Rich Galen

It is not likely that any new government will be composed of Western-facing officials. Over the weekend protesters in Egypt began chanting against the U.S. and Israel. No surprise to anyone.

The U.S. provides about $1.5 billion per year in direct assistance to Egypt. According to Forbes magazine about $1.3 billion is for "peace and security" meaning you and I are paying for those tanks which rolled out in Cairo Friday afternoon.

President Obama's remarks on Friday evening were so weak they made dishwater in your grandma's sink seem like battery acid.

The Administration sent Hillary Clinton out to try and make its position clear, but according to the Washington Post's analysis of the Secretary of State's world tour of Sunday shows yesterday:

The Administration has sought to adapt to the rapidly shifting landscape, at times offering contradictory messages.

Vice President Joe Biden last week said he did not believe Mubarak should step down, while Clinton described the Egyptian government as stable. On Sunday, Clinton declined to reiterate either position.

No one can tell where this will all end, but it is already clear that President Obama, who was so eager to re-set America's relationships with the rest of the world is finding out that (a) it is tougher to be President than to run for President and (b) Bush's policies made more sense than Obama thought they did.

It would be better if, when the history of Africa and the Middle East is written 100 years from now, Mohammed Bouazizi is not the functional equivalent of the Archduke Ferdinand.

Rich Galen

Rich Galen has been a press secretary to Dan Quayle and Newt Gingrich. Rich Galen currently works as a journalist and writes at