In ObamaWorld, as at Big Rock Candy Mountain, the handouts grow on bushes, climate change is the only problem and
the Unicorns all strive to help
Under Good King Obama’s historic presidency, all will soon be splendid for the Egyptians and everyone (except his enemies) — if they obey Him. What could go wrong?
Here, via the Counter Jihad Report and courtesy of the Egyptian military, is a video of the June 30th protest marches taken from military helicopters with large Egyptian flags suspended beneath.
The protests on Sunday were, obviously, massive and today — after an ultimatum for President Morsi to go issued by the protesters had expired — they continued substantially unabated. Meanwhile, several Egyptian ministers, including the Foreign Minister, have resigned and others seem likely to do so. President Morsi may take the Muslim Brotherhood down with him or the Brotherhood may take him down with it. Either way, he most likely has to go. According to an article at Alarabiya,
The Muslim Brotherhood had the chance to govern Egypt after winning elections fair and square a year ago.
But instead of governing and protecting all Egyptians as their civil responsibility and civic duty dictate, the Muslim Brotherhood divided, polarized and proved beyond any doubt that political Islam — just like militant Islam — will never be inclusive. As a consequence, it will never be accepted in the mainstream without major concessions and multiple metamorphoses. In addition, President Mursi wasted the momentum of the revolution and allowed problems to fester all the while pretending the situation is rosy unable to admit his presidency’s weaknesses or pitfalls. [Emphasis added.]
Might the highlighted words above suggest that President Obama likes the Brotherhood because it resembles his own style of governance?
Political Islam is fundamentalist and exclusive by nature. It survives and thrives on animosity and persecution. It feeds off of the underdog sentiment and it attracts certain masses around it, controls them and directs them any which way it wants: To the streets when needed or to the ballot boxes. With one order, a custom-tailored audience can be activated. It can grow from small to large to fit the size needed for any given event. They can also be manipulated to be violent or peaceful based on the need of its leadership. The problem of Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood is not in the numbers it can and will produce on demand; its problem resides in its inability to “govern” fairly as it has proven in the past year it cannot represent more than its own beneficiaries. [Emphasis added.]
However, to see world affairs consistently with the Administration perspective, President Obama’s trip to Africa is far more important.
The White House reaction to the historic outpouring of Egyptians calling for the ouster of President Mohamed Morsi can be summed up as thus: Don’t turn attention away from President Obama’s heavily touted African tour.
. . . .
Still, the White House inundated reporters with fact sheets on Obama’s trade initiatives, health and power investments and efforts to combat wildlife trafficking in Africa, along with his new Young African Leaders Initiative.
Interesting perspectives have been abundant. Remember President Obama’s remarks in Cairo on June 4, 2009?
“. . . America is not — and never will be — at war with Islam. We will, however, relentlessly confront violent extremists who pose a grave threat to our security — because we reject the same thing that people of all faiths reject: the killing of innocent men, women, and children.” [Emphasis added.]
Many of the problems in the Middle East and elsewhere can be traced to that and similar perspectives.
According to the Fox News article linked immediately above, the Obama doctrine of “transitional Islamism” is not working.
President Obama’s vision for the Middle East is one in which Islamism serves as a transitional stage between authoritarian rule and liberal democracy.
. . . .
Obama’s Middle East doctrine, though, holds that under the oppressive yoke of authoritarian, secular governments propped up by the Cold War superpowers, legitimate political dissent was stifled. That means that the only place Obama could find an opposition to replace those tottering Cold War-era despots in Libya, Egypt and elsewhere was among those looking to establish Muslim governments.
But, these would be tolerant Islamists, we were told. Their promise of tolerance was secured in advance of providing the military, diplomatic and economic support that put them in power.
That doctrine has not worked in Egypt, Syria or Libya and its predecessor doctrine did not work in Afghanistan. A new approach, less based on fantasy and more based on reality, while needed, is unlikely to emerge.
An article at Ynetnews today suggests that
Egypt has entered a trap which, as of now, it cannot escape. The economic distress and the threat of religious coercion are causing the youngsters to take to the streets, but if new elections are held that will depose Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood, they may, after a short period of reorganization, return with renewed vigor and regain control over Egypt along with the Salafis and Jihadists. How? With mass protests and violence.
