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Tags: newsmax cairo protests

Newsmax Egypt Source: Obama Out of Touch

Sunday, 30 January 2011 11:57 AM EST

The Egyptian people are increasingly tired of the Obama administration’s tepid response to the international call for President Hosni Mubarak to step down, a Newsmax source in Cairo says.

“If the U.S. is claiming to be the leader of the free world, now is the time to side with the Egyptian people,” said Ahmed, who lives in Cairo and has been speaking to Newsmax via landline since protests began six days ago. “Now is not the time for diplomacy, but for dramatic decisions.”

Ahmed, whose full name is not being disclosed by Newsmax to prevent any reprisals for him and his family, said President Barack Obama and U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton are losing credibility quickly and appear out of touch by not calling for Mubarak to leave immediately and let democracy take its course.

Egyptians have been watching news reports of American reactions to six days of protests. On Sunday, Hillary Clinton made the morning talk show circuit, calling the situation in Egypt “complex” and repeating the administration’s preference for a diplomatic solution to the crisis. She stopped short of calling for Mubarak to leave.

"What we're trying to do is to help clear the air so that those who remain in power, starting with President Mubarak, with his new vice president, with the new prime minister, will begin a process of reaching out, of creating a dialogue that will bring in peaceful activists and representatives of civil society to, you know, plan a way forward that will meet the legitimate grievances of the Egyptian people," Clinton said on CNN.

Ahmed said the U.S. has “significant” influence over Mubarak, who has ruled with the financial and political support of America for 30 years. If the U.S. asked him to go, the Egyptian people believe he will go. But he cautioned the U.S. from becoming “the last country to ask him to go.”

“It is ridiculous to see Hillary Clinton talk about freedom and democracy in her own campaign (for president in 2008) and then today talk about policy and stability,” said Ahmed. “I would like to ask her and Obama, what if Jimmy Carter was still ruling the U.S.? Would the American people tolerate a president in power for 30 years? Would you like Jimmy Carter in power in the name of stability? This is historic -- it is not about stability or politics or U.S. interests. It is about people getting a drop of freedom.”

Indeed, Mubarak came to power in October 1981, the year Jimmy Carter ceded the White House to Ronald Reagan, after the assassination of Anwar El-Sadat who negotiated the historic peace treaty with Israel. Before he entered politics, Mubarak was a career officer in the Egyptian Air Force, serving as its commander from 1972 to 1975.

In Cairo, Ahmed says there seems to be what he called a “pause” as both sides wait for the other to make a move. Military planes flew over downtown Cairo in an apparent show of force but did not fire on the crowds, as tanks and Army soldiers watched over and sometimes participated with demonstrations.

“We just don’t know what is going to happen,” he says. “Everyone in the country is very worried; the more Mubarak stays, the more the country will be prone to turn to bloodshed.”

Calling Mubarak’s rule “over,” Ahmed says the Egyptian leader appears out of touch, has lost legitimacy in his own country and the Arab world as more and more are calling for him to step down.

“Mubarak is over. There is no security force, there is no police, there is no parliament, and with internal and external powers asking him to leave, he can no longer rule,” says Ahmed. “He cannot go into a meeting now and pretend to lead Egypt. Why he won’t go…we don’t know.”

© Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

newsmax cairo protests
Sunday, 30 January 2011 11:57 AM
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