OBAMA’S CONFLICTING MESSAGES DURING THE 2011 EGYPT UPRISING (Timeline in Videos, Transcripts)
Posted by FactReal on February 15, 2011
|CONTRADICTIONS AND INCONSISTENCIES
Obama administration to Egypt: Mubarak is an ally…Mubarak has to transfer power now… Egyptians are determining their future…Mubarak must stay…include opposition groups like the radical Muslim Brotherhood…Mubarak must go yesterday…The Egyptian youth did it!
|January 25, 2011, Tuesday:
● Protests begin in Egypt.
● Obama doesn’t mention Egypt in his 2011 State of the Union address (Video).
(Transcript: h ttp://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2011/01/25/remarks-president-state-union-address)
● Secretary of State Hillary Clinton: “The Egyptian government is stable and is looking for ways to respond to the legitimate needs and interests of the Egyptian people.”
|January 26, 2011, Wednesday:
● Egyptian protesters confront police in Egypt (Video).
● Obama fails to mention Egypt during his visit to Orion Energy Systems, in Manitowoc, Wisconsin (Video).
(Transcript: h ttp://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2011/01/26/remarks-president-economy-manitowoc-wisconsin)
● Obama’s Press Secretary Robert Gibbs: “Egypt Is A Strong Ally.”
● Clinton to Egyptian government: Time for reform. Don’t block peaceful protests or communications:
|January 27, 2011, Thursday:
● Man shot in Egypt protest (Video).
● Obama: “Egypt’s been an ally of ours on a lot of critical issues”
|● Vice President Joe Biden: Mubarak an ally, not a dictator:
|January 28, 2011, Friday:
● Gibbs on US aid to Egypt: “We will be reviewing our assistance posture based on events that take place in the coming days.” (Transcript) Officials later say no such review is planned (see February 3, 2011).
● Mubarak offers reforms and fires his cabinet (Video).
● Obama to Mubarak: Take concrete steps and actions that deliver on that promise
|January 29, 2011, Saturday:
● Mubarak names new vice president, Omar Suleiman
● Despite Mubarak’s concessions, State Dept. spokesman PJ Crowley via Twitter: “The Egyptian government can’t reshuffle the deck and then stand pat.”
|January 30, 2011, Sunday:
● Clinton: “It’s not a question of who retains power. That should not be the issue.”
● Clinton: “We want to see an ORDERLY TRANSITION so that no one fills a void.” So “that there be a well thought-out plan that will bring about a democratic, participatory government.” “It is in the interest of the partnership that the United States has with Egypt so that is what we are attempting to promote and support.”
|January 31, 2011, Monday:
● Obama sends Frank Wisner as envoy to urge Mubarak not to run for re-election & to start an “orderly transition” of power.
● Obama admin. open to a role for Muslim Brotherhood in new Egypt government. [Video below, mark 8:20]
● But Gibbs says: US will stay out of Egyptian politics:
|February 1, 2011, Tuesday:
● Obama to Mubarak: Transition must begin NOW.
● But Obama also says: “It is not the role of any other country to determine Egypt’s future leaders. Only the Egyptian people can do that.”
● White House to Mubarak: Stay Put…Wait, We Don’t Take Sides…Uh, Hit the Road.
|February 2, 2011, Wednesday:
● Egyptian gov’t official says Obama’s calls for an “orderly transition” are at odds with his call for an immediate one.
The Egyptian government pushes back on “vague” statements from the Obama administration.
● P.J. Crowley says the U.S. isn’t dictating Egypt’s shift from Mubarak’s three decades in power.
● RINO John McCain: It’s Time for Egypt’s Mubarak to Step Down (Fox News Video: Part 1 | Part 2)
● Biden and Clinton made no specific call for Mubarak to resign immediately.
● But Gibbs on the transition says: “Now means yesterday – because when we said now we meant yesterday.”
|● Crowley on the Muslim Brotherhood being part of the political process: They are a fact of life in Egypt:
|February 3, 2011, Thursday:
● Leftist billionaire George Soros on Egypt: Muslim Brotherhood good, Israel bad; here is my money to reform Egypt.
● Crowley on reviewing U.S. aid to Egypt: “There’s no review ongoing at this time.”
(Transcript: h ttp://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/dpb/2011/02/155950.htm)
● Clinton condemns attacks on reporters; wants immediate negotiation on “orderly transition”:
● Democrat Senator Kerry to Mubarak: Start transition immediately…in coordination with opposition leaders. Democrat Senators John Kerry, Klobuchar, Cardin, Nelson (D-FL), Durbin, Levin and RINOs McCain and Graham sponsor Resolution 44 (S.RES.44), agreed to by voice vote, urging Mubarak to transfer power to an inclusive caretaker gov’t.
|February 4, 2011, Friday:
● Report: “U.S. and Egyptian officials discussed Mubarak’s immediate resignation in favor of VP Suleiman.”
● Obama contradictions: Egyptians will determine their future…but transition process must begin NOW.”
● Iranian leader Ali Khamenei calls upon Egyptian Army to join masses in ousting Mubarak (Video) .
|February 5, 2011, Saturday:
● Obama’s mixed messages on Egypt get worse.
