Following the 2011 Egyptian revolution, SCAF took control of the country for an interim period until Morsi came to office following Egypt's first
democratic election. While many in the opposition see military intervention, and even a possible coup, as a better alternative to Morsi staying in power,
memories of SCAF brutally raping and assaulting women, detaining thousands of civilians, and massacring protesters, have been burned into the memories of
many Egyptians who risked their jobs, their security, and their lives fighting for freedom.
"I saw them dragging girls," said Tahrir protester Hoda El Nabawi as she adjusted her hijab and held the hand of her young son even tighter. "I've seen
protesters get massacred by SCAF." Even though Nabawi worries that military rule will feed -- and condone - violence, she said that she prefers SCAF rule
over Morsi. She, like many protesters, vows to return every day to Tahrir until Morsi steps down.
Following mass protests on June 30, marking the one-year anniversary of Morsi's first year in office, at least ten ministers have reportedly resigned from
the president's cabinet, including the water and tourism ministers. Sami Anan, the president's military advisor, also stepped down, in solidarity with
opposition protesters. He urged the army to side with the people.
Before the military statement threatening intervention if Morsi did not meet protesters' demands, the rebel campaign "Tamarod" issued their own statement
giving the president until 5 p.m. on Tuesday to step down and leave "power to Egyptian state institutions to prepare for early elections." If he refuses,
civil disobedience will ensue, campaign members warned.
At least 16 people have died so far in clashes between the opposition and pro-Morsi protesters. And with the military's statement comes rising anger from
Muslim Brotherhood supporters, who say that Morsi was democratically elected and cannot legally be overthrown.
"Egypt voted, and they elected Morsi," said Egyptian-American Hiba Attia at an Islamist rally in Nasr City on June 30. "It's like the U.S. throwing Obama out of office after one year. That's not democracy."
Some protest-weary Egyptians fear that neither Morsi nor SCAF will create an environment of true democracy. "The protests are awful," said a young man who
sells books in Tahrir and asked not to be named. "Everything is messed up. No matter what I do, the government will always do what it wants to do. It
doesn't look like it's going to get any better." The only hope he has is with God, he said.
But Ali Selit, who recently finished mandatory military service and is now looking for a job, sees the current political situation as a step in the right
direction." We are seeing new people in the streets, many who have never protested before," he said next to the presidential palace as thousands of
protesters chanted "Masr! Masr!" (Egypt! Egypt!) to the sound of beating drums.