In Cairo this summer, there is scant appetite for anniversaries. The passage of one year since the critical events of the 2013 coup d’état scarcely attracts the public’s attention. There are few official ceremonies or rallies to mark the huge demonstrations on June 30 against Muhammad Mursi, the July 3 military takeover or the July 26 marches summoned by ‘Abd al-Fattah al-Sisi to give himself popular cover in his self-styled fight against terrorism.
August 14, 2013 was a day whose events and meaning Egyptians will be debating fiercely for decades to come. Following that day’s bloodshed, Egypt is in the middle of its most severe crisis since the fall of ex-president Husni Mubarak in February 2011. The fate of the country — popular sovereignty or no — likely hangs in the balance. We asked several veteran observers, all of them Middle East Report editors or authors, to offer their views of how Egypt got to this point and what the future holds.