First Advisor

Robert Asaadi

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) in Political Science and University Honors


Political Science




Military government -- Egypt -- 21st century, Egypt -- Politics and government -- 21st century, Egypt -- Armed Forces -- Political activity




What factors account for the largely unmatched resilience of military control over Egyptian politics? This thesis examines the literature on civil-military relations, post-authoritarian civilianization and corporate grievance theory to explain how the Egyptian military has maintained political dominance despite repeated challenges to its authority and global trends toward political civilianization. I argue that the unique durability of military-dominated rule in Egypt is a product of a combination of country-specific factors. Firstly, the Egyptian armed forces wield a substantial amount of both hard and soft power within the country, enjoying a high degree of popularity that contributes to the depth of its influence. Secondly, a number of historical and institutional factors have fostered an environment in which the military as a corporate body has had both the motivation and the opportunity to intervene and unseat civilian leaders or other potential challengers. Thirdly, the Egyptian military’s deep politicization as well as the role it played in the years following the 2011 uprisings have produced a dynamic through which its leadership has been able to resist any attempt to crack down on its significant “reserved domains” of privilege.


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