Mustafa Salama

31 Articles

Mustafa Salama is a Political Researcher and a Freelance Journalist. He has an extensive academic background on Islamist movements and Middle East Affairs. Salama holds a Bachelors and Masters Degree in Political Science from the American University in Cairo.

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Latest by Mustafa Salama

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Mali: a serving of ‘Freedom Fries’

French intervention in Mali is motivated by economic rather than democratic concerns In 2003, the Bush administration justified the invasion of Iraq on the grounds that Saddam Hussein had ties with Al-Qaeda and possessed weapons of mass destruction. Bush named the invasion ‘Operation Iraqi Freedom’, claiming that he wanted democracy for Iraq. The French administration …

Mustafa Salama

Islamists, Tourism and Media

Speaking with an EU parliamentarian I was surprised by their parting question, which was; “is it true that Salafis want to destroy the pyramids? I heard that a Salafi appeared on TV saying he wants to destroy the pyramids.” I was indeed surprised, that such a non-representative interview produced for shock value and media consumption …

Mustafa Salama

Post Bashar Syria: Local, Global and Regional Players.

The United States has probably started on the bad side of Syria by putting “Al-Nusrah Front” on the list of terrorist organisations. There are legitimate fears and concerns that neighbouring countries and the west have over the destabilisation of an already volatile region. However, insisting on delegitimizing Al-Nusrah will only complicate matters worse. The world …

Mustafa Salama

Contesting Egypt and de-contextualising narratives

Watch western TV news features on Egypt; you will find an almost identical discourse that de-contextualises current events. It always emphasises President Morsy’s declaration that gave him unmatched powers and fomented outrage, and that’s it. Morsy’s constitutional declaration was obviously met with some reservations from his closest people, which include his deputy, assistants, consultants and …

Mustafa Salama

Middle East and the global chess game

The aftermath of the Arab Spring has not ceased. It is not clear what the region will settle for or how long this process will take. Many academic scholars prior to the outbreak of the Arab Spring questioned if there was a “democratic transition” at all. They assumed that these “survivalist” regimes were in a …

Mustafa Salama

Morsy strikes Mubarak cronies and liberals

Despite the western impression of Egyptians rejecting President Morsy’s constitutional declaration, the majority of Egyptians actually support it. The declaration looks to make the revolution “immune”, as the Constituent Assembly and the Shura Council become temporarily inviolable. The decision is supposed to protect the transitional period from falling back into the hands of the deep …

Mustafa Salama

Hamas: the legitimacy of resistance

Once again as Israeli elections come closer, Israel politically campaigns by attacking Gaza, this time killing the head of Al-Qassam Brigades’ Ahmad Al-Jabari who was a popular and respected figure in the Gaza Strip. By this move that killed three Palestinians, Israel has breached the cease-fire that was sponsored by Egypt. The Zionist state has …

Mustafa Salama

Liberals vs Salafis: The fight to contain the Muslim Brotherhood ?

Power comes with great responsibilities, especially when Egypt is in such a devastated state. It is easy to criticise and rightfully do so. Critique, which is not constructive, nor aims to contribute to better governmental performance, is just a waste of time. The ongoing debate on the identity of Egypt and how Islam will play …

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Kuwait hit by Arab spring

The Arab world was taken by surprise when 150,000 or so Kuwaitis took the small country’s streets in protest on 21 October. The protest was mobilised against a new electoral law designed to reduce opposition, which was passed by the emir without parliamentary approval (as parliament was dissolved). The Kuwaiti political experience is regionally exceptional …

Mustafa Salama

The Angry “Liberal”?

In any ideological struggle or clash of discourses original ideas may not necessarily hold water.

Mustafa Salama

The Future of Egyptian American Relations ?

Egypt still remains the cornerstone of American foreign policy in the Middle East. The relationship now seems to be going through somewhat turbulent and tense times, however the overall relations have not seriously departed from the previous norms of the Mubarak era. Though this is the case now, the future is still unclear. Currently the …

Mustafa Salama

Egypt: authenticity, Islamists and liberals

Authenticity is a trait that almost all politicians like to claim one way or another. Whether it is an American presidential incumbent speaking of how he stands for real American values versus his opponent or here in Egypt where a liberal may speak of an Islamist’s lack of Egyptian authenticity by reasoning that Islamist ideas …

Mustafa Salama

The Islamic civilization quest

As Islamic discourses become mainstream in several Muslim countries, one wonders what is there to make out of it? After all practically all modern Islamic movements came about with the objective of reviving an Islamic society, polity or both. The Islamist movement as a whole has come a long way since the demise of the …

Mustafa Salama

Protesting Blasphemy or Foreign Policy?

For the most part media has portrayed the protests in front of American embassies as just as a protest over the amateur video insulting Islam and prophet Muhammad peace and blessings be upon him. Moreover, it is surprising how some media outlets choose to describe the regions where the outrage occurred as the “Middle East”, …

Mustafa Salama

Morsy a catalyst for a new global political system?

The current international political system is the result of dominant power relations between the biggest nations and also the smaller ones. The way the UN is managed, global trade is conducted, and security issues are settled are all created by man, as is the UN veto system. Therefore, they are not everlasting, unquestionable formalities and …

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Iran and Egypt: New Friends?

One who follows Iranian movements in Egypt will know that Iran is very desperate to have positive diplomatic relations with Egypt

Mustafa Salama

Egypt: Military in Transition?

Morsy’s choice of Sedki to hold this position shows a departure from being overly sensitive to Washington

Mustafa Salama

Morsy strikes with a vengeance

While many used to compare Egypt to Turkey decades ago, Morsy did in a matter of days what took Erdogan years

Mustafa Salama

On Secularism and Islam in Egypt

Among many secular liberalists lies a contradiction when it comes to raising Islam in debates concerning political or civil affairs. For example there is the common complaint that preachers have become very harsh or that Islamists are supposedly negating the tolerant and merciful side of Islam, but simultaneously they claim that Islam should remain more …


A New Arab World: local, regional and international transformations

Essam Al-Eryan, a leading Muslim Brotherhood figure who also heads the Committee of Foreign Relations in the post-revolution parliament wrote on his twitter account: “Democracy, free elections, and peaceful transition of power, will change the map of the region and end Sykes Picot. The Arab citizen has become the decision maker, and Islam is the …

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Why is Morsy busy traveling?

Domestic politics are still ongoing and can be managed temporarily without Morsy. On the foreign front, however, and for the time being, the president is needed to consolidate Egypt post- revolution

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Egypt: Major Challenges Ahead

The moment of announcing Morsi as president was an extraordinary moment for Egyptians. Tahrir was screaming and crying in joy and celebrations did not stop during the night. Pleasure expressed was not limited to Egypt; especially in Gaza that has suffered a lot as a result of Mubarak’s policies. The streets of Gaza witnessed similar scenes …