When the Muslim Brotherhood came to power in Egypt, they bent over backwards to placate Washington. They said, more-or-less, the required things about Israel, and they promised to work with the United States. Nevertheless, it soon became clear that the government of Mohammed Morsi was losing the people -- at least, the people of Cairo. (Egypt presents us with one of those sticky situations in which the capital city and the rest of the nation sometimes act like two different countries.)
The protesters in the streets believed that the Obama administration favored Morsi until the end. But Al Jazeera suggests a very different scenario...
Documents obtained by the Investigative Reporting Program at UC Berkeley show the US channeled funding through a State Department programme to promote democracy in the Middle East region. This programme vigorously supported activists and politicians who have fomented unrest in Egypt, after autocratic president Hosni Mubarak was ousted in a popular uprising in February 2011.
The State Department's programme, dubbed by US officials as a "democracy assistance" initiative, is part of a wider Obama administration effort to try to stop the retreat of pro-Washington secularists, and to win back influence in Arab Spring countries that saw the rise of Islamists, who largely oppose US interests in the Middle East.
Activists bankrolled by the programme include an exiled Egyptian police officer who plotted the violent overthrow of the Morsi government, an anti-Islamist politician who advocated closing mosques and dragging preachers out by force, as well as a coterie of opposition politicians who pushed for the ouster of the country's first democratically elected leader, government documents show.
Washington's democracy assistance programme for the Middle East is filtered through a pyramid of agencies within the State Department. Hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars is channeled through the Bureau for Democracy, Human Rights and Labor (DRL), The Middle East Partnership Initiative (MEPI), USAID, as well as the Washington-based, quasi-governmental organisation the National Endowment for Democracy (NED).
A long time ago, William Blum identified the NED as a "trojan horse" for the CIA
NED's Statement of Principles and Objectives, adopted in 1984, asserts that,
"No Endowment funds may be used to finance the campaigns of candidates for public office."
But the ways to circumvent the spirit of such a prohibition are not difficult to come up with; as with American elections, there's "hard money" and there's "soft money".
As described in the "Elections" and "Interventions" chapters, NED successfully manipulated elections in Nicaragua in 1990 and Mongolia in 1996; helped to overthrow democratically elected governments in Bulgaria in 1990 and Albania in 1991 and 1992; and worked to defeat the candidate for prime minister of Slovakia in 2002 who was out of favor in Washington.
And from 1999 to 2004, NED heavily funded members of the opposition to President Hugo Chavez in Venezuela to subvert his rule and to support a referendum to unseat him.
Additionally, in the 1990s and afterward, NED supported a coalition of groups in Haiti known as the Democratic Convergence, who were united in their opposition to Jean-Bertrand Aristide and his progressive ideology, while he was in and out of the office of the president.
So once again, a change we would prefer to ascribe to the power of the people turns out to be a coup subtly engineered in DC. I suspected as much. If a real
revolution had occurred, there would have been blood.
Oddly enough, quite a few people have accused Morsi himself of being, in effect, a CIA puppet. See, for example, the stories here
. (No, I don't support those sites.)
So: How to make sense of all this? Did we put Morsi in only to take him out?
This piece from last year
contains a lot of nonsense, but it does reference a surprisingly accurate prediction ascribed to Elliott Abrams.
Elliot Abrams and other spokesmen for AIPAC and the Zionist lobby argue that Shafik's victory next month is not necessarily something Israel and the West should favour or work to arrange.
Abrams writes: 'If the Muslim Brotherhood's Mursi wins and he will, the Muslim Brotherhood will be in charge - and be forced to deliver. And when they fail, as they will, given Israel's key friends in the international business community, it will be absolutely clear who was to blame and this is good for Israel.'"
Y'know what's odd about this text? I've not been able to find any proof that Abrams actually said or wrote these words. The quotation seems to exist only in certain pro-Arab, anti-Israel websites.
I suspect that this Abrams quotation is bullshit. All the more surprising, then, to see a bullshit prophecy come true.