Obama Fiddles As Egypt Collapse
As we see the nation of Egypt coming apart at the seams, the Obama administration is doing nothing. Demonstrators were gathered peacefully in central Cairo on Jan. 25 to demand an end to President Hosni Mubarak’s nearly 30 years in power and protest economic woes in the North African nation. The protests came days after Tunisian leader Zine El Abidine Ben Ali was forced into exile by demonstrations in his home country. The United States has a stake in the survival of the regime, if not so much that of Mubarak personally or the succession of his son, Gamal. This means that U.S. policy should put an emphasis on the regime’s survival. The regime might be better off without the Mubaraks since it can argue it is making a fresh start and will gain political capital from getting rid of the hated dictator. Given the weakness of designated successor, Gamal Mubarak, who is probably too weak to deal with the situation the regime might well be a lot better off. Yhe Obama administration is doing nothing.
On the other hand, the United States wants to show that it supports reform and democracy, believing that this will make it more popular among the masses in the Arab world as well as being the “right” and “American” thing to do. Also, if the revolution does win, the thought is, it is more likely to be friendly to America if the United States shows in advance its support for change.
Finally, the “pro-democracy” approach is based on the belief that Egypt might well produce a moderate, democratic, pro-Western state that will then be more able to resist an Islamist challenge. Perhaps the Islamists can be incorporated into this system. Perhaps, some say (and it is a very loud voice in the American mass media) that the Muslim Brotherhood isn’t really a threat at all.
As crowds filled Cairo’s Tahrir Square — waving Egyptian and Tunisian flags and adopting the same protest chants that have rung out in the streets of Tunis — security personnel changed tactics and the protest turned violent. Police blasted crowds with water cannons and set upon them with batons and tear gas in an attempt to clear demonstrators shouting “Down with Mubarak.” Remember the Iranian revolution when all sorts of people poured out into the streets to demand freedom? Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is now president.
Remember the Beirut spring when people poured out into the streets to demand freedom? Hizballah is now running Lebanon.
Remember the democracy among the Palestinians and free elections? Hamas is now running the Gaza Strip.
Remember democracy in Algeria? Tens of thousands of people were killed in the ensuing civil war.
It doesn’t have to be that way but the precedents are pretty daunting. The Obama administration is doing nothing.
Thousands of anti-government protesters clashed with riot police Tuesday in the centre of Cairo to demand the end of Hosni Mubarak’s nearly 30 years in power. Three people were killed in confrontations around the country. After a day of violence, thousands of demonstrators stood their ground in downtown Cairo’s vast Tahrir Square, steps away from parliament and other government buildings. They promised to camp out overnight, setting the stage for an even more dramatic confrontation. Throughout the day, police blasted crowds with water cannons and set upon them with batons and acrid clouds of tear gas in an attempt to clear demonstrators crying out “Down with Mubarak” and demanding an end to Egypt’s grinding poverty, corruption, unemployment and police abuses. Tuesday’s demonstration, the largest Egypt has seen for years, began peacefully, with police showing unusual restraint in what appeared to be a calculated strategy by the government to avoid further sullying the image of a security apparatus widely criticized as corrupt and violent. The Obama administration is doing nothing
As Egypt collapses, other nations in the Middle East will be impacted by the lack of security. Obama said Friday evening he spoke with Mr. Mubarak and told him to refrain from violence and take “concrete steps” to advance the rights of Egyptians. “This moment of volatility has to be turned into a moment of promise,” he said. Friday’s demonstrations turned increasingly violent as the day progressed, as legions of black-clad riot police met protesters with tear gas and rubber bullets. Defying a nationwide curfew as night fell, protesters took over government vehicles, broke through security cordons to mass on Cairo’s central Tahrir Square and set fire to the nearby headquarters of the ruling party.
We see the Emptysuit is doing what he does best, NOTHING!
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