Analysis: Egyptian military’s new look challenged

July 8, 2013 • World News

Egyptian army soldiers take their positions on top of their armored vehicle to guard the entrances of Tahrir square, in Cairo, Egypt, Monday, July 8, 2013. Egyptian military officials said gunmen killed at least five supporters of the former president when people tried to storm a military building in Cairo. The official, who declined to be named because he was not authorized to brief reporters, also said a group had tried to storm the headquarters of the Republican Guard. He added that those killed had been supporters of former President Mohammed Morsi camped outside the building in protest at his overthrow. (AP Photo/Hassan Ammar)

CAIRO (AP) — Led by a savvy commander, Egypt’s powerful military returned to politics with a new look and a new approach. It built a coalition behind the removal of the president and rode a stunning wave of popular support.

Now after its troops killed at least 51 supporters of Mohammed Morsi, the military faces the question of how it can thwart a determined Muslim Brotherhood campaign to restore the toppled president without more heavy-handedness that could damage its image and undermine its support.

After the opposition protests of June 30, when millions of Egyptians took to the streets to call for Morsi’s ouster, the military ramped up its ongoing charm offensive, tapping into widespread discontent with the Islamist president and pro-military sentiment among the Egyptian public.

To the wild cheers of demonstrators, jet fighters swooped low over Cairo, helicopters flew overhead — trailing giant Egyptian flags and drawing a heart in the sky with red smoke. The chants of Login to read more

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