Jannis Grimm

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Protesters shout slogans against Egyptian President Abdel Fatah al-Sissi during a demonstration on April 15, 2016, in Cairo. The protests were over transfer of sovereignty of the two Red Sea islands, Tiran and Sanafir, from Egypt to Saudi Arabia. (Amr Nabil/AP)

Earlier this month, Egyptian President Abdel Fatah al-Sissi won reelection with a sweeping 97 percent of the vote, in what was widely considered a sham election. Overall participation was only 41 percent of registered voters, falling short of the 47 percent four years ago. The low turnout was effectively a gauge of the faltering popular support for the nationalist policies of Sissi, whose campaign centered on his ability to safeguard security and stability.

In the Egyptian context, nationalism is often understood as a tool wielded by the state to co-opt and redirect street pressure for reform into support for a strong state.…  Seguir leyendo »