WALKER, Mich. (WZZM) - A day after Egypt's military ousted President Mohammed Morsi, an interim leader was already appointed. The supreme justice of Egypt's Supreme Constitutional Court will hold power until a new president is elected. We wanted to know what future changes will mean for the United States.
WZZM 13 asked that question and more to Dr. Ali Metwalli, an Egyptian Professor of Finance at Western Michigan University's Haworth College of Business. He's been watching the government unfold from day one.
President Mohammed Morsi was your first freely- elected president. Does this surprise you at all?
"This isn't a surprise at all. Because he never made decisions that unified the country. Basically every decision he makes divides the country."
Who for the most part was out on the streets of Tahrir Square in the past week?
"The last estimate Google Earth estimated we're about 22 million that were on the streets since June 30. These are mostly the young people, people from all walks of life. Muslims, Christians, everybody."
Egypt is the largest Arab country. The U.S. has obviously invested a lot of time and money into this country. What does this mean for the United States?
"I feel very strongly the relationship between Egypt and the United States is going to continue to be as strong... I think things are going to be better."
"I think it's going to help the United States stabilize one of the biggest countries in the Middle East, and as a result, I think Egypt is going to play a role in helping stabilize Libya, Taniza, Syria. And hopefully, a year from now, things will look completely different in the Middle East."
"The U.S. cannot afford to not be a major player in the Middle East."
What changes need to happen for the people in your country to be happy?
"They have to be involved. The main thing is security. Lawlessness took place and took hold of the country and people were afraid to go out of their homes. I think President Morsi did not get the majority of the Egyptians to buy on the constitution he established was his party. So I think what will make the majority of the people happy is to have a constitution."
Do you know anyone living over there right now?
"I have family, cousins, and a brother."
What are they saying?
"They were really in a state of depression over the last six to seven months. Life was not easy for them, prices were going up, there is no electricity during the day, and there is no water during the day, so life is difficult. I just told my wife, maybe we can go for a visit in December, and we did not go for a visit in the last three to four years."
July 4th in America, what's your thought process knowing its Independence Day? Look what's happening in your nation right now.
"It's a freedom day as far as I'm concerned for the Egyptians, so 4th of July will be as important day for Egypt as it is for the United States. And I'm hopeful a few years from now, the country will be as democratic, as peaceful, and people live in harmony as you do here."