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FAREED ZAKARIA GPS
Understanding Tensions in Egypt From Both Sides
Aired July 7, 2013 - 10:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
FAREED ZAKARIA, CNN HOST: Welcome to all of you in the United States and around the world. I'm Fareed Zakaria in New York.
After a week of great turmoil, it's another day of tension in Egypt today with two big competing rallies expected in Cairo.
We'll spend much of the hour looking at what the fragile future holds for Egypt, the Arab world's most populous nation, after President Morsy was unceremoniously ousted earlier this week by the military.
We'll start with the former national security adviser, Zbigniew Brzezinski, Richard Haass, and Bret Stephens on how to respond to a military coup against a democratically elected government.
Then to Cairo and the embattled political parties, I'll talk to a leader of President Morsy's party and the leader of the opposition.
We'll also check in on Edward Snowden. Where will the NSA leaker go? Venezuela, Bolivia, Nicaragua? And how in the world will he get there?
All that and much more coming up, but, first, here's my take.
The events in Egypt over the last week have been fascinating, but, also, a bit bewildering. Most of us don't quite know what to make of them. Is what happened there a good thing or a bad thing?
So, let's start with some basic facts. The government that was deposed in Egypt was an elected government. Mohamed Morsy's Freedom and Justice Party won the presidential elections, the parliamentary elections and a referendum to approve a new Egyptian Constitution.
So, there's no getting around it, this was the party that represented the wishes of the Egyptian people as expressed through the ballot box three times.
On the other hand, the government ruled in an arbitrary and high- handed manner and, in many, many cases, violated human rights and outlawed its political opponents.
President Morsy announced that his decrees were above judicial scrutiny. He banned members of the previous ruling party from participating in politics for 10 years. He did little about the attacks on Egypt's Christian minority. The Muslim Brotherhood, of which Morsy had been a lifelong member, had promised not even to seek the presidency or even a parliamentary majority and it reneged on both pledges creating this new Freedom and Justice Party as a facade.
In 1997, I wrote an essay describing the rise of what I called. "illiberal democracies," elected governments that were abusing individual rights and freedoms. The Morsy government is a textbook example of such a regime.
But it is important to note that the post-Morsy in Egypt, the current government, does not look like one that is upholding liberty in any sense either.
Indeed, the more the arrests and the crackdowns continue, it looks like the old Mubarak military complex crowned once more over the ashes of democracy.
This has been Egypt's and the Arab world's tragedy. These lands are caught between repressive dictatorships on the one hand and illiberal democracies on the other. And from this vicious cycle, there does not seem much space for genuine liberty to break out.
So what should the United States do to help the cause of freedom and stability in Egypt? Well, a suspension of U.S. aid right now would plunge an already bankrupt country into deeper chaos.
But Washington should announce that it will continue its aid for a limited period, say two months, while it determines whether the new government is, in fact, moving to restore genuine democracy in Egypt.
Specifically, it should ask for three things. The end to arbitrary arrests of the Muslim Brotherhood or any groups or people for political opposition. Also, the end of the crackdown on the media in all forms.
The writing of a new constitution through a process that includes all major voices in Egyptian life, the scheduling of parliamentary and presidential elections in which everyone can participate, including and most especially the Muslim Brotherhood.
If these conditions are not met, than Washington will have no alternative than to recognize the reality that this is not the restoration of democracy nor a path to moderation and inclusion, this is a pretty old-fashioned military coup and it should be treated as such.
If you'd like to take a look at that 1997 essay, "The Rise of Illiberal Democracy," it's up on our website, cnn.com/fareed. It still holds up pretty well.
Anyway, let's get started. Joining me now is my panel for this hour, Zbigniew Brzezinski in Washington, Richard Haass and Bret Stephens here in New York. Gentleman, I'll get to you in just a moment, but let's begin with the latest Cairo. CNN's Ben Wedeman, who has covered the Arab Spring right from the start, is overlooking Tahrir Square.
Ben, give us the latest. How dangerous do things look over there?
BEN WEDEMAN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Certainly, Egypt, at the moment, is on a knife's edge. We have large demonstrations planned in support of the military and in support of the toppling of Mohamed Morsy in this part of town.
