I think the first step to being able to reach any actual negotiation results is that both sides have to admit to their errors/crimes – otherwise, any conversation is marred by a distrust because of the lies.
It’s very hard to take the MB seriously when one of their spokespeople, Mona Qazzaz starts to reply to a question about armed protesters with the phrase ‘the protests are largely peaceful’ – and then (on camera, live) ‘corrects’ herself and says ‘absolutely peaceful’…
The MB’s insistence that their protests are peaceful is just as ludicrous as the Egyptian security forces insisting that they did a ‘good job’ and ‘minimized casualties’. The difference is, and this is a fact that does, in fact, effect how most Egyptians feel about it, that of those two sides, the police are SUPPOSED to be armed.
I distrust both the Muslim Brotherhood and the Military, and both have done plenty to earn that distrust. However, the fact of the matter is that the Egyptian people, who rose up against the military in 2012, have decided that they distrust the Muslim Brotherhood even less than the military, and that they hated the MB’s social, political, and religious fascism enough to risk another roll of the military management, in the hopes that El-Sisi is a better, or at least smarter man, and has learned a few lessons from SCAF’s abysmal run from 2011, to 2012.
The best policy I can think of for entities like the USA or the EU, if we assume a disinterested altruism or an actual concern for democratic development and human rights – is to absolutely stop focusing on WHO is doing things, and focus a lot more on WHAT is being done…
Any ‘rewards’ (development aid), or ‘punishments’ (sanctions, lack of arms supply), etc – need to be tied not to a group, or a political party, but to the actual agreement to, and implementation of, basic human rights, and the degree to which policies are both free and inclusive.
So, not so much ‘if the army does this, or the MB does this’ – but more along the lines of ‘If we rate it as a ‘democratic-freedom-insuring’ constitution, then good. If elections seem to actually be honest, and transparent, then good, etc.
Are murderers being tried? No matter WHICH party they belong to, whether MB or Military or Police? Then good! If not, then things are sorely going wrong.
Those concerned need to look at developments and results a lot more than they’re looking at actors and events.