The end of Obama’s Egypt amateur hour

Featured image David Goldman shows, among other things, that the Egyptian coup signals that Saudi Arabia, not the U.S., will have the leading foreign role in Egypt’s affairs going forward. At the risk of sounding unpatriotic, that’s probably a good thing for Egypt under the present circumstances. I have suggested, and Goldman goes a long way towards demonstrating, that the Egyptian turmoil is more about economics than politics. The Saudis might just »

A small, irrelevant America

Featured image In her weekly column Caroline Glick reviews the events of the past week in Egypt. Among other things, according to Glick, they reveal America’s “self-induced smallness.” Confirming a few points we have made here over the week and extending them to Morsi’s removal from power, Glick notes: US Ambassador to Egypt Anne Patterson and Obama remained the Muslim Brotherhood’s greatest champions as the forces began to gather ahead of this »

In Egypt, a huge setback for the alleged wave of the future

Featured image It turns out that President Obama isn’t any better at picking winning regimes abroad than he is at picking winning businesses at home. Today, the government of President Morsi, which Obama had supported almost unreservedly for a year, was toppled by the military in response to mass protests. Some will say that Obama didn’t pick the Egyptian regime, the people of Egypt did, in an election. But an American president »

Obama to Egyptian Protestors: Drop Dead

Featured image On the eve of our July 4 celebration of the Declaration of Independence, deep dish theoreticians can certainly go on about the problem of the concrete meaning of “consent” of the governed as it is expressed in the Declaration.  This abstract principle certainly has problems in reality: does someone “consent” to the principles and present government of the United States just because he is born here?  Casting votes in successive, »

Let’s not romanticize the Egyptian protests

Featured image The Egyptian protests that threaten the power of Mohammed Morsi, the nation’s Islamist president, are a very welcome development. But lest anyone conclude that all opposition to Morsi is benign, check out the photo accompanying yesterday’s New York Times article about the demonstrations, in which Morsi’s face appears inside the Star of David on the Israeli flag. Given Egypt’s parlous economic situation and inherent instability, is it far-fetched to hypothesize »

From “that’s not going to cut it” to mush from the wimp

Featured image The New York Times claims that, for the Obama administration, the current crisis in Egypt is “a replay” of the crisis of early 2011 when protesters demanded the ouster of Hosni Mubarak. According to the Times: Then, as now, Mr. Obama has moved gingerly, placing a call to President Mohamed Morsi late Monday evening with a message not unlike the one he delivered to his predecessor, Hosni Mubarak, two and »

This Can’t Wait for the Weekend Photo Roundup

Featured image No sooner do I post my thoughts and brief photo spread on the crisis in Egypt, than I find that the incomparable [insert additional obligatory but justly deserved superlatives here] Michael Ramirez nails the Egypt situation in cartoon form (the ash tray is an especially delicious detail): »

It’s Starting to Feel Like 1979

Featured image While Obama is off doing who knows what in Africa right now, the Middle East seems poised on a knife edge.  Between civil war in Syria, a prospective coup in Egypt that could lead to civil war, and serious unrest in Turkey (that could lead to civil war), we could wake up in three or six months to find the region in complete chaos or worse–maybe American hostages will complete »

The plot thickens in Egypt

Featured image I’ve been expecting the Egyptian military to demand that President Morsi reach some sort of accommodation with the anti-government protest movement. I wasn’t confident, though, this would happen right away. But today comes word that the military has issued an ultimatum to the government and, as I read its statement, to the opposition: resolve the current crisis that has generated massive protests or the military will announce its own solution. »

Big day of protests means a bad day for Morsi

Featured image If the protests throughout Egypt today were, in fact, a test of numbers, then the test didn’t go well for President Morsi. According to the Washington Post: [A]s each side sought to claim the nation’s majority, and thus the legitimacy, on Sunday, it was apparent that the president’s supporters were vastly outnumbered. And that, political analysts said, left a resolution to Egypt’s crisis hanging in uncertainty. In Cairo, again according »

“Wake Up, America!”

Featured image Massive protests and counter-protests are under way in Egypt. It is hard to be optimistic about events in that part of the world, but who knows? The course Egypt is on is unsustainable, as its economy is close to utter collapse. I don’t see how the current Muslim Brotherhood regime can stave off that collapse, so change of some sort seems inevitable. Perhaps it will be for the better. Meanwhile, »

In Egypt, a test of wills and of numbers

Featured image The battle between Sunni and Shiite will, I think, be the dominant theme in the Middle East for some time. But that doesn’t mean that the struggle between secularist and Islamist will have no sway in any portion of the region. To the contrary, we see such a struggle shaping up in Egypt now. The consequences have already been deadly and may well become more so on Sunday, when massive »

Regret this

Featured image We’ve been following the Egyptian government’s harassment of Bassem Youssef, the Arab world’s most popular television comedian, “for the supposedly criminal use of satire in jokes about President Mohamed Morsi and his Islamist political party,” as Robert Mackey and Kareem Fahim put it in this New York Times post. We posted the video of Jon Stewart’s critique of the Morsi government here. In an update Mackey and Fahim posted a »

Jon Stewart: Personal testimony (Updated with U.S. apology)

Featured image At the New York Times blog The Lede, Robert Mackey and Kareem Fahim report: The American comedian Jon Stewart’s criticism of the Egyptian government briefly escalated into a diplomatic incident on Tuesday, as the United States Embassy in Cairo shared a link to a “Daily Show” segment on Twitter, causing the office of Egypt’s president to react with anger. Mr. Stewart devoted the first 11 minutes of his program on »

A word from David Rieff

Featured image David Rieff is a principled man of the left whom I greatly respect. He last wrote in to comment on “R2P or not R2P.” Today he writes to comment on “Contain this” and Egypt’s food crisis: I actually share your skepticism about the Arab Spring, but having spent the last five years writing a book about the crisis of the global food system, I’d caution you that linking the food »

Contain this

Featured image I would like to think that the internal contradictions of Islamism will bring down regimes such as that of Egypt’s Mohammed Morsi. Today the New York Times reports on Egypt’s shortages of food and fuel, a story that David Goldman has cornered for quite a while. If only we were to impose appropriate conditions in return for the financial aid that we provide — and if only we sought to »


Featured image Were it not for a a single post at the Weekly Standard, Michelle Obama and John Kerry would have presented the International Women of Courage Award to Samira Ibrahim on Friday afternoon. This despite the fact that Ibrahim is a raging anti-Semite and celebrant of 9/11, including the Islamist observation of the anniversary at the American embassy in Cairo this past September. In Washington for the ceremony, Ibrahim first pleaded »