Posts Tagged ‘Hosni
Marc Lynch (ForeignPolicy.com): …This was an unprecedented victory for the Egyptian people, and at last a vindication of the Obama administration’s patient and well-crafted strategy.
There is no question that the first, second and third drivers of this Egyptian revolution were the Egyptian people. The creativity of the youth and their ability to mobilize a wide range of Egyptian society around a common demand against daunting odds are simply an inspiration. The fact that these massive crowds avoided violence under incredibly tense conditions and under great uncertainty speaks volumes.
…The Obama administration also deserves a great deal of credit, which it probably won’t receive. It understood immediately and intuitively that it should not attempt to lead a protest movement which had mobilized itself without American guidance, and consistently deferred to the Egyptian people. Despite the avalanche of criticism from protestors and pundits, in fact Obama and his key aides backed the Egyptian protest movement far more quickly than anyone should have expected.
Their steadily mounting pressure on the Mubarak regime took time to succeed, causing enormous heartburn along the way, but now can claim vindication. By working carefully and closely with the Egyptian military, it helped restrain the worst violence and prevent Tiananmen on the Tahrir – which, it is easy to forget today, could very easily have happened.
No bombs, no shock and awe, no soaring declarations of American exceptionalism, and no taking credit for a tidal wave which was entirely of the making of the Egyptian people – just the steadily mounting public and private pressure on the top of the regime which was necessary for the protestors to succeed.
The Obama administration also understood from the start, and has consistently said, that removing Mubarak would not be enough. It has rejected “faux democracy,” and pushed hard for fundamental systemic reforms….
By the way, for those keeping score in the “peacefully removing Arab dictators” game, it’s now Obama 2, Bush 0. The administration has been subjected to an enormous amount of criticism over the last two weeks for its handling of Egypt, including by people inspired by or who worked on the previous administration’s Freedom Agenda. It was also attacked sharply from the left, by activists and academics who assumed that the administration was supporting Mubarak and didn’t want democratic change. In the end, Obama’s strategy worked. Perhaps this should earn it some praise, and even some benefit of the doubt going forward….
Marc Lynch is associate professor of political science and international affairs at George Washington University.
Full article here
President Barack Obama reviews his prepared remarks on Egypt at the Resolute Desk in the Oval Office, Feb. 11, 2011. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)
Text of speech here
Cairo, February 11, 2011
Thank you Sarah for the link to the photos
President Obama watched Hosni Mubarak’s speech to Egyptians from the conference room on Air Force One, White House press secretary Robert Gibbs tells the pool. Obama is now headed to the White House for a meeting with his national security team, moments after Mubarak said he wouldn’t step down but that he had given some powers to his vice president.
NPR: The U.S. threw its weight behind nascent reforms led by Egypt’s new vice president as Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said Saturday that international support was crucial to prevent extremists from hijacking the political transition.
A “perfect storm” of economic woes, repression and popular discontent could destabilize the Middle East beginning in Egypt, said Clinton, lending strong backing for Vice President Omar Suleiman’s efforts.
…President Barack Obama called German Chancellor Angela Merkel, British Prime Minister David Cameron and also spoke with Crown Prince Mohammad bin Zayed Al Nahyan of the United Arab Emirates, a U.S. ally in the Gulf, to help coordinate Egypt policy.
A man holds a portrait of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak reading ‘No You Can’t (copying Barack Obama’s famous ‘Yes We Can’) during a protest against Mubarak’s regime, following Friday prayers at the Beyazit square in Istanbul on February 4
Egyptian anti-government protesters gather at Cairo’s Tahrir Square on February 4 during ‘departure day’ demonstrations to force President Hosni Mubarak to quit
An anti-government protester, near Tahrir Square in Cairo February 4, celebrates after hearing a rumor that Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak will resign
Egyptian newspaper under fire over altered photo
Egypt’s state-run newspaper has come under fire for altering a photograph to suggest President Hosni Mubarak was leading the Middle East peace talks. Al-Ahram showed Mr Mubarak walking on a red carpet ahead of US President Barack Obama as well as the Israeli, Palestinian and Jordanian leaders.
The original image, taken at the White House when talks were formally re-launched, shows Mr Obama leading the way and Mr Mubarak trailing behind.
The opposition 6 April Youth Movement has accused al-Ahram, Egypt’s biggest newspaper in terms of circulation, of being “unprofessional” for publishing the doctored image without mentioning the alteration. “This is what the corrupt regime’s media has been reduced to,” it said in a statement on its website, adding that the paper had “crossed the line from being balanced and honest”.
The independent daily, al-Masry al-Youm, reported that the state-run daily had “carried out surgery” on the photo “to show Mubarak leading and the rest behind”.
Al-Ahram has since replaced the image on its website with a picture of the assembled leaders seated on chairs in the Red Sea resort. Officials at the paper could not be reached for comment.