Friday, January 28, 2011

Obama Caused the Revolts in Egypt

For several years, the United States has given Egypt billions for the promotion of democracy. We believed that if we ensured Egypt's financial dependence on us, they would be forced to listen to our recommendations about installing democracy. Because those efforts have failed for decades, Obama began to pull funding from Egypt to invest it in more worthwhile prospects.

The United States still heavily supports the Egyptian military with around $1.25 billion per year. However, we used to give $45 million to programs for Governing Justly and Democratically.  Under Obama, it dropped to $20 million.

In the past few days many Egyptians Tweeted about the reasons for their protest and how poor things have gotten recently.  They blame President Mubarak for the deteriorating economy and conditions. They recognize his increasingly brutish tactics used to squelch independent thought and individual success. Coupled with the overthrow of their next door neighbor's dictator in Tunisia, the Egyptians feel quite empowered to reform the government in the way they see fit. I'm not saying it's a good thing.  It's too early for that. Based on the funding cuts by Obama, Jordan was predestined to protest and possibly revolt.

If Obama was truly committed to democracy in Egypt he would cut funding to the Egyptian Military as well.  After all, President Mubarak will inevitably use them against the protesters (I just heard that he has called them in).

I'm intrigued by all the events that led to this and how they will turn out.  I'm far from convinced that the overthrow of two semi-secular dictatorships and replacing them, almost certainly, with yet another Muslim theocracy will lead to anything more sanguine in the Middle East.

3 comments:

  1. It appears that Obama is an unintentional genius or he understood that the Egyptian military was going to act as a moral intermediary, but when Mubarak ordered the soldiers to kill protesters and roll over them with tanks, the military refused and became a sympathetic ally to the protesters. http://www.americablog.com/2011/02/mubarak-ordered-tiananmen-style.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed:+Americablog+(AMERICAblog)

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  2. Sheer raving nonsense.

    For an example of how we support democracy, see this article:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Covert_United_States_foreign_regime_change_actions

    We've popped up tyrants like Mubarak all over the world since World War II.

    As said by the twice Medal of Honor decorated Marine Corps Major General Smedley Butler:

    "I spent 33 years and four months in active military service and during that period I spent most of my time as a high class muscle man for Big Business, for Wall Street and the bankers. In short, I was a racketeer, a gangster for capitalism. I helped make Mexico and especially Tampico safe for American oil interests in 1914. I helped make Haiti and Cuba a decent place for the National City Bank boys to collect revenues in. I helped in the raping of half a dozen Central American republics for the benefit of Wall Street. I helped purify Nicaragua for the International Banking House of Brown Brothers in 1902-1912. I brought light to the Dominican Republic for the American sugar interests in 1916. I helped make Honduras right for the American fruit companies in 1903. In China in 1927 I helped see to it that Standard Oil went on its way unmolested. Looking back on it, I might have given Al Capone a few hints. The best he could do was to operate his racket in three districts. I operated on three continents."

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  3. id, I disagree with yours and General Butler's assessment of America. We have our interests front and center, sure. We've done horrible things, as have all nations. But we've entered into military conflicts twice in the past 20 years that have gained us nothing--Cosovo and Libya. We donated considerably more money to post-WWII mine-removal in Europe that all other countries combined. We've given more time, resources, money, personnel, relief, aid, and supplies than ANY OTHER COUNTRY THAT HAS EVER GRACED THE PLANET.

    If you want to talk about America's considerable flaws, we can do that. We'd probably agree on some of them, but to categorically cast the United States as the world's villain is intellectually dishonest. That's a mighty broad brush with which you're painting.

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