Clinton On Morsi's Views Of Jews: 'It's Not What Somebody Says; It's What They Do'
GRETA VAN SUSTERN, FOX NEWS: Is President Morsi, though, is he sort of with the program with us, or not? Because he said some horrible things about Israelis two years ago, and there’s some things printed today from one of his senior aides about – that the Holocaust didn’t exist. And so there’s very sort of suspicious things that he’s saying, and with all the turmoil, I’m wondering if he – is he with us or against us?
HILLARY CLINTON, SECRETARY OF STATE: Well, we were quite concerned about those statements. And the Egyptian Presidency repudiated them and reaffirmed a commitment to the Israel-Egypt peace treaty, which is, of course, absolutely core to everything that we hope to see happen in the Middle East. But you have to, I think, take a step back and look at the fact that the people now in power in these countries have never been in government, never had a chance to really learn how to run agencies or to make decisions. So we don’t certainly condone or in any way approve of what a lot of these leaders are doing or failing to do, but we also know how important it is that we try to avoid even more extreme elements which are active across the region, taking control of territory, even threatening a regime, where the people are often American-educated, have some ongoing commitment to make tough decisions. When I negotiated the ceasefire in Gaza with President Morsi, he was very involved. I’d obviously gone to Israel first, then I went to Egypt and we got it done. It’s still holding. So we have to keep pushing forward and yet call it like we see it when we think something is not appropriate, as we did with those statements.
SUSTERN: When you met him, did you have a sense that he was a good partner or someone that we could deal with, or do we have to sort of be very cautious with him?
SECRETARY CLINTON: I think he has a lot of the right intentions. Certainly in my long conversations with him, the many reports of meetings that I’ve received of other American officials, a recent congressional delegation, you do get the impression that he and the team around him are trying to deal with the economy that is in very bad shape in Egypt, the loss of foreign currency and investment and the tourism trade, the political reforms that are necessary. But the jury’s out, Greta. I’ve been around long enough, so it’s not what somebody says; it’s what they do. And some of what he’s done we have approved of and supported; and some of what he’s done, like abrogating a lot of power unto himself personally, reinstating emergency law provisions that had been a hallmark of the Mubarak regime, are very troubling. And we have a balancing act to do, as do the Egyptian people, as to how this is going to turn out.
30 Jan 2013
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