TribLIVE

| USWorld


 
Larger text Larger text Smaller text Smaller text | Order Photo Reprints

Obama takes flak over foreign policy

Daily Photo Galleries

By McClatchy Newspapers
Saturday, July 6, 2013, 4:48 p.m.
 

WASHINGTON — The military overthrow of the democratically elected government in Egypt, for decades America's most important Arab ally, has spurred a fierce debate about whether the Obama administration's Mideast policy has been too passive and ineffective.

President Obama declared that U.S. allegiance was to “democratic principles” when Egypt's military ousted President Mohamed Morsy on Wednesday, but critics charge that the White House made only halfhearted attempts to steer Morsy's increasingly authoritarian government toward democracy, rule of law and respect for human rights.

“They've been late and slow, and not taken these problems seriously,” Michele Dunne, a former State Department official and administration adviser on Egypt who heads the nonpartisan Atlantic Council's Rafik Hariri Center for the Middle East, said on Friday.

Obama repeatedly failed “to use leverage to ensure that Egyptian authorities adhere to democratic principles,” said the Project on Middle East Democracy, an advocacy group in Washington.

The critics, who include Democratic foreign policy stalwarts as well as Republicans, say the upheaval in Egypt, on top of the administration's inability to stem the civil war in Syria or persuade Iran to curb its nuclear program, adds a blot to Obama's foreign policy record.

President Obama on Saturday reiterated that the United States is not aligned with and is not supporting any particular Egyptian political party or group and again condemned the ongoing violence across Egypt.

Obama made those points during a telephone conference with the National Security Council about developments in Egypt, according to a statement issued by the White House.

 

 
 


Show commenting policy

Most-Read Nation

  1. Obama: U.S. re-establishing relations with Cuba
  2. $1.5B more a year — from fees tacked onto phone bills — earmarked for faster Internet
  3. Life on Mars? Methane offers tantalizing hint
  4. Dems push approval of up to 12 more judicial nominees
  5. Immigration agency chief OK’d
  6. NYC teenager a liar, not a penny stocks whiz worth $72M
  7. Bill to save tax breaks on its way to Obama’s desk
  8. AP sources: Cuba releases U.S. prisoner Alan Gross
  9. Senators vote to confirm Murthy as Obama’s choice for surgeon general
  10. ISIS does ‘the warm and fuzzy’ to attract women, doctors, accountants
  11. Hackers issue threat to cinemas
Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.