Egypt – be careful what it wish for

Obama (and the British government, to an extent) seem to have the knives out for President Mubarak at the moment. It’s called populism, and theyre trying to make themselves popular with certain sections of the middle east. Mubarak seems to have been a pretty good ruler given the standards in the region, but he’s got the skids under him already so they’re toadying up to his opponants.

Of course, when meddling in the internal affairs of another country they need an excuse. In Iraq it wasn’t regime change, it was weapons of mass destruction. In Egypt the best they can come up with is democracy. The Egyptions deserve democracy and Mubarak isn’t letting them have it. He’s given them peace and stability, but apparnetly democracy is more important.

I’m not so convinced. Failing third world countries are seldom helped by it. Where they have it, it’s left over from colonial days and tends to be used to get a new dictator in place, often with disasterous results. Look at the exmaples – Rodeshia, India, Pakistan, Ivory Coast – pick a third world country and try to find ways democracy has helped. I’ve been trying hard and I can’t think of any exanples. How about Russia? They threw off the corruption that developed under communism and replaced it with…? Okay, there’s East Germany – they’re probably better off in all respects.

Mubarak and his clan are hardly squeeky clean, but its a matter for the people of Egypt and the west is never thanked for interfering , but we never learn. Our leaders might find themselves stuck with embaressing “friends”, and the people of Egypt may end up blaming them.

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