“The world has gone mad today, and good’s bad today.”
— Cole Porter, “Anything Goes”
Mad indeed. But let’s limit ourselves to two points.
First, the White House is now calling for a smooth transition in Egypt. In other words, after one week of not-so-gigantic demonstrations, President Barack Obama is openly calling for the downfall of a 60-year-old regime that has been allied with the United States for about 40 years in the most important country in the Arab world.
It’s one thing for the president to urge moderation, no violence, and efforts at compromise. It’s another to push the Egyptian government out of power and possibly usher in a new era of catastrophe for the Middle East and the world.
Couldn’t the U.S. government wait a bit and see what happens? Couldn’t it express public support for the regime and privately urge reforms and a change of personnel? Doesn’t it have any sense of the danger of anarchy or anti-American forces coming to power in Egypt?
Remember, it doesn’t have to be an Islamist regime. It can be an Islamist-radical nationalist government with a moderate front man. The outcome could make Iran’s revolution look like a picnic. While that last sentence is perhaps excessively alarmist, it is intended to wake up people from this daydream of Egypt becoming a stable, moderate, democratic state given the actual situation in Egypt.
Second, naivete has reached epidemic proportions. What sets me off here as an example is the Washington Post which, under the headline “Muslim Brotherhood says it is only a minor player in Egyptian protests,” tells us about this group. Of course, it says it is not important. Just as the Big Bad Wolf wore granny’s clothes — “All the better to eat you.” Why should the Western media pick up the revolutionary Islamists’ disinformation themes?
In fact, and I’m not exaggerating, the article tells us that the Brotherhood is no threat and accuses it of wimping out:
It is not the organization of radical jihadists that it is sometimes made out to be. But its caution in dealing with Mubarak has made it appear recently that it is more concerned with protecting itself than with improving the nation.
The article tells us two historical facts about the Brotherhood: it was inspired by the YMCA and was brutally repressed by the Egyptian government in the 1950s.
Sigh. And what does it leave out? That it seeks to transform Egypt into an Islamist state, reduce the Christians to third-class citizens (they are already second-class citizens), do away with rights for women, impose sharia law, drive America out of the Middle East, and wage a war of genocide against Israel.
Oh, and then there’s the history of the Brotherhood: it was financed by the Nazis from the 1930s on and tried to deliver Egypt to them in World War Two, used the Nazi weapons it had been given in 1942 to try to destroy Israel in the 1948 war, had a terrorist wing and assassinated a number of officials including an Egyptian prime minister, was repressed because it tried to kill President Gamal Abdel Nasser, supports terrorism not only against Israel but also U.S. forces in Iraq, and has a current leader who calls for a jihad against the United States.
Has anyone in the Western media or governments ever read anything from Brotherhood leaders’ speeches or publications? Apparently not. In fact, regarding the media I have seen zero evidence that it has any idea what these people say every day.
Let’s look at two cogent reactions to the situation. First, President Bashar al-Assad, dictator of Syria. Read this carefully: “Syria is stable. Why? Because you have to be very closely linked to the beliefs of the people. This is the core issue. When there is divergence…you will have this vacuum that creates disturbances.”
What does this mean? That if you line up with Iran, support revolutionary Islamism, and oppose the United States, you are going to be popular and strong since that demagoguery appeals to the masses. Do you think the oppositionists in Egypt are aware of that fact?
Let’s next listen to Avi Shavit of Haaretz, expressing not only what Israelis think but in this case also what all of the Arabs are thinking:
Obama’s betrayal of Hosni Mubarak is not just the betrayal of a moderate Egyptian president who remained loyal to the United States, promoted stability and encouraged moderation. Obama’s betrayal of Mubarak symbolizes the betrayal of every strategic ally in the Third World. Throughout Asia, Africa and South America, leaders are now looking at what is going on between Washington and Cairo.
Everyone grasps the message: America’s word is worthless; an alliance with America is unreliable; American has lost it. A result of this understanding will be a turn toward China, Russia and regional powers such as Iran, Turkey and Brazil….The second result of this insight will be a series of international conflagrations that will result from the loss of America’s deterrent power. But the general result will be America’s rapid disappearance as a superpower….The policy setback which Washington will experience will be no less dramatic than the regime debacle which Cairo is experiencing.
This is the course of the Obama administration and what I’ve been warning about since it took office. Now the moment of anti-glory has arrived. Who is dumb enough to want to be a U.S. ally under these conditions?
Let me stress that the Mubarak regime has been repressive and corrupt. It is understandable that the people of Egypt want more freedom and a better life. So did the people of Russia in 1917, those of Germany in 1932 (they had a republic but most of them hated it), those of Iran in 1978, and those in the Gaza Strip in 2006. One can only sympathize with their situation.
But we are tottering on the edge of catastrophe here and the Obama administration is pushing Egypt into the chasm.