Unless Egypt’s economy experiences a surprising turnaround, it will become a failed state, like Somalia and Afghanistan. Regional and global history has shown us that the violent nightmares in failed states also affect neighboring countries. Some countries, such as Iran, exploit the lack of governance in failed states to set up terror groups that operate on their behalf. This is what has happened in Yemen, for example.
Islamist terror groups thrive in areas where there is no governance. Drug-trafficking and piracy are also rampant in the absence of a central government.
What about Turkey? Might the situation there soon come to resemble that in Egypt?
Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan is becoming more authoritarian by the day. His government has announced it will use every tool available to investigate and punish protesters, critics in the media, and social media users. Additionally, Ankara has started to openly threaten foreign websites such as Twitter and Facebook, hoping they will end up betraying their users.
Barry Rubin, probably the best mind studying the situation in the Middle East, has been following developments in Egypt closely. He does not seem to care for President Obama’s Brave New Fantasy world. Here are his most recent speculations, published yesterday:
1. The opposition has no incentive to get off the street because they want a coup. Remember this looks like the army is coming to their rescue and the statement was friendly toward them more than the regime.
2. The statement came from the army and not the government. So the army isn’t being the tool of the government here but an independent institution. In other words the government is just one of two factions for it.
3. Is the army going to become permanently unpopular by shooting down people, which it refused to do for Mubarak two years ago?
4. What will the government be? Probably either military or a cabinet of experts under an appointed technician. More daringly they could just pick someone they like and say he is a compromise president.
5. It is hard to believe that some Islamists will not take up arms and there could be a civil war, knowing this the army will be cautious. It could be quite bloody even if the Brotherhood surrenders.
6. Remember this is not utopia, the same old corrupt dictatorship will be in power but probably with more freedom. [Emphasis added.]
7. This doesn’t solve the country’s economic problems.
8. The army would hope that the United States will give support. Probably U.S. statements would say they America would like the return of democracy as soon as possible. Under a realpolitik U.S. government, it would rush loans and aid to show favoritism for a renewed non-Islamist regime. This president could punish the military for daring to seize power from a democratically elected president. [Emphasis added.]
9. The army regime would not want international friction. It would be reasonable toward Israel, would not help Hamas, and would be tougher in fighting Syria and Iran. Beyond the past, if Islamists fight the army might be in a war with Hamas since it would support the Islamist rebels!
10. The only alternative to the army taking power–directly or behind the scenes–is to force some changes on Mursi and make him broaden his coalition. This is hard to believe but might be possible. Remember the army does not want to take power and is still unhappy from last time it did so.
11. A good way out for the army is to work with the anti-regime courts and get elections voided. The courts are already scheduled to rule on the validity of the elections.
12. Supporters of the White House will soon start claiming that Obama planned this all deliberately. Let the Brotherhood get power and then let them fail and discredit themselves. Watch and see.
Here’s an update from Mr. Rubin. This sentence stands out: “Today there is no government in Egypt.”
According to DEBKAfile (I have generally found analyses there reasonably accurate, at around fifty to seventy percent).
US President Barack Obama and Chief of US General Staff Gen. Martin Dempsey intervened in the Egyptian crisis early Tuesday, July 2, in an attempt to save the besieged President Mohamed Morsi and his Muslim Brotherhood. Obama called the Egyptian president and Gen. Dempsey phoned Chief of staff Gen. Sedki Sobhi, hoping to defuse the three-way crisis between the regime, the army and the protest movement before it gets out of hand. [Emphasis added.]
The crash of Morsi’s presidency would seriously undermine the objectives of the Arab Revolt pursued by the Obama administration as the arch-stone of his Middle East policy. [Emphasis added.]
. . . .
Obama promised to back steps taken by President Morsi to show he is “responsive to the opposition’s concerns,” while Gen. Dempsey asked Egyptian generals to moderate their stand against the Muslim Brotherhood. The underlying message was that if they failed to do so, Washington might reconsider its $1.3 billion annual military assistance package which is the main source of income for the armed forces.
