The BBC is reporting that the Egyptian opposition is claiming “millions” of anti-Morsi protesters have taken to Cairo’s streets demanding his resignation. Mohammed Morsi, Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood president, was swept into office and assumed dictatorial powers after a contentious election following the country’s ouster of Hosni Mubarak in 2011. Protesters are not only angry with Morsi but also President Barack Obama for supporting the Egyptian leader.
The Obama administration attempted to discourage protests earlier in the week. Ambassador Ann Patterson said at a seminar on Tuesday organized by a Cairo research center, “Some say that street action will produce better results than elections. To be honest, my government and I are deeply skeptical,” adding, “Egypt needs stability to get its economic house in order, and more violence on the streets will do little more than add new names to the lists of martyrs.”
Questions about the relationship between the United States and Morsi’s Islamist government began to surface when Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood first visited the White House in the spring of 2012.
After publicly solidifying diplomatic ties to the Egypt’s long banned Muslim Brotherhood during the Brotherhood’s visit to the White House in April of 2012, White House Spokesman Tommy Vietor told Politico at the time, “The meeting Tuesday with working-level [national security staff] officials is just one in a series of meetings between US officials, members of Congress, and representatives of the Muslim Brotherhood,”
“Senators Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Sen. John McCain (R-AZ), and others have met with members of the MB during their visits to Egypt, and US officials, as part of their routine diplomatic outreach, continue to meet with representatives as well,” Vietor said.
The White House later announced it would give $1.5 billion in American taxpayer dollars to the Egyptian government that would be dominated by the Muslim Brotherhood, Andrew McCarthy at National Review reported. McCarthy later noted another report from the Investigative Project on Terrorism. According to IPT, the State Department “broke with normal procedures” and ordered the U.S. Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) not to conduct a secondary inspection on the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood’s Freedom and Justice Party (FJP) delegation that were en route to the United States.
This happened despite the fact that one member of the delegation had been implicated – though not charged – in a U.S. child pornography investigation, the Investigative Project on Terrorism (IPT) has learned.
According to senior enforcement sources and documents reviewed by the IPT, investigators had information tying Abdul Mawgoud Dardery to the pornography investigation that was based in Pennsylvania. He was the senior member in the four-person FJP delegation which held court with academic groups and met with senior officials at the White House and State Department last week. (For more on what they said, click here.)
It was not the first time the Obama White House opened its doors to controversial foreign visitors. In December of 2012 former Iranian Guard Commander reportedly Hadi Farhan al-Amiri visited the White House with Iraq’s Prime Minister leader, Nouri Al Maliki, when President Obama touted the end of the war in Iraq. According to the FBI, the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps played a role in a 1996 terrorist attack that killed 19 U.S. servicemen, the Washington Times reported.