To sway voters, Abdel Moneim Aboul Fotouh, a moderate Islamist candidate running for president, has tried an original technique: letting puppets do the talking.
In his campaign ad, one puppet, who represents an average Egyptian, asks another puppet, representing an intellectual, what the ideal president of Egypt would look like. The intellectual replies: “Our president must be honest; he must be on the side of justice; he must listen to the population’s preoccupations; and he must never be influenced by Westerners. Choose the strongest president, who is neither a liar nor corrupt. His door will always be open.” The first man says, “I know that man. It’s Aboul Fotouh!”
Until recently, Aboul Fotouh belonged to the Muslim Brotherhood; he was kicked out when he announced he was running for the presidency. However, the charismatic leader has maintained his popularity, and is today, less than two weeks before the vote, one of the forerunners in the presidential race. As a moderate Islamist, he has found supporters both among liberals and Islamists.