Heartened by the US president’s vote of support, Morsi, the Muslim Brotherhood and its Islamic allies, rejected the army’s ultimatum for resolving the country’s deadly crisis, saying it would sow confusion and ran contrary to the Egyptian constitution.
The DEBKAfile report is substantially confirmed here:
WASHINGTON (AP) — Fearing a political-military implosion that could throw its most important Arab ally into chaos, the Obama administration has abandoned its hands-off approach, delivering pointed warnings to the three main players in the crisis: Muslim Brotherhood President Mohammed Morsi, protesters demanding his ouster and the powerful Egyptian military.
U.S. officials said Tuesday they are urging Morsi to take immediate steps to address opposition grievances, telling the protesters to remain peaceful and reminding the army that a coup could have consequences for the massive American military aid package it currently receives. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak publicly about the delicate diplomacy that is aimed at calming the unrest and protecting Egypt’s status as a bulwark of Mideast stability.
The officials said Washington has stopped short of demanding that Morsi take specific steps, but has instead offered strong suggestions, backed by billions of dollars in U.S. aid, about what he should do to ease the tensions. Those include calling early elections, firing an unpopular prosecutor and expressing a willingness to explore constitutional change. The army has been told that the $1.3 billion in foreign military financing it receives each year from Washington could be jeopardized by a coup or the appearance of a coup.
“Democracy” and freedom are not always compatible.
“Democracy,” lacking the freedoms we associate with it, is not a worthwhile process. An article at Times-Swampland observed that President Obama’s “careful neutrality” and support for process rather than results has risks.
That process is democracy, and Obama is wary of seeming to force America’s will on the Arab world’s most populous country. “Our position has always been it’s not our job to choose who Egypt’s leaders are,” Obama added.
That careful neutrality comes with real risk, however. In country that remembers American tolerance of Mubarak’s repressive regime all too well, Obama is accused of turning a blind eye to Morsi’s power grabs and insularity. “We’re seen as being too forgiving of the undemocratic excesses of the Morsi government and dismissive of the opposition,” says the Century Foundation’s Michael Wahid Hanna. “That’s been damaging.”
In fact, many protesters—a broad term, given their varying social, political and economic agendas—were already wary of Obama, who only pushed Mubarak towards the exit after several days of massive protests and his regime’s thuggish response. In some quarters the wariness turned to outright hostility after the U.S. ambassador in Cairo, Anne Patterson, warned last month speech against more mass demonstrations. [Emphasis added.]
In another recent article about the mess in Egypt, Mr. Rubin wrote,
I wonder if one day people will write that President Barack Obama is remarkably inept at foreign policy. Readers often say to me: You talk of stupidity and incompetence but he is doing this on purpose.
Let me make this clear: you can have a bad policy and a bad strategy but make it look good. The point is that Obama policy is so obviously bad—having circles run around it by Iran; the shameful Benghazi affair; the love affair with the Turkish regime; Kerry behaving as if he’ll have peace in the Middle East next Thursday and he cannot understand why no one ever thought of this before.
The height of administration wisdom in the Middle East is as if the most useful book has been The Dummy’s Guide to Ventriloquism. [Emphasis added]
President Obama said,
“So, again, top priority: Making sure that our embassies and consulates are prepared for this wave of protests. Number two, we are supportive of freedom of speech and freedom of assembly inside of Egypt, but we would urge all parties to make sure that they’re not engaging in violence, and that police and military are showing appropriate restraint. And number three, how do we make sure that we get this political process back on track. And that’s a difficult and challenging situation. But Egypt is the largest country in the Arab world, and I think the entire region is concerned that if Egypt continues with this constant instability, that that has adverse effects more broadly.”
Political process?” What junk in strategic terms. Look, the Muslim Brotherhood wants to fundamentally transform Egyptian society. It wants to divide the society and set groups against each other. It wants to act in a way that undermines the already sick economy. It wants to thoroughly vilify its opponents but then demands “compromise” which means surrender. [Emphasis added.]
Surely Obama must be familiar with situations of that kind?