In other parts of town, supporters are gathering, supporters of Mohamed Morsy. Now, Friday, we saw clashes in Cairo. There's much worry that we could have a repeat of what we saw Friday today as well.
So, nerves very much on edge here in Cairo today, Fareed.
ZAKARIA: Ben, we are all assuming that the ouster of Morsy's government is now a settled fact. But there is this problem which is that the Muslim Brotherhood is the single, largest political force in Egypt as far as we can tell and it has not reconciled itself to this reality.
Is it your sense that it is going to continue these marches, these demonstrations until it can get what? What is the game plan for the Brotherhood?
WEDEMAN: Well, I think what the Brotherhood is trying to do right now, Fareed, is to show that they have numbers as well, that they can mobilize tens of thousands, hundreds of thousands of people throughout the country and that their supporters are as convinced that they are right as perhaps the other side is as well.
But it's important to stress that, at the moment, really the current government regime in Cairo is really pushing the Brotherhood to the wall.
We heard today that arrest warrants have been issued for two senior figures in the Brotherhood, Dr. Essam al-Erian and a member of parliament Muhammad al-Beltagy, both of them very prominent figures within the Brotherhood.
Those pro-Brotherhood stations -- TV stations remain closed and if you listen closely to the pro-government media at the moment, they're really stressing and stoking the anger of many ordinary Egyptians at the Brotherhood.
And it does appear that the intention is to really crackdown on them in the coming days, Fareed.
ZAKARIA: A final though from you, Ben, on the rise of the Al- Nour Party. This is the extreme religious party that is, in a sense, to the right of the Muslim Brotherhood and it is now in a strange alliance with the military.
Have they become more powerful and what do the moderates and liberals think of that?
WEDEMAN: Well, they're very unhappy because it was the Nour Party that basically derailed the attempt to get Mohamed ElBaradei appointed as prime minister.
They objected to that and it was really at the very last moment when reporters had been called to the presidential palace for a press conference, an announcement that Mohamed ElBaradei had been appointed, then it was announced that, in fact, he wasn't appointed.
Excuse me, a lot of dust in Cairo these days.
And so they really, in a sense, are the kingmakers. They are the Islamists within the current regime, but without their approval it appears that Mohamed ElBaradei cannot be appointed prime minister and they are the ones who can decide.
ZAKARIA: Thank you, Ben. Yes, Mohamed ElBaradei was going to be on our program, developed laryngitis, which I call "political laryngitis," at the last moment.
Ben, thank you very much. Lots more ahead. When we come back, my panel here in New York plus views from the main players in Cairo. Right back.
ZAKARIA: Has the United States responded properly in Egypt? Is there a correct response?
My three guests will help answer that question. Zbigniew Brzezinski was President Carter's National Security Adviser.
Richard Haas was a top official in the National Security Council and at the State Department under President Bush. He's now President of the Council on Foreign Relations.
And Bret Stephens is the Foreign Affairs Columnist for the Wall Street Journal.
ZAKARIA: Zbigniew, if I could start with you, we now know that Anne Patterson, the U.S. Ambassador, cautioned the military not to intervene in politics in the way that they did.
Were you surprised that they went ahead anyway, essentially defying the United States.
ZBIGNIEW BRZEZINSKI, FORMER NATIONAL SECURITY ADVISER: I listened carefully to what you said, first of all, a few minutes ago and I agree with your analysis, but, quite frankly, I don't agree with your prescriptions and that's relevant to the question you have just posed.
We have to face the fact that Egypt is in the midst of a profound revolution that brings together three different historical experiences in Egypt that are now coming to a head: A nationalist revolution against foreign domination, a social revolution against domestic inadequacies, a religious fanaticism that is on the rise. And all of this combined could put Egypt into a state of total upheaval.
We have to be extremely careful and the last thing we need to do is to start giving ultimata, in effect, with dates on them to whoever governs Egypt whether it's the military or whether it is, in fact, the Muslim Brotherhood.
We are not the decisive factory anymore in internal Egyptian politics and that's related more generally to the decline of American position in the Middle East, which may be tipping toward region-wide violence.
So, we have to act with caution and discretion and the last thing we ought to be doing is giving ultimata with dates on them, either to the military if they remain in government or the Muslim Brotherhood if it regains it somehow.
