Video: Obama goes all-in for Egyptian democracy

posted at 4:21 pm on February 11, 2011 by Allahpundit

National Journal has the transcript. I was expecting praise for the protesters tempered by warnings about “gradual” change, the importance of “stability,” and so on. Nope. This was a love letter to democracy, little different from what Bush would have said at his most glowing moment of neoconservative idealism. The strategy over the past few weeks, I thought, was to hedge between support for liberal reform and support for Mubarak as a U.S. ally in order to reassure Jordan, Yemen, and the Saudis that we won’t dump them too the minute they run into trouble. Are we now telling them that, if push comes to shove, we will dump them? Or, as Greenroomer Karl suggested on Twitter, does this prove my point from last night that U.S. influence in the Middle East is now so minuscule that no one, including regimes allied with America, much cares what the hell O says publicly anymore? That may actually be the rosier of the two possibilities here — that America matters so little to the region that we’re basically goof-proof. Terrific.

The one nod at “stability” in this is his praise for the Egyptian military, the head of which — and new de facto leader of Egypt — is defense minister Mohamed Tantawi. I speculated yesterday that there must have been a power struggle shortly before Mubarak’s speech; well, now we know who won.

Suleiman gave a brief statement on Egyptian state-owned television announcing that Mubarak had formally stepped down and assigned the “higher council of the armed forces to run the affairs of the country.” In a telling indicator of the new power hierarchy, the primary spokesman for Egypt’s armed forces was standing directly behind Suleiman as the vice president announced the military council had supplanted him as the country’s top authority.

“This gives us a bit more insight into what happened yesterday: there was some kind of power struggle going on, and Tantawi won,” said Joshua Stacher, an Egypt expert at Kent State University who lived in the country for nine years. “Omar Suleiman isn’t in control anymore. This is now a military government.”

Gates has called Tantawi five times since the protests began and Mike Mullen has spoken to his counterpart, Sami Enan, four times, so there’s a third possibility for why O said what he said today. When push comes to shove, the U.S. won’t support the people or their oppressor; they’ll support the military, the ultimate keeper of the peace in the region. Can’t see how that doesn’t make the Saudis, Jordanians, et al. nervous, and of course it reduces what Obama says here about popular sovereignty to near-farce, but oh well. We’re too deep in the weeds of hypocrisy for rhetoric to matter much anymore. Exit question via the Anchoress: Where was this speech when the Green Revolution first got going in Iran?

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I have a hard time understanding the logic thrown around. This is a military dictatorship replacing military dictatorship.

HotAir is the only place I see a dose of reality.

antisocial on February 11, 2011 at 6:17 PM

Have to get one of those new Obama-Speak Dictionaries.

Military Coup = Democracy

Wow. I didn’t know that.

Yes, Mubarak came from the same place, Defense Minister.

Sort of like plaid shirts. Back after 30 years.

I sure hope we don’t get some of that “democracy” here in the good ole’ USA. The tanks would tear up the streets something awful.

IndieDogg on February 11, 2011 at 6:22 PM

More ObaMao admin idiocy:

Ambassador to the UN, Susan Rice, thinks that the US should be doing more, giving more to the UN. More one-worlder crap being suggested to bleed our country dry?

Get this administration out of our lives.

onlineanalyst on February 11, 2011 at 6:37 PM

There is a 50/50 chance the outcome will be favorable to the U.S. and the world. I will take the pessimistic view and declare this regime change as unfavorable. For those of you that are not interested in preserving the American culture and our sovereignty, I guess you can view the resignation of Mubarak as favorable.

While I wasn’t particularly fond of Mubarak, he had no choice but to keep the Muslim Brotherhood and it’s followers in check, much like Saddam Hussein corralled the Shi’a Islamist influence before he was toppled. By managing to keep the Muslim Brotherhhood as a non-factor in the peace accord between Egypt and Israel for over 30 years, Israel could count on Egypt to be somewhat neutral regarding regional conflicts with other nearby nations. Now, the cat has been let out of the bag.

While democracy for the majority of Egyptians will be the goal of this takeover, that isn’t necessarily a positive outcome for all Egyptians. Democracy to Muslims doesn’t necessarily mean democracy to non-Muslims. Living under strict Islamic laws with one state religion for all, without freedom of other religions, is the stated goal of Islam around the globe. Today Egypt, tomorrow the world.