Only the Process matters. Damn the
torpedoes results! Full speed ahead!
As with “Palestine” vs. Israel, only the process matters to the Obama Administration. Results are inconsequential. Moreover, while the Obama Administration has been focusing on the Israel – “Palestinian” “peace process,” much of the rest of the Middle East has descended (ascended?) into chaos. An article published at the New York Times on July first opined,
The Israeli-Palestinian conflict, once a stark symbol and source of grievance in the Arab world, is now almost a sideshow in a Middle East consumed by sectarian strife, economic misery and, in Egypt, a democratically elected leader fighting for legitimacy with many of his people.
. . . .
Administration officials no longer argue, as they did early in President Obama’s first term, that ending the Israeli occupation and creating a Palestinian state is the key to improving the standing of the United States in the Middle East. The Israeli-Palestinian conflict is now just one headache among a multitude.
Like the “Palestine” (“President” Mahmoud Abbas, Hamas and other often hostile to each other Hamas factions) vs. Israel peace process, the Egyptian vs. Egyptian peace process has many different players with different and inconsistent positions.
Syria? Where’s that? What’s that? Who cares? Wherever it is, many fewer than all are going to be satisfied, which suggests that the peace processes must fail. Might President Obama’s position(s), or at least the likely results of his statements and actions, bring the already unstable Middle East even worse results than those He hath wrought in
his adopted country our United States? That would be at least consistent.
But at least everything, except for some trivial stuff, is great domestically.
It should not be surprising that the Obama Administration does not know up from down, left from right, right from wrong, true from false or even what it has been doing. As reported in the Washington Post,
Amid the cascading disclosures about National Security Agency surveillance programs, the top lawyer in the U.S. intelligence community opened his remarks at a rare public appearance last week with a lament about how much of the information being spilled was wrong.
“A lie can get halfway around the world before the truth gets its boots on,” said Robert Litt, citing a line often attributed to Mark Twain. “Unfortunately, there’s been a lot of misinformation that’s come out about these programs.”
The remark by Litt, general counsel for the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, was aimed at news organizations. But details that have emerged from the exposure of hundreds of pages of previously classified NSA documents indicate that public assertions about these programs by senior U.S. officials have also often been misleading, erroneous or simply false.
The same day Litt spoke, the NSA quietly removed from its Web site a fact sheet about its collection activities because it contained inaccuracies discovered by lawmakers.
. . . .
A remark by Litt’s boss, Director of National Intelligence James R. Clapper Jr., has perhaps drawn the most attention. Asked during a congressional hearing in March whether the NSA collected data on millions of Americans, Clapper replied, “No, sir.”
. . . .
Acknowledging the “heated controversy” over his remark, Clapper sent a letter to the Senate Intelligence Committee on June 21 saying that he had misunderstood the question he had been asked.
“I have thought long and hard to re-create what went through my mind at the time,” Clapper said in the previously undisclosed letter. “My response was clearly erroneous — for which I apologize.”
Beyond inadvertent missteps, however, an examination of public statements over a period of years suggests that officials have often relied on legalistic parsing and carefully hedged characterizations in discussing the NSA’s collection of communications.
But surely we can rely on the best and brightest in “our” intelligence community to ferret out the truth about what’s happening in Egypt, Palestine, Syria, Libya and in other troubled places. Our very survival may depend on their trade craft and wisdom! Should the Obama Administration give truth a chance? Of course not. It has only to avoid lying blatantly and “transparently” in its laudable efforts to keep
the nation safe the Administration afloat. Time lines? Cover ups? Don’t be silly. Everything inconsistent with ObamaTruth is mere self-serving conspiracy theorizing by far right cretins who are just laughing at our expense.
Not only do I buy that; I also know that the unfortunately deceased Mr. Ben Ghazi and his three compatriots agree as well; they told me so just last night when they stopped by for some rum and a pleasant seance. Remember: ObamaTruth will set us free!
It’s time to give Dennis Rodman a Nobel Peace Prize and to draft him as our new Secretary of State. We need more diversity and he probably couldn’t be less competent than Secretary Kerry. Either that or it’s time for at least eight more