Did Obama Cut a Faustian Deal with Morsi?
What did Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi get in return for supporting the cease fire? The idea that Morsi, a strong supporter of Hamas, just went along with the Obama program out of conviction that the Obama team had the compelling case strikes me as naïve. There had to be bargain of some sort. Obama wants something from Morsi and Morsi gets nothing in return? I see one possible alternative that Morsi agreed to support Obam's current policy in return for Obama's support of Morsi's future policy in Egypt, and back Egypt as a power broker in the Middle East.
The crux of a Faustian deal is bargaining away the future for present gain - selling one's soul (the future) for worldly (present) success. For the Obama administration this became support our policy now in the conflict between Israel and Hamas and we'll support ($$) your policy in the future?
Here is Secretary of State Clinton last Wednesday at a Cairo press conference praising the first part of the deal, "I want to thank President Morsi for his personal leadership to de-escalate the situation in Gaza and end the violence."
Is Morsi now following up on the second part of the deal by ramping up his bid for total power - dictatorship - in Egypt? Moreover, the Obama administration and its apologists seem red-faced over the Faustian deal.
State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said Morsi's actions go against the "the aspirations of the revolution" in 2011 that led to the ouster of longtime President Hosni Mubarak. Compared to the Egyptian street which has exploded in protests and charges that Morsi is trying to set himself up as a new "Pharaoh," this is mild criticism indeed.
Even Obama apologist and New York Times foreign policy analyst, Tom Friedman, is lamenting the Faustian deal, "President Obama has to be careful not to sell out Egyptian democracy for quiet between Israel and Egypt and Hamas. We tried that under Mubarak. It didn't end well."
The Obama administration and its apologists can protest and lament all day and try to save face but how can the Obama administration back out of such a deal? Morsi could cut the leash on Hamas.
There may be another explanation for the timing of Morsi's power grab. If so, I'd like to hear it.