● Obama’s envoy Frank Wisner: Mubarak must stay for now:
|● Clinton backs gradual transition in Egypt::
● Obama administration distances itself from Frank Wisner saying Wisner spoke in a private capacity, although he is Obama’s own envoy to Egypt.
|February 6, 2011, Sunday:
● Clinton walks Wisner out onto the plank, but agrees that an “orderly transition” will take some time.
Clinton: “We respect the many years of service that Frank Wisner has given to our country but he does not speak for the American government. He does not reflect our policies.” (Transcript: h ttp://m.state.gov/md156051.htm)
● Clinton refutes Obama – says Mubarak may need to stay on.
● Clinton on Mubarak’s latest concessions: “Those are significant actions…I think they have to be viewed as a very important set of steps being taken to keep the movement going in the direction that we seek.”
|● Obama continues contradicting himself and his team::
● Clinton on the Muslim Brotherhood: “I am not going to be pre-judging who should participate in their political process…What we want is to see an inclusive process.” (Transcript: h ttp://m.state.gov/md156051.htm)
● The Muslim Brotherhood, Egypt’s largest opposition group, supports “Islamist groups such as the Palestinian Hamas movement, which is on the U.S. terrorist list.”
|February 7, 2011, Monday:
● A confident Obama says: “Egypt has to negotiate a path and they’re making progress”.
● Gibbs agrees with Mubarak now: More time and deliberate approach are needed for a transition.
● Crowley doubtful: Egyptians have doubts about the process; the negotiations are not broad-based enough.
(Transcript: h ttp://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/dpb/2011/02/156137.htm)
● Gibbs dithers on the Muslim Brotherhood:
|February 8, 2011, Tuesday:
● Obama’s White House scrambles to regain message on Egypt
● GIBBS: “Less important is what we think and more important is what the people of Egypt think.” but then he calls for “immediate” and “irreversible” transfer of power.
(Transcript: h ttp://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2011/02/08/press-briefing-press-secretary-robert-gibbs-282011)
● Gibbs also labels as “particularly unhelpful” Suleiman’s comments to ABC that Egypt lacks the necessary “culture of democracy” for the changes demanded by protesters.
● Biden presses VP Suleiman for an orderly transition of power that is “prompt, meaningful, peaceful and legitimate.”
(Transcript: h ttp://www.america.gov/st/texttrans-english/2011/February/20110208154756su0.6855433.html)
● Biden prods Egypt to bring in the opposition during the transition and to immediately end emergency law.
● Biden’s push for “meaningful negotiations” contradicts the demands of protesters who say no real progress can happen unless Mubarak resigns.
● Egyptian military oppressing journalists.
● U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates praises the conduct of Egypt’s military and “they have done everything that we have indicated we would hope that they would do.”
(Transcript: h ttp://www.defense.gov/transcripts/transcript.aspx?transcriptid=4766)
● The praise for the military by Obama administration…appeared designed to buttress U.S. ties with a power broker whose role is expected to be key to whatever political order emerges in Egypt.
|February 9, 2011, Wednesday:
● Egyptian Foreign Minister: U.S. Is Trying to Impose Its Own Will:
● Obama administration abandons support for VP Suleiman’s transition process and escalates demands for “real, concrete” moves to speed the transition. Gibbs added: “I think if Vice President Suleiman continues to pepper his statements with — as he had two days…that we’re not ready to move toward democracy, not going to see anything change — it is clear, as the President has said, that Egypt is not going back to where it was. Nobody believes that. And unless or until the government broadens the negotiations with those in the opposition, unless or until that happens, the pressure for them to do so is only going to get greater.”
|February 10, 2011, Thursday:
● Director of National Intelligence James Clapper: Muslim Brotherhood “largely secular… has eschewed violence”:
● But former Muslim Brotherhood leader: Jihad is the way. Their national goal: Islamic world domination.
|● Deputy Secretary of State James Steinberg says US will ensure Israel security:
|● CIA director Leon Panetta fuels a news frenzy: Strong likelihood Mubarak will step down this evening
● Later Panetta says he had no CIA intelligence that Mubarak was stepping down – Panetta was echoing press reports.
● Obama contradictions: Obama demands more from Egypt leaders, but says Egyptian people determining their future.
(Transcript: h ttp://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2011/02/10/statement-president-barack-obama-egypt)
● Obama unsure: “We’re going to have to wait and see what’s going on.”
● Gibbs surprised: “We’re watching a very fluid situation…What we are looking for remains unchanged.” The president and his staff are watching developments from a conference room aboard Air Force One while en route to Michigan.
● Mubarak announces he will not step down
|February 11, 2011, Friday:
● Egyptian VP Suleiman announces Mubarak steps down.
● VP Joe Biden reacts in self-delusion: U.S. spoke with “one voice” about Egypt’s transition.
● Biden: “We have said from the beginning…that the future of Egypt will be determined by the Egyptian people.”
He calls the change of power a “pivotal” moment in Egypt’s history and says the transition must be one of irreversible change.
Change? Change for the better or for the worst?