I humbly submit that Egypt will soon be ruled by the Muslim Brotherhood and under strict Sharia laws. It will only be a matter of a few months before Obama will travel to Egypt and pledge millions, perhaps billions, of U.S. taxpayer dollars to begin the “healing process” between the Egyptian Muslims and the U.S. I also believe that Egypt will soon declare war with Israel after the money has been transferred.

The only concern for the U.S. at this moment is to stop the spread of Islam in America and to begin harnessing all available domestic energy sources. We must “cut the umbilical cord” to the energy sources coming from the Middle East and get out of the business of interfering with the affairs of other nations, particularly in the Middle East. We must insist that Muslims in the U.S. will always be subject to the laws of our American justice system and Constitution. We must never allow Muslims to live and abide by the system and laws of Sharia in America, not now or ever..

I challenge HotAir and it’s readers to “rally ’round the flagpole” and bring America back to the patriots and lovers of our cherished traditions and time-honored values. If thousands upon thousands of screaming, fanatical Egyptians, calling for the death of Israel and the West, can drive Mubarak from office, surely the patriots in the United States of America can drive Obama and the progressive leftists out of office in 2012. Long live American patriots, tea-party members and all others who love or country!

metroryder on February 11, 2011 at 6:38 PM

Buy gold. Buy silver. Buy food.

We propped up the Mubarak “dictatorship” for 30 years. Now, suddenly, he’s a dictator (TM), because the starving people of Egypt felt the effects of quantitative easing. And now the preferable alternative is a military junta?!! The Federal Reserve is yanking Egypt’s chain; and yanking Obama’s chain. Protect yourself and your family. Buy real assets. Stop buying Chinese junk and paper equities with Bernanke Bucks. Egypt is coming to America.

shawk on February 11, 2011 at 6:45 PM

onlineanalyst on February 11, 2011 at 6:37 PM

saw this earlier…you’ve got to be kidding me…the audacity is mindboggling…

cmsinaz on February 11, 2011 at 6:50 PM

“Let me make this clear, there are no enemies to the left.”

pedestrian on February 11, 2011 at 6:54 PM

Obama is for the Muslim Brotherhood, but against the

lilium on February 11, 2011 at 6:55 PM

“Let me make this clear, there are no enemies to the left.”

pedestrian on February 11, 2011 at 6:54 PM


cmsinaz on February 11, 2011 at 6:58 PM

Better question.

As Rush said today. Why are the Egyptian people so good, and so brave for wanting better for their country, and themselves, and non violently protesting for it. Yet…when the Tea Party formed…they became Tea Baggers?

He did stand for his Muslim brothers today…did he not? Because he sure as he!! didn’t stand with American citizens, as their President.

capejasmine on February 11, 2011 at 9:57 PM

I must be watching too much Beck, but why does Obama love this revolution (against our ally) but ignore the Iranian revolution (against our enemy) and decry the revolution in Honduras (against a leftist)?

PattyJ on February 12, 2011 at 11:48 AM

I must be watching too much Beck, but why does Obama love this revolution (against our ally) but ignore the Iranian revolution (against our enemy) and decry the revolution in Honduras (against a leftist)?

PattyJ on February 12, 2011 at 11:48 AM

For much the same reason Obama defends the building of a Ground Zero Victory mosque, but attacks and condemns an Israeli’s right to build a home in Jerusalem.

Roy Rogers on February 12, 2011 at 1:38 PM

I think Saakashvili just ate his tie.

ace tomato on February 12, 2011 at 4:29 PM

I couldn’t watch or I probably would have lost my supper….It is strange that he didn’t care about democracy a year and a half ago when the people of Iran were demonstrating and longing for backup from the U.S., and Obama said he didn’t want to meddle in politics…That is because there was already a muslim fanatic in power….

theaddora on February 12, 2011 at 7:24 PM

At the end of the day, Obama sat it out and then supported the winner after the game was over.

I want to see what he is going to do about Iran Yemen. Algeria.

ace tomato on February 12, 2011 at 8:21 PM