ZAKARIA: Richard Haas, you wrote a piece in the Financial Times in which you said, "This is not a coup." As the most outspoken defender of this position, I want to ask you first why you define -- why you say that you can actually come up with a definition that this isn't a coup.
And if you were government right now, how would you get around the legislation which, whatever your definition is, the legislation says if a government that is democratically elected is ousted by the military or by military decree, aid should stop.
How do you get around that?
RICHARD HAASS, FORMER OFFICIAL, NATIONAL SECURITY COUNCIL AND STATE DEPARTMENT; PRESIDENT, COUNCIL ON FOREIGN RELATIONS: Well, traditionally, Fareed, coups have two features. One is that the military essentially takes the initiative and, in this case, the military was not taking the initiative.
If anything, they were responding to the fact that, what, one out of every five or six Egyptians was in the streets and was protesting against this government.
Secondly, the military was not grabbing power for itself. It's one thing if the military is setting itself up as the new authority. In this case, though, there seems to be, and I put the emphasis on seems to be, a political transition.
Now, it may turn out to be this is just a sham and the military was just using this as a pretext to gain political power for itself, in which case, in hindsight, we'll say gee, it actually was something of a coup and then we'll have to decide what it is we want to do.
But, right now, I think we've got to cut them some slack and we've got to work with them. So, that gets very quickly to this prescriptive thing, which you mentioned in your opening remarks and Zbigniew mentioned in his.
And I would simply say look, it's -- whether the parallel is Turkey or whether Egypt is somewhat unique, but the military now is in a position to have influence. We want to work with them. We want to see them influenced in the direction of a political process.
The last thing we want to see, by the way, is the Muslim Brotherhood give up on conventional politics. We don't want them to feel that violence in the streets are their only options.
So we essentially want to encourage the military to open things up, to set some kind of a calendar. If anything, I would actually -- rather than think about cutting aid, I would be willing to expand aid.
I would willing to say look, we will work with you on some type of a roadmap, to use their word, a political openness of redrafting a constitution, of political participation, of elections, of economic and political reforms to tide you through.
And we're willing to be your partner conditionally so long as you take certain steps.
ZAKARIA: Bret, in your column, you seem to suggest that, you know, if you're going to do a coup, do it properly. If you're going to take Vienna, as Napoleon said, take Vienna.
Does that mean you want the military to continue the crackdowns on the opposition, to continue jailing people, to continue shutting down media?
BRET STEPHENS, FOREIGN AFFAIRS COLUMNIST, WALL STREET JOURNAL: Well, not necessarily. I want this process to succeed. You know, let's face it, this is a coup.
To adapt Potter Stewart's line about pornography, "You know it when you see it." This is what -- this is precisely what took place. We can't be ambivalent about what happened.
Ambivalence might be a posture for columnists to take, but it's not a good posture of policy-makers to take. General al-Sisi is in the driver's seat. How do we help him succeed at what he's doing?
A few things, first of all, we should not necessarily -- first of all, we should not put red lines, as Mr. Brzezinski just said, that we might not be able to honor at some future date.
Secondly, you have a country that is in the midst of a profound economic crisis. It needs two things above all; it needs wheat or flour and it needs oil. And we should work with our -- with the Saudis to provide both of those things.
We shouldn't set a political timetable. What we should be doing is quietly cautioning the military behind the scenes not with public pronouncements, but about taking an approach that is likely going to quiet the Brotherhood or at least make is postpone its political demands. Because the Brotherhood can take one of two lessons from what's just happened. One is you enter democracy, you think you're playing by the rules and guess what they cut your legs out from under you anyway.
Or they can take the lesson that when you hold power, you need to be accountable, you need to be responsible and you need to take things slowly taking into account the views of all stakeholders.
That's what Morsy and the Brotherhood failed to do and that the lesson we should be driving home with the Brotherhood as well that they can participate in a political process so long as they don't mean to use it as a vehicle for assuming dictatorial powers, which is what they seemed to be doing and which is what precipitated this upheaval in the first place.
ZAKARIA: Zbigniew, you said something I want to come back to and it was my original question. Egypt is now on its own track and going through a kind of profound change.
