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Obama: Egypt no ally but no enemy either
US president implicitly threatens Morsi government if steps are not taken to secure embassy and personnel inside, as clashes continue in front of Cairo-based embassy between protesters and riot police
AFP , Thursday 13 Sep 2012
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US Embassy In Cairo
Protesters destroy an American flag pulled down from the U.S. embassy in Cairo September 11, 2012. (Photo: Reuters)

Egypt is neither an ally nor an enemy of the United States, President Barack Obama said Wednesday in the wake of a violent protest at the US embassy in Cairo.

"I don't think that we would consider them an ally, but we don't consider them an enemy," Obama said in excerpts of an interview with Telemundo aired by MSNBC.

Obama commented after thousands of demonstrators tore down the Stars and Stripes at the US embassy in Cairo Tuesday in response to an amateurish anti-Islamic film made in the United States and reportedly promoted by a group of US-based Coptic Christians.

It preceded an attack on the US consulate in Libya that killed Washington's envoy to that country along with three other US citizens.

Egypt is led by President Mohamed Morsi, who was was elected the country's first Islamist leader in June following an uprising that toppled Hosni Mubarak early last year.

Worrying for Washington, Morsi's first reaction was not to condemn the attack on the US embassy but rather the film that provoked it.

"I think that we are going to have to see how they respond to this incident," Obama said.

"Certainly in this situation, what we're going to expect is that they are responsive to our insistence that our embassy is protected, our personnel is protected," Obama said.

"And if they take actions that indicate they're not taking those responsibilities, as all other countries do where we have embassies, I think that's going to be a real big problem."

Calling it a "work in progress," Obama said the new government was "trying to find its way" and noted it was democratically elected.

The interview is to be aired in full over the coming days. Telemundo and MSNBC are affiliated.





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harold lloyd
13-09-2012 09:26pm
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mr
A federal law enforcement official said Thursday that Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, 55, was the man behind "Innocence of Muslims," a film denigrating Islam and the Prophet Muhammad that sparked protests earlier in the week in Egypt and Libya and now in Yemen.
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bubba baxter
13-09-2012 09:00pm
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Right is Right
In the face of attacks on US land, another president said "countries either stand with us... or against us" Obamma says "let me see where the most votes are hiding and I will then decide if they are freind or foe" "Maybe lets wait till after the election and then I can make a decision" What a putz...
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3



Samantha Criscione
13-09-2012 08:18pm
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Obama suddenly discovers that his Morsi protege is not an ally? Please.
This is a manipulated situation, intended to improve the position of the Brotherhood in the region by ending its identification -- its ACCURATE identification -- as Western-sponsored. This mirrors what happened with Khomeini's Western-backed takeover of Iran. After Khomeini came to power with Western backing, the Iranian Mullahs encouraged the Embassy takeover in order to present themselves as anti-American. Similarly, in Egypt, the U.S. manifestly sponsored the Ikhwan takeover -- but now Obama suddenly says that Brotherhood-run Egypt is not an ally? This situation -- the protest and Obama's sudden fake hostility -- is an attempt to take the nationalism card away from liberal, leftist and other secular anti-Brotherhood forces, who repeatedly accused Clinton of sponsoring the Brotherhood's Morsi. --Samantha Criscione
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Samantha Criscione
13-09-2012 10:41pm
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Sorry, Kevin, things are not always what they appear
To Kevin: I am aware of the official narrative about Iran. However, as the many anti-regime Iranians I have spoken to know, the West IN FACT supported Khomeini in his seizure of power. The point of the embassy takeover and subsequent war of words was to create the impression among ordinary people that the U.S. and mullahs were mutually hostile. In fact, the U.S. has aided the mullahs in key ways -- for example, by destroying their principle enemy, Saddam Hussein; by removing the anti-mullah Taliban from power in Afghanistan; by cooperating with Iran in Bosnia; by turning Iraq from the Mullahs' lethal enemy to a their ally; and by removing the anti-Mullah Mubarak from power. To understand the real policies of states, one must go beyond words, which are sometimes deceptive, to the real affect of deeds. The U.S. has spent trillions on policies (e.g., the war in Iraq) which make no sense except as an attempt to aid Iran's rulers.--Samantha Criscione
Kevin
13-09-2012 08:38pm
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What?
Sorry to tell you this, but Khomeini came to power in Iran during the Iranian revolution and supported the take over of the US embassy. So he wasn't supported by the US. So you are wrong on that account. Additionally, 0bama administration did not take any sides in the Arab spring because they were utterly clueless as to what to do. There was never any support for the MB acension to power. The MB is labled as a terrorist organization. I don't know where you get your infromation from, but you are severly mis-informed.
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Samantha Criscione
13-09-2012 04:46pm
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Phony incident staged to alter perception of Morsi as U.S. puppet, which in fact he is
This is a manipulated situation, intended to improve the position of the Brotherhood in the region by ending its identification its ACCURATE identification -- as Western-sponsored. This mirros what happened with Khomeini's Western-backed takeover of Iran; after they backed Khomeini, the Mullahs encouraged the Embassy takeover in order to present themselves as anti-American. The U.S. manifestly sponsored the Ikhwan takeover -- but now Obama suddenly says they are not an ally? This is an attempt to take the nationalism card away from liberal and leftist anti-Brotherhood forces, who accused Clinton of sponsoring Morsi/Ikhwan. --Samantha Criscione
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hamash tinbakir
13-09-2012 11:51am
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Diplomatic Dictionary: Quick Reference
" if they take actions that indicate they're not taking those responsibilities, as all other countries do where we have embassies, I think that's going to be a real big problem." 1. actions indicating one is not taking responsibility = continue allowing or encouraging demos against our embassy 2. that's gonna be a big problem = forget about those year 1billion dollars.
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