News / USA

Obama: History Unfolding in Egypt

United States supports an 'orderly and genuine transition' to democracy in Egypt, says Obama

President Barack Obama speaks at Northern Michigan University in Marquette, Michigan, February 10, 2011
President Barack Obama speaks at Northern Michigan University in Marquette, Michigan, February 10, 2011

President Obama says the United States supports an orderly and genuine transition to democracy in Egypt. The president spoke during a brief visit to the U.S. state of Michigan where he promoted a National Wireless Initiative mentioned in his State of the Union Address.

The president's statement about fast-moving events in Egypt came at the top of his remarks at Northern Michigan University, where he traveled to promote a National Wireless Initiative.

The local government headquarters is set on fire by protesters, claiming delays on requests for housing in Port Said, Egypt, February 10, 2011
The local government headquarters is set on fire by protesters, claiming delays on requests for housing in Port Said, Egypt, February 10, 2011

With television screens showing tens of thousands of people in Cairo preparing for a speech by Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, Obama said the world is watching history take place as the Egyptian people demand change.

"It is a moment of transformation that is taking place because the people of Egypt are calling for change," he said. "They have turned out in extraordinary numbers, representing all ages and all walks of life, but it is young people who have been at the forefront, a new generation, your generation, who want their voices to be heard."

The president said the United States wants young people in Egypt and all Egyptians to know that America will continue to do everything to support an orderly and genuine transition to democracy.

Earlier, Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said Obama and his advisers were watching developments as they occurred. Obama received a telephone briefing earlier from National Security Adviser Tom Donilon.

After his remarks about Egypt, President Obama spoke about the inter-connectedness of the world and his initiative to bring high-speed broadband access to 98 percent of Americans.

Comparing the United States to South Korea, where he said more than 90 percent of homes have high-speed broadband, the president said "the lights are still off" in one third of American households.

Obama said high-speed wireless service will spark new innovation, investments and ultimately help create jobs.

"This is not just about a faster internet or being able to friend someone on Facebook. It is about connecting every corner of America to the digital age," he said. "It  is about a rural community in Iowa or Alabama where farmers can monitor weather across the state and markets across the globe.  It is about an entrepreneur on Main Street with a great idea she hopes to sell to the big city," continued Obama, "it is about every young person who no longer has to leave his hometown to seek new opportunity - because it is right at his fingertips.

The president compared his National Wireless Initiative to a call by John F. Kennedy who, while campaigning for president in Michigan in 1960, spoke about the importance of America being first.

He tempered his message about the need to, in his words, "up our game" and "win the future" with another reminder of steps he has taken to cut down on unnecessary and wasteful government spending.

 

Obama again mentioned his call to freeze annual domestic spending over the next five years, to the lowest level as measured against Gross Domestic Product (GDP) since the Eisenhower administration.  But the president said spending should not be reduced in key areas that will help create jobs and grow the economy in the long run, such as education, innovation and infrastructure improvements.  

NEW: Follow our Middle East reports on Twitter
and discuss them on our Facebook page.

You May Like

Israelis Quietly Expand Enclave in Palestinian District of Jerusalem

Estimated 500 settlers, armed or protected by paramilitary police, live in Silwan among 50,000 Palestinians More

Video US, Iran Face Similar Challenges in Syrian Fight Against IS

Both Washington, Tehran back fighters battling Islamic State militants in Iraq -- but in Syria they support opposing sides in country’s civil war More

China Boosts Efforts to Help Afghan, Regional Stability

Observers say China’s increased regional involvement are due to concerns that Afghan instability and the presence of anti-China militants in Pakistani border areas could fuel Xinjiang troubles More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Lawi
X
William Ide
October 20, 2014 10:23 AM
China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video Ebola Orphanage Opens in Sierra Leone

Sierra Leone's first Ebola orphanage has opened in the Kailahun district. Hundreds of children orphaned since the beginning of the Ebola outbreak face stigma and rejection with nobody to care for them. Adam Bailes reports for VOA about a new interim care center that's aimed at helping the growing number of children affected by Ebola.
Video

Video Latinas Converting to Islam for Identity, Structure

Latinos are one of the fastest growing groups in the Muslim religion. According to the Pew Research Center, about 6 percent of American Muslims are Latino. And a little more than half of new converts are female. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti travelled to Miami, Florida -- where two out of every three residents is Hispanic -- to learn more.
Video

Video Nigeria Agrees to Cease-Fire With Boko Haram

Islamist militant group Boko Haram and the Nigerian government have agreed to a cease-fire. The Nigerian government issued an order Friday, telling all military chiefs "to comply with the cease-fire agreement in all theaters of operations. Why now and the significance of the agreement are questions on some people’s minds. VOA's Mariama Diallo reports.
Video

Video Kobani Fighting Sends 400,000 Refugees to Turkey

The offensive by Islamic State militants against the northern Syrian city of Kobani has caused hundreds of thousands of residents to flee to Turkey. They receive help from Turkish authorities and individuals, but say much more is needed. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from the town of Suruc a few kilometers from the border.
Video

Video Exclusive: American Joins Kurds' Anti-IS Fight

The United States and other Western nations have expressed alarm about their citizens joining Islamic State forces in Syria and Iraq. In a rare counterpoint to the phenomenon, an American has taken up arms with the militants' Syrian Kurdish opponents. Elizabeth Arrott has more in this exclusive profile by VOA Kurdish reporter Zana Omer in Ras al Ayn, Syria.
Video

Video South Korea Confronts Violence Within Military Ranks

Every able-bodied South Korean male between 18 and 35 must serve for 21 to 36 months in the country’s armed forces, depending upon the specific branch. For many, service is a rite of passage to manhood. But there are growing concerns that bullying and violence come along with the tradition. Reporter Jason Strother has more from Seoul.
Video

Video Comanche People Maintain Pride in Their Heritage

The Comanche (Indian nation) once were called the “Lords of the Plains,” with an empire that included half the land area of current day Texas, large parts of Oklahoma, New Mexico, Kansas and Colorado.The fierceness and battle prowess of these warriors on horseback delayed the settlement of most of West Texas for four decades. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Lawton, Oklahoma, that while their warrior days are over, the 15,000 members of the Comanche Nation remain a proud people.
Video

Video Turkey Campus Attacks Raise Islamic Radicalization Fears

Concerns are growing in Turkey of Islamic radicalization at some universities, after clashes between supporters of the jihadist group Islamic State (IS) or ISIS, and those opposed to the extremists. Pro-jihadist literature is on sale openly on the streets of Istanbul. Critics accuse the government of turning a blind eye to radicalism at home, while Kurds accuse the president of supporting IS - a charge strongly denied. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Syrian Defector Leaks Shocking Photos of Torture Victims

Shocking photographs purporting to show Syrian torture victims are on display at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington. The museum says the graphic images are among thousands of photographs recently smuggled out of Syria by a military policeman-turned-defector. As VOA reporter Julie Taboh reports, the museum says the photos provide further evidence of atrocities committed by the government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad against its own people.
Video

Video Drought-Stricken California Considers Upgrading Water System

A three-year drought in California is causing a water shortage that is being felt on farms and cities throughout the state. As VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports, water experts, consumers and farmers say California needs to make changes to cope with an uncertain future.
Video

Video TechShop Puts High-tech Dreams Within Reach

Square, a business app and card reader, makes it possible to do credit card transactions through cell phones. But what made Square possible? VOA’s Adrianna Zhang and Enming Liu have the answer.

All About America

AppleAndroid