You wrote an essay a couple of years ago that I was struck by about the kind of political upheavals taking place in the world which were a combination of economic assertiveness, political assertiveness, mobilization suggesting that these countries are going to do what they are going to do and that the U.S. has limited influence.
Is that the new reality, you think?
BRZEZINSKI: I think so very much. In fact, I think what we are dealing with is not even necessarily a coup because a coup would be against a functioning government. This is a reaction to the dissolution of effective government in Egypt.
But we should be careful not to cast our lot with one side or the other too early. We don't know what the outcome here will be. There might be massive violence and perhaps the religious organizations parties will come to power. We'll have to deal with them too.
In other words, we ought to be cautious, restrained, willing to help whoever manages the situation in whatever fashion and let the dust settle.
And remember that Egypt is one of the two most important countries to us in the Middle East. That is to say, in addition to Israel, of course, as a sort of separate entity, Turkey and Egypt.
And we must not get involved in becoming a protagonist in what may be a prolonged and terribly destructive conflict within Egypt.
We can help to settle it down. We can cautiously work with whoever is in power, but let us not prejudge the outcome because we are in the first phase of what could be a prolonged and very bitter and very bloody struggle.
ZAKARIA: Thank you, folks. Stay with us. The roundtable will be back. Up next, we go back to Cairo and we speak to the two main factions competing for power. What do they want? What happens next? Stay with us.
ZAKARIA: How to understand the tensions between President Morsy's party and the opposition? Let us here from both sides.
First, let's go to Ambassador Nabil Fahmy, a leader of the opposition Doustor party, former Egyptian Ambassador to the United States; now the Dean of the School of Global Affairs at the American University in Cairo.
Then, I'll talk to Amr Darrag, a founding member of former President Morsy's Freedom and Justice Party, and the man who oversaw the drafting of Egypt's new constitution under Morsy.
First, Nabil Fahmy. Nabil, what do you say to members of the Muslim Brotherhood? They would argue, I think, that they took part in democratic politics as they were asked to, they organized for the elections, they won a parliament and then a court dissolved the entire lower house.
They won a presidential election and their president has now been ousted. They drafted a constitution, which was approved by 64 percent of the Egyptian people via referendum. So, three -- and that constitution has now been suspended.
Three times they went participating in the democratic process to create democracy and all three times they have been -- all three things have now been dislodged by the military.
Isn't that a fair argument from their point of view?
NABIL FAHMY, LEADER, DOUSTOR PARTY; FORMER EGYPTIAN AMBASSADOR TO THE UNITED STATES; DEAN, SCHOOL OF GLOBAL AFFAIRS, AMERICAN UNIVERSITY IN CAIRO: I think the issue here is not whether you had a democratic election, but whether you had democratic governance.
Governance that is inclusive to all Egyptians be they Islamists or non-Islamists, that is accountable, that is transparent and that's really where -- why you had 20 million signing a petition asking for new elections.
That was the request that they made. We have no process of recall or impeachment so they were asking for new elections. In the absence of that, that is why you had the demonstrations.
What we need to find now is a political identity for Egypt that includes Islamists and non-Islamists and, hopefully, the new government that will be established in a few days will reach out to all Egyptians.
They are all Egyptians and they should be invited back into the process, a process of governance that is pluralistic. Not only by way of -- we are (INAUDIBLE)
ZAKARIA: I think we lost Nabil Fahmy. I'm going to go to the opposition leader -- to Amr Darrag, a former member of President Morsy's party.
Amr, what do you say to that argument that Nabil Fahmy makes that your party did not govern in a democratic fashion, Egypt does not have a recall process and 20 million signed a petition asking for new elections.
So, in effect, there was a kind of national vote of no confidence against the Muslim Brotherhood.
AMR DARRAG, FOUNDING MEMBER, FREEDOM AND JUSTICE PARTY: Well, Fareed, I'm afraid that these are the arguments that are being proposed to justify a military coup.
Actually, no matter what the performance of the government was, whether we agree or not about the performance of the government, the simple question is does this justify a military coup? Does this justify the chief leader of the army to come out and install the opposition to be the ruling party? This is the main question.
