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Debates about Egypt on The Economist.com

Before we delve into our debate, a quick look at what is happening in Egypt. The violence that broke out between pro- and anti-government supporters at the end of last week seems to have subsided, for the time being. Opposition groups, including the Muslim Brotherhood, have met with members of Hosni Mubarak’s government to try to negotiate some kind of end to the unrest that has brought Egypt to a standstill. No settlement has been agreed yet, but Anoush Ehteshami was right to predict the move towards negotiations.

Anoush Ehteshami

Defending the motion
Anoush Ehteshami  
Professor, Durham University and Joint Director, Centre for the Advanced Study of the Arab World
What the Arabs put in place of their dictators will not be identical to our systems—rightly so—but being different will not make them any less democratic. No democracies look or feel alike and in Egypt we are likely to see the birth of yet another new ideal-type derivative.

Daniel Pipes
Against the motion
Daniel Pipes  
Director, Middle East Forum and Taube distinguished visiting fellow, Hoover Institution, Stanford
Anoush Ehteshami ought not to have taken on the assignment of arguing “that Egypt will become a democracy within a year” because, in fact, he shares my scepticism about full political participation emerging there in so brief a time.

Read more of these Economist Debates: Egypt: Statements.

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