Egypt and Obama deserve each other

Both the U.S. president and the Tahrir Square revolutionaries believe that America is flawed in its essence. Photo: Wikimedia

JERUSALEM, July 6, 2013 — One thing that the events in Egypt this week prove beyond a reasonable doubt is that U.S. President Barack Obama’s worldview is utterly false.

That conclusion is obvious: America has long been despised by radical forces in the world for the very values it represents and upholds, not for the policies of one administration or another. Indeed, as is the case with anti-Semitism and anti-Zionism, anti-Americanism is hatred based on essence.


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Obama’s track record, as a follower of radical activist Saul Alinsky in his youth, in his presidential electoral platform, and in his performance for the past four and a half years, shows that his attitude towards the country he “leads from behind” is a mixed bag. On the one hand, he believes it is essentially flawed. On the other, he blames the foreign policy of his predecessors for any enmity accrued.

This is why he made it his first priority as president to engage in outreach to the Muslim world. His own upbringing in Indonesia, from which he carries “fond memories” of the chanting of imams, was one reason for his empathy, if not affinity, to Islam. Another was his 20-year affiliation with a church whose blatantly anti-Semitic pastor, the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, reinforced his sentiments.

It is not clear whether he understood the events of 9/11 in this context. But he certainly viewed its aftermath — the outbreak of what he and others called “Islamophobia” — to be a disease that needed eradication. And he was going to be the guy to come up with the cure.

He thus made a pilgrimage to the Middle East, stopping first in Saudi Arabia, where he literally bowed down to the king. He then went to Egypt, where he verbally bowed before the entire Muslim-Arab world. This he did from the podium of Cairo University on June 4, 2009.


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In what would come to be called the “Cairo speech,” Obama made sure to avoid distinctions between radicals and non-radicals, between Sunnis and Shiites, between terrorists and anti-terrorists, between groups allied with Iran and those attempting to be extricated from its stranglehold. He was determined not to make the “mistake” of his nemesis, George W. Bush, or of his more distant predecessor, Ronald Reagan, each of whom had called on the world to choose between good and evil. 

“We meet at a time of tension between the United States and Muslims … fed by colonialism,” he announced to his audience, which did not include then Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak. Mubarak had decided not to show up when he learned that most of the attendees would be members of the Muslim Brotherhood.

“Violent extremists have exploited these tensions in a small but potent minority of Muslims. The attacks of September 11th, 2001 and the continued efforts of these extremists to engage in violence against civilians has led some in my country to view Islam as inevitably hostile not only to America and Western countries, but also to human rights,” he explained.

Due to his chief concern that the West should not make sweeping, prejudicial judgments due to 9/11, Obama asserted that he had “come here to seek a new beginning between the United States and Muslims around the world.”


SEE RELATED: Egyptian demonstrations force change, back military intervention


After waxing poetic about Islam’s major contribution to science and culture, he went on to laud its humanitarianism.

“Islam has demonstrated through words and deeds the possibilities of religious tolerance and racial equality,” he said. “(It) has always been a part of America’s story. … Since our founding, American Muslims have enriched the United States. And I consider it part of my responsibility as President of the United States to fight against negative stereotypes of Islam wherever they appear …

“Freedom in America is indivisible from the freedom to practice one’s religion,” he continued. “That is why there is a mosque in every state of our union, and over 1,200 mosques within our borders. That is why the U.S. government has gone to court to protect the right of women and girls to wear the hijab, and to punish those who would deny it. So let there be no doubt: Islam is a part of America.”

He concluded, “(A)ny world order that elevates one nation or group of people over another will inevitably fail … Islam is not part of the problem in combating violent extremism — it is an important part of promoting peace … (and) no system of government can or should be imposed upon one nation by any other … America does not presume to know what is best for everyone …”

A year and a half later, riots erupted all over Egypt, resulting in Mubarak’s ouster. Obama sat on the sidelines as Mubarak was imprisoned. He praised Egypt’s “Facebook Revolutionaries” and hailed its “democratic elections” — the ones that gave the Muslim Brotherhood an overwhelming parliamentary majority and its party chief, Mohammed Morsi, the presidency.

But this week, the people of Egypt took to the streets to protest Morsi’s year in office. This is more due to the poor economy than to other factors, such as the curbing of freedom and civil rights. We know this because Morsi is now being treated to the same kind of abuse that was heaped on Mubarak, and only anti-Morsi media outlets are being allowed to operate in Egypt.

Obama must have been stunned when he saw all the anti-American banners being waved in Tahrir Square, most of which attacked him personally as a “fascist” and a “terrorist.”

He had done nothing but support these people’s choice of leader at the ballot box. He had continued to shower financial and military aid on them, no strings attached. How could they possibly hate America now?

The only answer is that Obama and the Egyptian “revolutionaries” deserve each other.


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Ruthie Blum

 Ruthie Blum is a pull-no-punches, conservative, Israeli-American columnist for Israel Hayom,  and the author of “To Hell in a Handbasket: Carter, Obama, and the ‘Arab Spring.’”

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