Cairo, Egypt – After decades of being an underground group, Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood finally got its chance to realise its dream of mainstream appeal, and rise to power through the country’s first presidential elections, which followed the 2011 toppling of Hosni Mubarak.
The Brotherhood’s Mohamed Morsi, who was not initially the group’s preferred presidential candidate, narrowly won a run-off vote against Ahmed Shafiq, a former Mubarak aide.
Seen by many voters as the better of two bad options, Morsi managed to secure a fraction more than half of the total votes, and was the republic’s first elected civilian president.
So far, luck was on his side. He had managed to escape from prison, where he had been held during the revolution, and was now running the country.
He was quick to forget, however, that many – including those who supported him in the race – were hungry for change.
One eventful year into his four-year tenure, Morsi’s rule was shattered beneath the feet of millions who took to the streets demanding his resignation.
With the army’s backing, the Brotherhood’s dream was short-lived. On Wednesday, Morsi will stand trial over the jailbreak that freed him, as well as accusations of killing protesters and collaborating with Hamas and Hezbollah to carry out “terrorist conspiracies” against Egypt.
He could face the death penalty over the charges.