According to NBC News’ sources in the Mohammed Morsi administration, a military coup is underway in Egypt. An advisor to Morsi told NBC News that tanks were moving outside Cairo and that Morsi’s communications had been cut and the president had been isolated. That cutoff came hours after the military’s vague ultimatum to Morsi to step down passed, with crowds celebrating in Tahrir Square. The Muslim Brotherhood reports that its members have been imprisoned by the military.
Military leader Gen. Abdel Fattah al-Sisi said on Tuesday that he would die to prevent the people from threats or terror; Morsi said he would die to protect the Shariah-law Egyptian constitution. A Facebook post from the military stated, “We swear to God to sacrifice with our blood for Egypt and its people against any terrorist, extremist or ignoramus. Long live Egypt and its proud people.”
The army is reportedly now in control of television, and non-essential government staff were dismissed. The Muslim Brotherhood reports that there is some attempt at talks between the two sides to avoid outright war. The military says it will now implement its “road map” for the country.
President Hosni Mubarak’s military dictatorship was overthrown just two years ago, and was replaced by Morsi in a United States-approved election. The Obama administration has hinted that any military coup could be met with a US cutoff in aid.
Ben Shapiro is Editor-At-Large of Breitbart News and author of the New York Times bestseller “Bullies: How the Left’s Culture of Fear and Intimidation Silences America” (Threshold Editions, January 8, 2013).