Nytt

Hillary Clinton sa søndag at det var best at Hosni Mubarak ble sittende for at overgangen til et mer demokratisk styre kunne skje i ordnede former. Hun innrømmet at hun ikke hadde sjekket Egypts grunnlov.

Hvis Mubarak går av, vil nemlig presidenten for nasjonalforsamlingen ta over, og grunnloven foreskriver valg innen 60 dager. Det er nærmest en umulighet. Resultatet kan bli kaos.

Det har Clinton nå innsett og hun innrømmer at hun ikke har studert hva grunnloven sier, før de siste dager.

Det er et utrolig statement fra en politiker som har et stort byråkrati til rådighet. Både Barack Obama og Clinton har indikert at Mubarak burde gå nå, de har bare ikke villet si det offentlig. Nå har Clinton studert grunnloven og funnet ut at det ikke er så smart likevel.

Denne vinglingen er ikke overbevisende.

Det var det diplomatiske sendebudet Frank G. Wisner som først sa at det var uhyre viktig at Mubarak ble sitttende i overgangsperioden for ikke å utløse kaos. Clinton rykket umiddelbart ut og distanserte seg fra hans uttalelser. Nå sier hun det samme selv.

Citing the Egyptian Constitution, Mrs. Clinton said that if Mr. Mubarak stepped down now, Egypt would have to hold elections for a new president in 60 days — too little time for the government or the opposition to organize a credible vote.

Her comments, made to reporters on the way home from a conference in Munich, echo what administration officials have said privately and some of what the White House’s temporary diplomatic emissary to Cairo, Frank G. Wisner, said publicly on Sunday: Mr. Mubarak is likely to remain in the picture, at least a while longer.

Mrs. Clinton reiterated that Mr. Mubarak’s future was up to the Egyptian people and declined to discuss what role he should play between now and September, when Egypt is scheduled to hold an election in which he has said neither he nor his son Gamal will compete.

But Mr. Mubarak’s resignation now would set off a chain of events, Mrs. Clinton said. Under the Constitution — a document she conceded not having thought about before this week — the speaker of Parliament would step in as a caretaker president, followed by quick elections.

Realismen ser ut til å melde seg etter dager hvor administrasjonen har løpt etter begivenhetene. Opposisjonens krav fremstår som helt urealistiske:

She made no mention of the desired outcome frequently discussed by protest leaders: that Mr. Mubarak would step down, the Constitution would be suspended for a transition that could take up to a year, the current Parliament would be unseated and then new elections would be held.

Det er altså Mubarak og Omar Suleimans standhaftighet som reddet situasjonen, ikke USA. Det er tankevekkende, og vil bli lagt merke til i Midtøsten.

Clinton fortsetter å snakke om regimer som må omstille seg, på en måte som nærmest avskriver dem, blant dem kong Abdallah i Jordan. Det er ikke slik man behandler sine venner i full offtentlighet i Midtøsten.

For Mrs. Clinton, the upheavals in Egypt, Tunisia, Jordan and Yemen are evidence of both common grievances across the Arab world and deep differences in the political makeup of each country.

“It’s striking that in Tunisia, Ben Ali, who’d been in power so long, got out of town,” she said, referring to Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali, the ousted president. “He didn’t have the depth of support within the institutions of his government that would have enabled him even to attempt to hang on, so he left.”

Other Arab leaders, she said, believe they can ride out the unrest by taking steps to improve the lives of their people. King Abdullah II of Jordan and President Ali Abdullah Saleh of Yemen appeared to fit that description.

Warning Against Hasty Exit for Mubarak