Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi ordered the forced retirement of Defense Minister Field Marshal Hussein Tantawi, and did away with constitutional amendments that were issued by the military council.
Mursi also ordered the retirement of Sami Anan, the army chief of staff, reported the state-run Al-Ahram daily. Navy head Mohab Memish was also stripped of power but Mursi named him head of the Suez Canal Authority, while the heads of air defense and the air force were also sacked.
The constitutional amendments drafted by the military council were also scrapped, effectively giving Morsi commander-in-chief powers.
He gave medals to both Anan and Tantawi, who headed the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces—the shadowy military organization that ruled Egypt after President Hosni Mubarak was ousted in 2011.
Then, Mursi appointed military intelligence chief Abdel Fatah El-Sisi defense minister to replace Tantawi. Third army commander Sedky Sobhy will replace Anan.The latest decisions are viewed as an increase in tensions between the civilian-ruled government headed by Morsi, who is from the Islamist Muslim Brotherhood, and the military.
Farrag Ismail, a longtime Egyptian journalist, told Saudi-owned Al-Araibya, “The military council is finished. … The president is the commander-in-chief.”