That being said, I like it when I'm right, and I like it when famous people say the same things that I say. Call it intellectual vanity if you will. I call it "being on the right track".
Read Thomas Friedman's recent op-ed in the New York Times:
Yes, the various Muslim Brotherhoods have exploited the opening created by these uprisings because they were the most organized parties. But if the Islamists don’t respond to the real drivers of this revolution — that yearning for education and jobs and the dignity they bring — they, too, will eventually face a rebellion.And from me:
Egypt's next elections will prove my point. If the Muslim Brotherhood and the Salafists do not satisfy the Egyptians expectations by the time of the next election, they will be voted out of office. It was no surprise when they were recently elected: they were well organized (thanks to their semi-underground status) and presented an alternative vision for Egypt. Logistically and organizationally, nobody else was in a position to be voted into power. That won't, however, be the case in the next round of elections: other parties will have had the chance to organize, form a strategy, and present a case to the Egyptian people. This upcoming presidential election is another story. Stay tuned for developments to come-- as dictated by the ruling military council.Friedman:
So how about we stop being stupid? How about we stop sending planes and tanks to a country where half the women and a quarter of the men can’t read, and start sending scholarships instead?Reed:
Concerning Pakistan, my thoughts are that the US has to stop dangling the military assistance carrot and instead focus on civilian development. Brandishing the stick won't help either. In essence, the US has to fundamentally change the way it has been dealing with Pakistan for the past 30 years (since Zia, at least). No more guns and bombs. Pakistan has got plenty of those (and just tested a nuclear-capable missile last week). What Pakistan lacks, and what the US wants, is the desire to stop militants from attacking the Afghani and Pakistani government and people. That's the issue. Listen, Pakistan isn't going to change overnight, and the US can't simply abandon it either. Therefore, pick a strategy and a goal and go for it. Giving guns isn't the right strategy, and it isn't going to attain the desired goal either.If anything, I need to be less verbose. Otherwise, in a funny kind of way, I feel validated.