Nicholas Burns served in the Bush administration’s Department of State, rising to Undersecretary of State during Secretary of State Condolezza Rice’s tenure. On Fox today, Shep Smith interviewed Burns about the unrest in Egypt, and asked him for his sense of Mohamed ElBaradei. Burns actually lauds ElBaradei as “bright,” “very intelligent,” “serious,” and “forward thinking,” adding that he could become the “face of the opposition” in Egypt.
ElBaradei’s tenure at the IAEA, in which he thwarted US policy against Iran, went unmentioned. If Burns is as good as we can get from the US diplomatic corps, well, God help us. There seems to be an establishment consensus that ElBaradei is a viable alternative to Mubarak. That’s only true if you don’t mind the Muslim Brotherhood with which ElBaradei is allied taking over the Arab world’s most important country, controlling the Suez Canal, and going eyeball to eyeball with the Israelis.