posits the different candidates’ differences:
The two candidates who won the largest number of votes and now face a run-off in mid-June represent two traditional power centers that have battled each other for decades – ousted President Hosni Mubarak’s once omnipotent “secular” security regime that has ruled Egypt since 1952, and the Muslim Brotherhood, the 84-year-old organization that has struggled under-and-above ground to turn Egypt into an Islamic state.
Here is her conclusion, but read the whole article:
Analysts said that the coming weeks would see deals and rumors of deals allegedly made between the two competitors and those whose support each was seeking. Maged Atef, a politically well-connected tour guide who helped several foreign journalists cover the elections, called the outcome of the presidential contest’s first round ironic. “With the country split roughly evenly between those who support the Brotherhood and those who support the feloul, or left-overs of the old regime,” he said, “those who despise both candidates– who would like to vote for ‘none of the above’ as president– may well wind up deciding which of the men they love to hate wins.”