Posted on | November 23, 2012 | 19 Comments
Headline from the New York Times:
So, Obama supported the “democratic” uprising that toppled the U.S.-friendly dictator Mubarak and brought to power Morsi, who now assumes dictatorial powers, and we are led to ask, “What was the point of ‘Arab Spring,’ anyway?” If all that has been accomplished is to substitute a new dictatorship for the old dictatorship, how does the Obama administration claim that its policy advanced the cause of democracy?
From such questions, other questions naturally arise, e.g., How is the Obama administration’s “pro-democracy” policy different than the Bush administration’s “pro-democracy” policy? and, Why do we give a damn whether the Egyptians have democracy or not?
Meddlesome busybodies and utopian idealists — to the extent that these are separate categories — may accuse us of cynicism for asking these questions, but it’s difficult to understand how any of them can describe the effects of Obama’s policy in Egypt as a success. Perhaps a good time to re-read Jeanne Kirpatrick’s seminal 1979 article in Commentary, “Dictatorships & Double Standards.”