The White House reaction to the historic outpouring of Egyptians calling for the ouster of President Mohamed Morsi can be summed up as thus: Don’t turn attention away from President Obama’s heavily touted African tour.
As Obama flew to his last stop on the three-nation swing, Tanzania, Tamarod (Arabic for “rebel”) once again stole his thunder: The protesters won as the powerful Egyptian military announced a 48-hour ultimatum for an agreement to be reached on their demands. Otherwise, they’ll provide a “road map” for a post-Morsi country.
Still, the White House inundated reporters with fact sheets on Obama’s trade initiatives, health and power investments and efforts to combat wildlife trafficking in Africa, along with his new Young African Leaders Initiative.
But the Obama administration is facing uncomfortable truths that dwarf the opposition protesters’ inconvenient timing.