So it’s a virus that only attacks al Qaeda? That’s pretty ingenious, and the only way to think of this as anything other than an ill-timed an opportunistic flip-flop. They think we’re not paying attention, that we’ll accept that Oceania has always been at war with Eastasia. (Next week, we’ll explore why he didn’t use the term “refudiation”.)
Republican Senator John McCain of Arizona and independent Senator Joe Lieberman of Connecticut were in Egypt this weekend as the first visiting congressional delegation since Mubarak’s ouster. McCain and Lieberman met with officials in Egypt’s transitional government and even took a walk through Cairo’s Tahrir Square, the focal point of the uprising. At a news conference, McCain had warm words for the Egyptian revolution.
Sen. John McCain: “This revolution is a repudiation of al-Qaeda. This revolution has shown the people of the world, not just in the Arab world, that peaceful change can come about and violence and extremism is not required in order to achieve democracy and freedom. That’s why we are especially proud to be here, where history is being made for the entire world, not just the Arab world.”
McCain’s comments appear to differ from his stance during the height of the Egyptian uprising. Speaking on Fox News just days before Mubarak was forced to resign, McCain described the popular movements in the Arab world as a “virus.”
Sen. John McCain: “This virus is spreading throughout the Middle East. The president of Yemen, as you know, just made the announcement that he wasn’t running again. This, I would argue, is probably the most dangerous period of history in—of our entire involvement in the Middle East, at least in modern times.”