Why Governor Palin Was Right on “Arab Spring”

In February, Governor Palin was on Hannity to discuss the role of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt’s new government following the ousting of President Mubarak. Governor Palin warned of the threats to human rights, women’s rights, freedom of religion, and to Israel if the Muslim Brotherhood were to get involved in the new government. She also sharply criticized any hint of President Obama encouraging the Muslim Brotherhood to have a seat at the table in negotiations to be part of the new government.

Fast forward to today, what many liberals and neoconservatives like Bill Kristol praised as an “Arab Spring” has really resulted in a fall of Egyptian freedom for Coptic Christians and for Egypt’s neighbor and our ally, Israel . The Obama administration approved of the potential of Muslim Brotherhood involvement in the Egyptian government since the nascence of the uprising. Earlier this month, US officials met with members of the Muslim Brotherhood, which were meetings that had been planned since June. Reuters quotes a US diplomat on the discussion:

“From our perspective it is important to be in touch with all of the emerging political forces here in Egypt, across the board, that are peaceful and committed to non-violence,” he said.

“It helps to understand Egypt and the way the political system is developing, and it helps us to deliver our message and get them to understand where we are coming from,” he added.

What has occurred as Egypt approaches its upcoming elections has not been “peaceful and committed to non-violence”, as the US diplomat has asserted.  In fact, Governor Palin’s warnings of what might happen if the Muslim Brotherhood were to seek greater involvement in Egypt’s new government have proven to be correct.Since the ousting of Mubarak, the military controlled government and an increasing probability of the Muslim Brotherhood’s involvement in the new government has caused even more chaos and violence both to Israel and to Egyptian Christians.  In September, militants attacked Egypt’s gasline to Israel for the sixth time since Mubarak’s ousting. Last month, after half a dozen Egyptian soldiers were mistakenly killed by Israeli soldiers in response to a Palestinian attack, Egyptians activists called for the expulsion of the Israeli ambassador and attacked the Israeli embassy in Cairo, injuring more than 1,000 and killing 3. Over this past weekend, twenty-six Coptic Christians were killed and nearly 500 wounded when they were simply attempting to engage in peaceful protest after church construction had been attacked by Islamists. The Christians feel the military leadership has been too lenient to the Islamists. As Governor Palin noted in February on Hannity, the Obama administration makes it a point not to use the phrase “Islamic extremists”. The word “extremists” may be left to the perception of individuals, but the Obama administration’s statement following these attacks failed to mention the role of Islamists at all in the lead up to these protests, calling instead for “restraint on all sides”.

Governor Palin’s statements last winter have proven her prescience on supposed “freedom” movements in the Egypt. Elected officials and current candidates would do well to pay attention, and political pundits, like Bill Kristol, who call Governor Palin’s foreign policy views “Obama lite” when he himself supported the same “Arab Spring” as President Obama, should take a look in the mirror.

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