Number two, when we talk about undemocratic governments, what are the evidence on that? We had a government. As a matter of fact, only 25 percent of the government belonged to the Freedom and Justice Party although the Freedom and Justice Party got the majority in the elections -- in the parliamentary elections.
The parliament was there -- the upper chamber of the parliament was there. It was functioning. And there was planning for elections coming in two or three months.
So, how can you define this as undemocratic? As a matter of fact, as President Morsy announced and as our prime minister announced many times, he -- many times invitation was provided to leaders and members of all parties of Egypt to participate in the government, but they declined.
And nevertheless, even if the whole government was full of Freedom and Justice Party and that's -- and if you even assumed that, which was not the case, still that was the majority government.
However, what happened is that people started to oppose the government, which is all right. I mean in any democratic society, you have opponents of the government, you have opposition.
And they were given absolute freedom to express their opinion even in demonstrations. Nobody stood in front of the demonstrations. And they were collecting signatures on a petition.
I'm not sure whether they reached 20 million or 2 million or 1 million. Nobody counted after that and there is no way to verify that number anyway.
But, of course, I acknowledged that there were large demonstrations against the ruling party. That was a reality. But, again, here comes my question, does this justify a military coup?
When it comes to demonstrations, what we saw Friday -- last Friday and what we are seeing -- what we are going to see today and starting to happen actually, is that we have massive demonstrations requiring, requesting the reinstallment of President Morsy, the legitimate president of the republic.
Now, is the military going to intervene again and say based on the will of these people -- millions of people; I'm going to reinstall the president again?
This is not the way to run democracies. Democracies are always run in a democratic way. The democratic way is to leave the government to perform, (INAUDIBLE) as much as you want, gather your opposition, go into elections and try to win the elections.
If the opposition had these 20 million supporters, they would have easily won the elections -- the coming parliamentary elections, they could have formed a government, they could have even ousted the president if they wanted, they could have changed the constitution.
They could have done a lot of things. Why do they have to do that via a military coup? This is the main question.
ZAKARIA: But Nabil Fahmy, I'm going to ask you one quick question before we have to leave. Which is, the effort right now to appoint Mohammed ElBaradei prime minister faltered because you found that the ultraconservative, Al-Noir party would not allow it. So, you are seeing -- you know, as a liberal and a moderate, I am struck by you're in a strange position where you have the two most illiberal forces in Egyptian life, that is the military, which has been running the country for six decades as a dictatorship, and these ultraconservative Salafists, Islamic fundamentalists have allied to squeeze out moderates like Mohamed ElBaradei. That doesn't sound like a good future for Egypt.
FAHMY: As I said, we are trying to find and define our political identity in the 21st century. That's the task. But I just wanted to go back for a second, Fareed, on this issue of democratic governance. I think it is incorrect to argue that we had democratic governance or that the constitution was passed democratically. The committee on the constitution only included the Islamists. All of the non-Islamists had withdrawn from the constitution. It ultimately got only 22 percent of the voting public.
FAHMY: 66 percent, that was of the number of people who voted, a very low participation. Anyway, the public spoke to the president, asked him to call for elections. In the absence of recall or appeal. It was a peaceful appeal to the president. Had he responded, we would not have faced the situation we are facing today. The military, which is never the best recourse, was forced to intervene. They had to either intervene or allow for chaos. But again, we are reaching out to all Islamists, all Egyptians. We want to move Egypt forward together. It will neither be an Islamist state nor a non-Islamist state. We are Egyptians. Let's find a way to move together.
ZAKARIA: Nabil Fahmy, thank you. We heard from both sides. Now, when we come back, expert analysis on Egypt. Tarek Masoud and Mona Eltahawy. Stay with us.
ZAKARIA: All week we saw the split-screens, the anti-Morsy protests in Cairo's Tahrir Square on the one side, on the other side, the pro-Morsy rallies in nearby Nasr City. It was quite a representation of what is believed to be a deep split in Egyptian society. How do I understand this dichotomy in Egypt and what does it mean for the future of the country? I want to bring in Mona Eltahawy here in New York and Tarek Masoud in Boston. Mona is a Cairo-based writer and commentator, and Tarek is a professor at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government.
