The United States has decided — it is up to Egyptians to decide.
Anyone looking for a clear sign that the United States does or doesn’t back its ally of 30 years, President Hosni Mubarak, won’t find it in the official words out of Washington today.
Instead, Washington took the firm stance to perch on the tightrope — call for Democratic reforms, stay away from public opinions about Mubarak.
“We’re not picking between those on the street and those in the government,” White House spokesman Robert Gibbs said.
What about the perception among Egyptian protesters that the U.S. government still appears to be backing Mubarak? “I do not think that those protesters would be assuaged by the notion that somebody in a series of buildings several thousand miles away have determined the extent to what that means for them. That is for the people of Egypt to decide and determine.”
What does the United States mean by an “orderly transition” then?
“I do believe orderly transition means change, and what we’ve advocated from the very beginning is that the way Egypt looks and operates must change,” Gibbs said.