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

In China, Mixed Signals on Ebola Controls

How authorities are monitoring at-risk individuals remains unclear, including whether there are quarantines for Chinese health workers returning from West Africa More

Video Women Voters Anxious Ahead of US Elections

Analysts say if women are focused on national security, it could be bad news for Democrats More

Solar's Future Looks Brighter

New technology and dropping prices are contributing to a surge in solar power 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.
Women Voters Anxious Ahead of US Electionsi
X
October 31, 2014 4:10 AM
Public opinion polls show American voters are deeply dissatisfied with their government and anxious about threats from abroad. This is especially true for a key voting group both Republicans and Democrats are trying hard to win over: women. Analysts say if women are focused on national security, it could be bad news for Democrats, with majority control of the Senate at stake. VOA’s Cindy Saine looks at the crucial role women voters will play in deciding the elections.
Video

Video Women Voters Anxious Ahead of US Elections

Public opinion polls show American voters are deeply dissatisfied with their government and anxious about threats from abroad. This is especially true for a key voting group both Republicans and Democrats are trying hard to win over: women. Analysts say if women are focused on national security, it could be bad news for Democrats, with majority control of the Senate at stake. VOA’s Cindy Saine looks at the crucial role women voters will play in deciding the elections.
Video

Video Victorious Secularists Face Challenge to Form Government in Tunisia

Official results from Tunisia show the Islamist Ennahda party has failed to win the second free election since the so-called "Arab Spring" uprising in 2011. Ennahda, which handed power to a government of technocrats pending the elections, lost out to the secular party Nidaa Tounes. Henry Ridgwell reports from London that the relatively peaceful poll offers some hope in a volatile region.
Video

Video Africa Tells its Story Through Fashion

In Africa, Fashion Week is a riot of colors, shapes, patterns and fabrics - against the backdrop of its ongoing struggle between nature and its fast-growing urban edge. How do these ideas translate into needle and thread? VOA’s Anita Powell visited this year’s Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Africa in Johannesburg to find out.
Video

Video Smugglers Offer Cheap Passage From Turkey to Syria

Smugglers in Turkey offer a relatively cheap passage across the border into Syria. Ankara has stepped up efforts to stem the flow of foreign fighters who want to join Islamic State militants fighting for control of the Syrian border city of Kobani. But porous borders and border guards who can be bribed make illegal border crossings quite easy. Zlatica Hoke has more.
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 After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.

All About America

AppleAndroid