US repeating Jimmy Carter's Iran bungle?
THERE ARE several similarities between US policy in 1979 toward Iran and its policy in 2011 toward Egypt. First, the Obama administration appears to be pursuing a policy of leaving all options open. Like Carter, Obama’s team has been indecisive in this crisis. Washington is not calling for Hosni Mubarak to resign, but it is not backing him and his government either. In fact, Obama’s tone toward Mubarak sounded surprisingly harsh, and even insulting. Obama disclosed in a press conference on January 28 that after hearing Mubarak’s speech to the Egyptian people, he told him over the phone that “he had a responsibility to give meaning to those words.” Obama insisted that the Egyptian leadership “take concrete steps” and not limit itself to rhetorical promises.