JERUSALEM — President Barack Obama's response to the crisis in Egypt is drawing fierce criticism in Israel, where many view the U.S. leader as a political naif whose pressure on a stalwart ally to hand over power is liable to backfire.
Critics – including senior Israeli officials who have shied from saying so publicly – maintain Obama is repeating the same mistakes of predecessors whose calls for human rights and democracy in the Middle East have often backfired by bringing anti-West regimes to power.
"If there are elections like the Americans want, I wouldn't be surprised if the Muslim Brotherhood didn't win a majority, it would win half of the seats in parliament," he told Army Radio. "It will be a new Middle East, extremist radical Islam."
Mubarak fears chaos if he quits:
Optimistic Egyptians say free elections, if they ever happen, would produce a vibrant democracy.
Pessimists say that the removal of the police state would lead to chaos - which would be exploited by Egypt's jihadi groups. These have been suppressed ruthlessly by the Mubarak regime.
These (pro-Mubarak) protests were organized by the government and the ruling National Democratic Party," analyst Kamal Zakher told CNN. The government mustered government workers and lawmakers whose seats are threatened, he said.
The whole objective is actually to give the impression that there is still support for Mubarak and to force the demonstrators out of Tahrir Square," Shahin said. He said the embattled president "is presenting a very difficult choice before the Egyptian people -- either liberty or security -- and he is hoping that they will choose security at the expense of liberty."
So what are your thoughts/opinions?
What do you think will come out of this? What stance do you believe the US should take?