Fox News is reporting that US says Egyptian statement on Jews, Israel a good first step but not enough to ease concerns
The Obama administration said Thursday that a statement issued by the Egyptian presidency is welcome but not enough to ease concerns about anti-Jewish and anti-Israel comments that the Islamist president made before he took office.
The statement by President Mohammed Morsi's office rejects discrimination and incitement to violence based on religion. The State Department called it "an important first step" but said the U.S. continues to look for Morsi and other Egyptian leaders to demonstrate a commitment to religious tolerance and Egypt's peace treaty with Israel.
The U.S. has said Morsi's 2010 remarks —in which he urged hatred of Jews and called Zionists "pigs" and "bloodsuckers" while he was a leader of Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood —are "deeply offensive" and need to be repudiated.
State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland would not say if Washington is demanding that Morsi personally repudiate the remarks, but she made clear the U.S. needs to see more than the statement from his office to be convinced he no longer holds to the earlier views.
One cannot help but wonder if the Obama administration is jumping on this as an opportunity to brush up on its pro-Israel bona fides to help boost the nomination of Chuck Hagel as Secretary of Defense.
True, that is a terribly cynical view to take, but then again, this is the same administration that uses children to push its proposed anti-gun bill.
In any case, since Obama has given the Muslim Brotherhood a pass so far despite its extremist and anti-US history, just how much more can be seriously expected of Morsi without risking the appearance of caving to the US -- something that only Israel is generally expected to do?