News / Middle East

US Criticized by All Sides in Egypt

US Criticized by All Sides in Egypti
X
July 10, 2013 7:03 PM
Egypt is in the top five countries that receive aid from the United States, getting an average of 2 billion dollars a year since Cairo signed a peace treaty with Israel in 1979. Most of that aid goes to Egypt's military. But both sides in Egypt - those who support the military's ouster of Islamist leader Mohamed Morsi and those against the army's action - are criticizing the U.S. government and President Barack Obama for what they say is a lack of support in their fight for democracy. Sharon Behn has more from Cairo.
TEXT SIZE - +
Sharon Behn
— Egypt is in the top five countries that receive aid from the United States, getting an average of $2 billion a year since Cairo signed a peace treaty with Israel in 1979. Most of that aid goes to Egypt's military. But both sides in Egypt - those who support the military's ouster of Islamist leader Mohamed Morsi and those against the army's action - are criticizing the U.S. government and President Barack Obama for what they say is a lack of support in their fight for democracy.

On the streets of Cairo many are angry over Washington's inaction as to whether the military's ouster of President Mohamed Morsi was a coup - an important legal distinction that would affect U.S. aid to the country.

Typical is the view of Cairo coffee shop owner Hajj Hosni Mahmoud, who says Egypt doesn't need the United States.

“America or any other [country] has nothing to do with us. We are free in our country, be it with America or without it, with Obama or anyone else. We care about our country and we do not need their aid, let them have their aid, we don’t want it, we only want our nation. Obama, Obama, let Obama keep the aid for themselves," said Mahmoud.

The United States says it does not support any particular political group in Egypt's current upheaval.

But Washington's continuing ambiguity angers Egyptians. One group celebrating in Tahrir Square made that clear by chanting, “Crazy America, we don't need your aid.”

When the U.S. recognized and worked with Morsi, the legitimately-elected Muslim Brotherhood candidate, people like Mahmoud Badr, who founded the Tamarod (rebellion) grassroots campaign that sought Morsi's overthrow, feel Washington sided with the Islamist movement.

“So how come the U.S. administration was and is supporting the Muslim Brotherhood? We are very surprised and strongly condemn it," said Badr.

On the other side of Cairo, the Muslim Brotherhood is equally critical of Washington.

President Barack Obama should have denounced what was a military coup of a democratically-elected president, said Mohamed Soudan, a top official of the Brotherhood's political wing, speaking to VOA from the Egyptian city of Alexandria.

“It's very clear in the constitution of the United States, they should keep supporting the legitimacy, supporting the democracy, but now we are not seeing this very clear, it's not clear," said Soudan.

For now, condemning the United States is the only thing the two sides of the political divide here seem to agree on.

You May Like

Multimedia Anti-Keystone XL Protests Continue

Demonstrators are worried about pipeline's effect on climate change, their traditional way of life, health and safety More

Thailand's Political Power Struggle Continues

Court gave Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra until May 2 to prepare her defense over abuse of power charges but uncertainty remains over election timing More

Malaysia Plane Search Tests Limits of Ocean Mapping Technology

Expert tells VOA existing equipment’s maximum operating depth is around 6 kilometers as operation continues on ocean bed for any trace of MH370 More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Pet Kangaroo Helps Spread Environmental Messagei
X
Penelope Poulou
April 22, 2014 5:53 PM
Children’s author Julia Heckathorn travels the world to learn about different ecosystems and endangered animals. She pours her knowledge into children’s books, hoping the next generation will right the environmental wrongs of our times. As in many children's books, the main character in Heckathorn's stories is an animal. Unlike those other characters, though, this one is real - a kangaroo, that lives in the author’s backyard. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Pet Kangaroo Helps Spread Environmental Message

Children’s author Julia Heckathorn travels the world to learn about different ecosystems and endangered animals. She pours her knowledge into children’s books, hoping the next generation will right the environmental wrongs of our times. As in many children's books, the main character in Heckathorn's stories is an animal. Unlike those other characters, though, this one is real - a kangaroo, that lives in the author’s backyard. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Pro-Russian Separatists Plan 'Federalization Referendum' in Eastern Ukraine

Pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine say they plan to move forward next month with a referendum vote for greater autonomy, despite the Geneva agreement reached with Russia, the U.S. and Ukraine to end the political conflict. VOA's Brian Padden reports from the city of Donetsk in Eastern Ukraine.
Video

Video Pope Francis Hopes Dual Canonizations Will Reconcile Church

On April 27, two popes - John the XXIII and John Paul II - will be made saints in a ceremony at St. Peter’s Square. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky says the dual canonization is part of the current pope’s program to reconcile liberals and conservatives in the Roman Catholic Church.
Video

Video In Capturing Nature's Majesty, Film Makes Case for Its Survival

French filmmaker Luc Jacquet won worldwide acclaim for his 2005 Academy Award-winning documentary "March of the Penguins". Now Jacquet is back with a new film that takes movie-goers deep into the heart of a tropical rainforest - not only to celebrate its grandeur, but to make the case for its survival. VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports.
Video

Video Boston Marathon Bittersweet for Many Runners

Monday's running of the Boston Marathon was bittersweet for many of the 36,000 participants as they finished the run that was interrupted by a double bombing last year. Many gathered along the route paid respect to the four people killed as a result of two bombings near the finish line. VOA's Carolyn Presutti returned to Boston this year to follow two runners, forever changed because of the crimes.
Video

Video International Students Learn Film Production in World's Movie Capital

Hollywood - which is part of Los Angeles - is the movie capital of the world, and many aspiring filmmakers go there in hopes of breaking into the movie business. Mike O'Sullivan reports that regional universities are also a magnet for students who hope to become producers or directors.
Video

Video Pacific Rim Trade Deal Proves Elusive

With the U.S.-led war in Iraq ended and American military involvement in Afghanistan winding down, President Barack Obama has sought to pivot the country's foreign policy focus towards Asia. One aspect of that pivot is the negotiation of a free-trade agreement among 12 Pacific Rim nations. But as Obama leaves this week on a trip to four Asian countries he has found it very difficult to complete the trade pact. VOA's Ken Bredemeier has more from Washington.
Video

Video Autistic Adults Face Housing, Job Challenges

Many parents of children with disabilities fear for the future of their adult child. It can be difficult to find services to help adults with disabilities - physical, mental or emotional - find work or live on their own. The mother of an autistic boy set up a foundation to advocate for the estimated 1.2 million American adults with autism, a developmental disorder that causes communication difficulties and often social difficulties. VOA's Faiza Elmasry reports.
AppleAndroid