Mona, you're a fiery, fierce Egyptian liberal. How do you feel about the fact that you have had your wishes delivered to you, in a sense, but on the backs of tanks, of a military takeover?
MONA ELTAHAWY, EGYPTIAN COMMENTATOR: I see it more as our wishes were delivered through the millions of people who hit the streets. We had a coup in Egypt in 1952 that was led by six army officers and then the people joined them. This was the reverse. We had millions of people on the street, effectively impeaching a president who was getting in the way of our democratic process, not helping it. But I want to make very clear that just as those millions made it very clear to Morsy that we can impeach you, we must make it very clear to General Sisi that we also do not want you to rule, because our revolution was never about keeping military rule. We want to end 60 years of military rule. So I am not happy as a liberal to see the army involved in politics in Egypt in any way, but Morsy left us no institution, quote/unquote, other than the street to impeach him. I want a very quick transition to civilian, clearly, civilian rule, without any interference from Sisi, without Sisi appointing or installing anyone. And as an Egyptian liberal, I also want to involve everyone. I don't want to marginalize anyone in the way that Morsy marginalized many of us in Egypt.
ZAKARIA: Tarek Masoud, you are a great student of the Muslim Brotherhood. You have spent months and months following these guys. You knew President Morsy very well. What do you think they're going to do? At the end of the day, we're again, I come back to the fact, we're just assuming that this is going to work out, and I just wonder. The Muslim Brotherhood is the most powerful organized force in Egypt. What do you think they're going to do next?
TAREK MASOUD, ASSOCIATE PROFESSOR, HARVARD UNIVERSITY: I think that it's unrealistic to assume that the Muslim Brotherhood is going to lie down. Obviously, we've seen these massive protests. And when I talk to members of the Muslim Brotherhood now, they tell me that this will not stand, that they will absolutely reverse this military coup and put Mohamed Morsy back in the presidency. Now, I don't see how that's realistic at all, given, as Mona said, the millions of people who clearly demonstrated that they did not want Mohamed Morsy. But this is what the Muslim Brotherhood thinks. I think the main challenge now for the Egyptian political establishment is trying to figure out a way to do what Mona asked for and incorporate the Muslim Brotherhood in the new transition, and yet, I think that will take such a degree of political creativity and genius to bring this movement that has now just suffered one of the greatest blows in its history to get them to forget this and to come back to negotiating table is going to be a -- it's going to require some kind of magic that I'm not sure anybody in Egypt can pull off.
ZAKARIA: Tarek, you're a student of political Islam. So, if you were, you know, a political Islamist or a fundamentalist, here's what you look at. They won the elections in Algeria in 1992, the military annulled the elections. Hamas won the elections in Gaza, they were boycotted and banned. The Refah party wins in Turkey, the Turkish military institutes a coup. And as I say, three times the Muslim Brotherhood won on the polls here. Is there a danger that this movement says, you know what, this democracy idea just doesn't work for us, we're going to do something else?
MASOUD: Well, look, there's certainly a danger that some elements in the Muslim Brotherhood and in the Islamic movement more broadly will absolutely take that lesson from this process. But when I go back and I studied the Muslim Brotherhood's early history, one thing that is really remarkable about this movement is that participation in electoral politics is encoded in its DNA, going all the way back to the founder, Hassan al-Banna. And this is not the first time that the Muslim Brotherhood has experienced the will of the people, in its view, being thwarted by the military or by the government. They've suffered rigged elections under Mubarak.
So, if I were to bet, I would say that there is still some possibility, considerable possibility that this movement could come back to the democratic process. The question is, you know, how long is it going to take for that to happen and what can Egypt's current leaders do? And I just don't know. It seems that they're trying to move rapidly to forget about the Morsy era and appoint new government and move forward, and it sounds like they are -- nobody is really comprehending just the magnitude of what has been pulled off here, and particularly from the standpoint of the Muslim Brotherhood, how traumatic this is and how they have a desire for vengeance.
ZAKARIA: If there are new elections and if there are new presidential elections, should Mohamed Morsy be allowed to run for president?
