Whilst the US will strive to ensure that a government friendly to imperialism and neocolonial interests will continue in Egypt, P. J. Crowley defined the stance of the US early after the beginning of the mass demonstrations in Tahrir Square and elsewhere in Egypt.
‘We are monitoring the situation in Egypt closely. The United States supports the fundamental right of expression and assembly for all people. All parties should exercise restraint, and we call on the Egyptian authorities to handle these protests peacefully.
As Secretary Clinton said in Doha, people across the Middle East – like people everywhere – are seeking a chance to contribute and to have a role in the decisions that will shape their lives. We want to see reform occur, in Egypt and elsewhere, to create greater political, social, and economic opportunity consistent with people’s aspirations. The United States is a partner of Egypt and the Egyptian people in this process, which we believe should unfold in a peaceful atmosphere.
We have raised with governments in the region the need for reforms and greater openness and participation in order to respond to their people’s aspirations – and we will continue to do so.’
Initially the Israel FM said “We are closely monitoring the events, but we do not interfere in the internal affairs of a neighboring state.”
‘Israel expects the Egyptian government to weather the protests roiling the country and to remain in power, an Israeli Cabinet minister said Thursday, providing Israel’s first official assessment of the crisis affecting its powerful southern neighbor.’
‘Eli Shaked, a former Israeli ambassador to Cairo, said it is in Israel’s interest for Mubarak’s regime to survive since the alternatives, ranging from an Islamic government to the secular opposition, would be far less friendly to the Jewish state.
“I am very much afraid that that they wouldn’t be as committed to peace with Israel, and that would be bad for Egypt, bad for Israel and bad for the U.S. and the West in general,” he said.’
Once Nutanyahoo determined a racist angle would be most powerful, off he went. (I really loathe quoting Judith Miller at Foxnews, but still)
‘Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu spoke to Mubarak by phone early in the crisis, the Israeli press reported, assuring him of Israel’s continuing support. Netanyahu, breaking almost a week of silence about the mass protests and riots sweeping Egypt, on Monday warned Islamic extremists could well fill a political vacuum and threaten the peace between the two nations.
And we now have a divergence appearing in the US ranks, with ex-CIA special US envoy Wisner spouting a more Israel friendly line, to the annoyance of Crowley:
‘Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak must stay in power for the time being to steer changes needed for political transition, U.S. President Barack Obama’s special envoy for Egypt said on Saturday.
“We need to get a national consensus around the pre-conditions for the next step forward. The president must stay in office to steer those changes,” Frank Wisner told the Munich Security Conference.
State Department spokesman Philip Crowley said Wisner “didn’t coordinate” his comments with the administration, and he was not in officially representing the U.S. following his trip to Cairo ‘
‘He said the United States can’t force anything on Mr. Mubarak, but said that “what we can do is we can say, the time is now for you to start making change in that country.”’
Is the US is having a bet each way? Certainly, they are certainly dithering.
If the US cut off military aid, would the army immediately side with the people whom they should be defending and not the regime?
It’s extremely dangerous imho for dissenters if either Mubarak or Suleiman or another of the NDP camp continue to lead until elections are held, as these strongmen thenwould have ample opportunity to crack down further. There would also be more potential for the forthcoming elections to remain sham or be delayed and for opposition parties to be repressed and banned once more. All for in the name of ‘stability and security’, of course.
Emboldened by concessions from the regime and admant upon Mubarak’s departure, the protestors remain in Tahrir Square for the week of resistance. Obama is realistic about the Muslim Brotherhood though does not demand Mubarak leave immediately. Hillary Clinton channels Crowley’s earlier statements about Wisner:
The US President yesterday described the Muslim Brotherhood as well organised with strains of anti-US ideology, but dismissed the group as just one faction. “They don’t have majority support in Egypt,” Mr Obama said.
Optimistic about Egypt’s future after days of turmoil, the President said he was confident the US could work with the country’s next government after elections. “What I want is a representative government in Egypt,” he told Fox News’s Bill O’Reilly. “I have confidence that if Egypt moves in an orderly transition process, we will have a government in Egypt that we can work with together as a partner.”
He stopped short of saying Mr Mubarak should quit immediately, as protesters demand, but insisted transition start now.
“Egypt is not going to go back to what it was,” he said. “The Egyptian people want freedom. They want free and fair elections. They want a representative government. They want a responsive government.”
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton rushed to distance the administration from comments by former US envoy to Egypt Frank Wisner, who delivered a message on Mr Obama’s behalf urging Mr Mubarak to step aside only a week ago.
Mr Wisner created confusion when he said Mr Mubarak’s leadership remained “utterly critical” during the transition and that he should remain in office until September. Mrs Clinton said Mr Wisner “does not speak for the American government. He does not reflect our policies, and we have been very clear from the beginning we wanted an orderly transition.”
From Israel, continued snorts of approbation bellow from the politeratti with Dore Gold comparing the US thrust to their reactions during the overthrow of the Shah.
“Massive demonstrations were being held in the streets of Tehran, calling for the ouster of the shah, who had been America’s key ally in the Persian Gulf.
“The White House did not know quite what to do: back the shah or seek his replacement,” he wrote, warning the Obama administration not to “repeat the errors” it made by failing to back an ally facing protests, in the name of democracy.
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Report: German intelligence agents arrested in Cairo
The World Turned Upside Down
The Egyptian mirror
US special envoy to Egypt recalled due to ties with Mubarak regime
Palestine / Israel Links
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