oao’s daily roundup:
Omri Ceren: What More Must Obama Do to Prove to Prove Anti-Israel Realignment?
There’s an argument to be made that dispatching Ross to J Street’s confab is a bad and unseemly idea, that it will look like the White House is forcing a respected diplomat to shuffle into a Canossa filled with feverish partisans, that it will feed the perception of a renewed White House public-relations offensive against the Israel, that it will reignite questions about whether the Obama administration owes favors to a lobby backed by obscure foreign donors.
Martin Kramer: So in “free” Tunisia, this Tunisian mob is “free” to hold an antisemitic demonstration outside the Grand Synagogue in Tunis, changing “Allahu Akbar” and “Khaybar, Khaybar, oh Jews! The army of Muhammad will return!” Filmed last Friday, so it’s reported―presumably after prayers. Who were those analysts who said Islamists in Tunisia were nowhere to be seen? Found ’em! March on Tunis Synagogue | YouTube
Bret Stephens: In 1979, Western thinkers were quick to call the Ayatollah Khomeini ‘moderate’ and ‘progressive.’ (MUST READ)
But that doesn’t mean the Brothers don’t have an idea of what they’re aiming for. “We think highly of a country whose president is important, courageous and has a vision, which he presents in the U.N., in Geneva, and everywhere,” the Brotherhood’s Kamal al-Hilbawi told Iran’s Al-Alam TV earlier this month, referring to Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s Holocaust and 9/11 denials. “We think highly of a country . . . that confronts Western hegemony, and is scientifically and technologically advanced. Unfortunately, these characteristics can be found only in the Islamic Republic of Iran. I hope that Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Tunisia will be like that.”
McClathcy: Egypt’s opposition fights itself as army tightens control
Three days after Hosni Mubarak’s resignation, Egypt’s political opposition was bitterly divided over its next moves as the army expanded its near-total control over the country with no overt signs that it’s included anti-government protesters in its decision-making.
A major meeting of opposition leaders and protesters on Monday quickly devolved into arguments and diatribes, underscoring how difficult it will be for the diverse, leaderless revolutionary movement to coalesce around a political platform before elections that Egypt’s military caretakers have pledged to hold.
Charles Levinson: ‘Brothers’ in Egypt Present Two Faces
The Muslim Brotherhood, the outlawed Egyptian Islamist opposition group is plagued by rifts between young and old, reformist and hard-liner, and between big city deal-making politicians, and conservative rural preachers.
Michael Mandelbaum: Can Egypt Become a True Democracy?
But will the political transition ultimately lead to democracy? We cannot know with certainty, but, based on the history of democratic government, and the experiences of other countries … we can identify the obstacles that Egypt faces, as well as the advantages it enjoys, in building political democracy … Elections without liberty do not constitute genuine democracy, and here Egypt faces a serious challenge: its best-organized group, the Muslim Brotherhood, rejects religious liberty and individual rights, especially the rights of women. The Brotherhood’s offshoot, the Palestinian movement Hamas, has established in the Gaza Strip a brutal, intolerant dictatorship.
EU Foreign Policy Chief Ashton on Egypt: ‘Everyone, Including the Muslim Brotherhood, Must Be Involved’
Catherine Ashton, 54, the European Union’s high representative for foreign affairs, discusses the resignation of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, the need for elections within a matter of weeks and how Europe’s own experience following the Cold War could help.
Jonathan Spyer: Lebanon and the limits of protest
Experience suggests the pro-Iran camp can continue to happily observe pro-US regimes in the region tear themselves apart.