ELTAHAWY: That's a difficult question. I think anybody should be allowed to run for president as long as we have a constitution that allows us to remove whoever becomes our president in a way that the constitution that Morsy rushed into effect basically barred us from doing. And I think it's also very important to get beyond this fetishization of a ballot box. That democracy isn't just about a piece of paper in a box. Democracy is about allowing institutions to flourish alongside the ballot box so that we have a mechanism by which we say we, the people who brought you in, can now bring you out. And as a woman, I want to make it very clear as well that it bothers me deeply that we're still stuck between the Islamists and the military, because the people who suffer the most are women.
If you look at what's been happening, as happy as I am that we got rid of Mohamed Morsy, there were more than 100 sexual assaults in Tahrir Square over the past few days, which is horrendous. As an Egyptian woman, I say we have to address this. We need a national campaign against sexual violence. And having these two polar opposites, the Islamists and the military, neither of which support gender equality or women's rights, for me an as an Egyptian woman, this must be a priority of whoever takes government in Egypt.
ZAKARIA: Well said. Mona Eltahawy, Tarek Masoud, thank you very much.
We're going to move on now, after the break, an update on the San Francisco plane crash. Then, Edward Snowden with our great panel, Zbig Brzezinski, Richard Haass, Bret Stephens. Right back.
MIGUEL MARQUEZ, CNN ANCHOR: You are looking at live pictures of CNN affiliate KGO of the crash of Asiana Airlines Flight 214 and our continuing coverage. "Fareed Zakaria GPS" will continue in a moment. I want to update you on a few things happening here at San Francisco airport. Officials are now meeting. We expect the press conference now from officials, states, local and federal. Once they come out of that big meeting they are having this morning, a couple of other things to update you on. The flight data recorders, as we know, have been recovered from that airplane. They were taken overnight to Washington, D.C. Officials say they are in good shape and they are getting a download from them at this hour. A big thing that investigators will be focused on is the flight path. Why did that plane come down too low and hits that embankment before come -- skidding to a stop on the airport tarmac here? Engine power will be an issue. The CEO of Asiana Airlines saying at this point he knows of no problem with those engines. Passengers on that plane say that the engines powered up just before that plane made contact with that embankment wall.
The Asiana CEO also saying that there was no announcement to passengers prior to that plane crashing. We also know that the instrument landing system, the ILS system here at San Francisco airport, was not functional on that -- at the airport at that time, that runway. It is not clear that that contributed to this problem. The Boeing 777 does have a backup. We will be looking at all of that, coming up.
ZAKARIA: Let's go now to the other big international story of the day, the hunt for Edward Snowden. At this hour, he is believed to be still holed up in the transit area of Moscow's airport, but in recent days, no fewer than three Latin American countries -- Venezuela, Bolivia and Nicaragua -- have indicated a willingness to give the NSA leaker a new home. Can the U.S. stop him? Let's bring back my panel of experts, Zbigniew Brzezinski, Richard Haass and Bret Stephens.
Zbig, I want to start with you. What do you make of this story, because you had to deal with these kinds of things during the Cold War when you were national security adviser, but this guy is not working for another government. It's a kind of vague, nihilistic anarchism. I mean I presume the message here is he doesn't want the governments to do any espionage? Or, you know -- what do you make of it?
BRZEZINSKI: Well, think of Daniel Ellsberg. He was against our policy in Vietnam. He revealed classified documents. He did it in the United States and was prepared to face the music. He may have been misguided, but he certainly was patriotic. What did this guy do? He goes to China and then he goes to Russia. Both countries that would like to replace us on top of the global totem pole. And Russia certainly under Putin is far from being friendly to the United States. So, what are his motives? Who's he trying to appeal to? Who are his allies that he made his choice? In other words, I am very skeptical about his motivations. Maybe he's psychologically mixed up, but he's certainly no friend of the United States objectively and maybe even subjectively.
ZAKARIA: Richard Haass, we do seem to be having some, you know, influence in getting these governments to not be very responsive, other than, you know, these three Latin American governments. Putin gave this remarkable statement where he said this guy needs to get out because it's upsetting the work of our friends, the Americans.
