The Muslim Brotherhood and the Egyptian elections

The Muslim Brotherhood emerges as the dominant opposition party.

In other cheerful news for the progress of democracy in the Middle East, the Muslim Brotherhood, which the U.S. and Egypt agree is a terrorist organization, mounted the only effective opposition to Mubarak’s ruling party, winning a sizable number of seats in the face of violent attempts by the security forces to prevent voting by opposition parties. The government reacted by arresting 200 Muslim Brotherhood leaders and threatening to prosecute judges who complained about violence at the polls.

What to do when terrorists win elections is a genuinely hard problem. One way not to have that problem is to allow non-terrorist political opposition to flourish.

Author: Mark Kleiman

Professor of Public Policy at the NYU Marron Institute for Urban Management and editor of the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis. Teaches about the methods of policy analysis about drug abuse control and crime control policy, working out the implications of two principles: that swift and certain sanctions don't have to be severe to be effective, and that well-designed threats usually don't have to be carried out. Books: Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know (with Jonathan Caulkins and Angela Hawken) When Brute Force Fails: How to Have Less Crime and Less Punishment (Princeton, 2009; named one of the "books of the year" by The Economist Against Excess: Drug Policy for Results (Basic, 1993) Marijuana: Costs of Abuse, Costs of Control (Greenwood, 1989) UCLA Homepage Curriculum Vitae Contact: