The Corner

Krauthammer’s Take: On Egypt, ‘Obama the Bystander Again’

Charles Krauthammer had harsh words for the president’s response to the mass anti-government demonstrations taking place in Egypt: “Obama the bystander again. Here are the Egyptians in the millions, out on the street, trying to bring down an Islamist government — increasingly dictatorial, increasingly intolerant, arresting journalists and judgues, trying to Islamicize the military — and the people are saying, ‘No,’ and what does the president of the United States do?  He takes a position of studied neutrality; he says he’s not supporting either side.”

Krauthammer compared the Egyptian situation to that of Iran during the abortive Green Revolution of 2009, during which “the same thing happened . . . they were shouting ‘Obama, Obama, are you with us or against us?  And he took a position that was essentially support of the regime . . . . That was a shameful episode.” 

While Krauthammer acknowledged that Morsi had been democratically elected, he insisted that “The Brotherhood is not a democratic party . . . it’s a movement that has an ideology; its allegiance is Islam.”  He pointed out several examples of despots who came to power through democratic elections, including Vladimir Putin in Russia, Hugo Chávez in Venezuela, Hitler in Germany, and the Sandinistas in Nicaragua. 

NRO Staff — Members of the National Review Online editorial and operational teams are included under the umbrella “NR Staff.”


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