HAASS: It's -- Machiavelli once said that you can tell somebody by the people he has around them. Well, this character, the countries that are potentially willing to take him are essentially outliers. And that tells you something. They are really outside -- to the extent there even is an international community, they're not part of it. This has turned into a farce. But we should not forget, wrapped around this farce is a tragedy. This guy is not a whistleblower. He is a felon. He committed treason. And what he did will make Americans and others around the world less safe. So, it might be fun at times to talk about him the way the media is, but this is serious stuff. People will be vulnerable because of the way that he has tipped off groups and individuals who want to do us severe harm. So, wherever he ends up, in an airport lounge or in Venezuela or wherever, his legacy will be truly destructive.
ZAKARIA: But the "Journal," that has always been a zealous protector of individual freedoms and writes, is there a kind of a libertarian part of you that looks at this -- at the megadata collection and worries about what it means?
STEPHENS: No, governments spy, and we're realists also, and all governments have intelligence agencies and they have legal controls, which operate and which operated at the NSA under multiple administrations. So, I agree with both of these comments. You know, Martin Luther King wrote "Letter From a Birmingham Jail." What is Snowden going to write, letter from a Moscow transit lounge? Letter from a Venezuelan four-star hotel? This is not a guy who is willing to pay the price for the civil disobedience he thought he was committing. He's also not a whistleblower. He went into the NSA with the intention to reveal secrets. It's not like he got there and said, oh, geez, terrible things are happening, I need to reveal this to the public at large. One comment, though, which is, we're holding Snowden -- we want to hold Snowden morally accountable. Someone needs to ask, how is it that after the Bradley Manning incident, you can still have a 29-year-old contractor, not even working for the government itself, essentially walking into the sanctum sanctorum of our American intelligence establishment and putting so much information on a zip drive? Or I assume this is a large quantity of information. Someone within the intelligence establishment has to say why do we let this happen again and again.
ZAKARIA: It's funny, because people used to always say we need to share more intelligence, government is too siloed, you know. And now when you share intelligence, it turns out the Bradley Mannings of the world and the Edward Snowdens of the world end up with too much intelligence. There's probably some happy medium. We've got to go. Thank you, everyone.
Up next, the latest edition of "Superman" is Japanese. He's a well-known political figure. I will explain when we come back.
ZAKARIA: Thursday was Independence Day here in the United States, but let's not forget that Monday was Canada Day for our neighbors to the north. That day celebrates not independence, but a union of sorts, when the British parliament joined together New Brunswick, Nova Scotia and the province of Canada into the dominion of Canada in 1867. It brings me to my question of the week from "The GPS Challenge" -- when did Canada gain independence from Britain? Canadian viewers, you have it easy this week. "A," 1882. "B," 1892. "C," 1982. Or "D," 1992. Stay tuned and we'll tell you the correct answer. Go to cnn.com/Fareed for more of "The GPS Challenge." you can also follow us on Twitter and Facebook. Also remember, you can go to iTunes.com/Fareed if you ever miss a show or a special.
This week's "Book of the Week" is related to July 4th. Around this time of the year, I often pick up something about American history, and I would recommend to you Gordon Woods' "The Idea of America." Wood is quite simply the greatest living historian of the American Revolution, and this is a collection of his essays about the founding, about American exceptionalism, about religion and much more. It is a treasure chest and you will dip into it repeatedly.
Now for "The Last Look." Japan's politicians aren't known for their possess, their charisma, and the country's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is no exception. You don't see him playing saxophone on late- night TV. You don't see him giving out high fives. You don't see him relaxing, enjoying a ball game. So, his party wondered, how do you get young people excited about Abe and his party? Hmm. In this video game in gadget-obsessed nation, what in the world could they do? The answer? Abe-piong, which translates to Abe hops in English, that is hops like a bunny. It's a game released last week for your Apple or android or smartphone and your mission is to make Abe hop higher and higher until he reaches the pinnacle, prime minister. And when he becomes PM, he gets a superhero's cape. I think he should only get the cape when he truly revives Japan's economy.
I can't resist showing you another video, this one real, not animated, of another Asian politician trying to look cool. Here's Ban Ki-moon, the U.N. Secretary General, dancing "Gangnam Style" with who else? The correct answer to our "GPS Challenge" question was "C." Canada didn't become fully independent from the British crown until 31 years ago, but remains to this day a member of the commonwealth. Thanks to all of you for being part of my program this week. I will see you next week.