White House getting "specific" on Egypt tone
February 8th, 2011
07:19 PM ET

White House getting "specific" on Egypt tone

WASHINGTON (CNN) –A White House official told CNN that Vice President Biden’s tough new language in a conversation with Egypt’s VP Omar Suleiman is part of an effort to be “as specific as possible.”

The two leaders spoke by phone Tuesday about the transition process that will shape Egypt’s future.

In a readout provided by the White House, Vice President Biden urged an “orderly transition in Egypt that is prompt, meaningful, peaceful, and legitimate,” and that it “produce immediate, irreversible progress.”

Biden and Suleiman also discussed “restraining the Ministry of Interior’s conduct by immediately ending the arrests, harassment, beating, and detention of journalists, and political and civil society activists.”

But the official, who spoke to CNN on the grounds of anonymity due to the sensitive nature of the talks, downplayed the emphasis on “tone” from the administration, instead describing the U.S. position as “one long sustained effort.”  The official reiterated the administration’s position that a wide range of opposition members in Egypt should be included in the national dialogue.

“This should be a potluck not a dinner party,” the official said.  In other words, a process where diverse opinions are brought and heard at the table.

Topics: Egypt • The News • Vice President Biden

soundoff (10 Responses)
  1. tony

    Maybe something else is happening here. Suleiman is in Israel's pocket according to Wikleaks. So it's possible this revolt has US "support" to provide a counter to Israel's intransigence over the Peace process.

    February 8, 2011 at 8:17 pm |

    A dictator and his officials in the regim will not turn overnight a prodemocratic people. They will loose their huge privilages and the wealth they aquired by all kind of unfair ways. Mubarak has to step down. A committee of elite people outside the regime step on and abolish the emergency law, the congress and the constitution which gives the upper hand for a dictator. They have the chance to form a transition governement for one year to prepare the country for fair election and real constitution. Omar soilman is part of the dictatorship regime and has strong implication in torturing political prisoners.

    February 8, 2011 at 8:28 pm |
  3. 100% Eth

    This is the right time, American officials to get a tougher lessons from the past:

    1) No more, never and ever again training Egyptian Militants,
    2) Never and ever again, Supplying and selling Weapons to Egypt,
    3) Never and ever again, financial assistance to Egypt, etc.

    America, do not regret again. Technically Egypt is American enemy.

    February 8, 2011 at 8:32 pm |
    • soxphan

      And there goes the Suez Canal access we have which keeps gas at the $3 a gallon rate instead of over $5 per gallon. Please try again.

      February 9, 2011 at 9:37 am |
  4. Mr. Democrat

    Obama won't even listen to 50% of the American population. No wonder he shows little leadership/support for .03 of the Egyptian population who is protesting.

    February 9, 2011 at 7:51 am |
  5. rob

    It is the Muslim Brotherhood and others that we have to fear in this "Transition. Right now they are playing nice as described in CNN's latest news piece but just like in Iran after the Shah, it took a year before the Radicals siezed power.

    I hope there are smart people in our State Dept and in the Administration who will carefully keep a handle on this. VP Biden is NOT the right person to take the lead.

    February 9, 2011 at 10:41 am |
  6. Gaylon Barrow

    The reason whether Obama or Biden gets rough with Egypt will not succeed. For Obama's desire is that the Brotherhood of Muslims to rule there. This is a no no and can not happen. Also the main reason Obama will not be reelected is because of his followers. All they do is blast away at people and groups with their hate. The ignorance of them is so outright blanten it is sickening enough is enough especially when one does not have a clue as to what they're talking about.

    February 9, 2011 at 12:06 pm |
  7. Pa Santigie

    This should be a lesson for other leaders who believe they have a true friend in the US.
    The US should have seen this coming from afar. Any time a Head of State presides with out a vice/deputy, it tells you that there will be trouble down the road.
    The lack of a deputy/vice is waht has worsened the situation. How Hosni leave when he has no successor.
    Becareful for what you wish for, you just may get it.
    Replacing Hosni is not as easy as it seems, Who do you replace him with.
    This shows a lack of vision and maturity.
    Remember Iran in 1979, Iraq, Gaza,Tunisia, Somalia, Ethiopia, Liberia, I can go on and on....but I think I have made my point. American political expediency always translates to chaos for the people...

    February 9, 2011 at 12:47 pm |
  8. Liz Carter in Georgia

    @Gaylon Barrow; put a dictionary next to your computer and refer to it when you type your nonsense and LIES, ok? OK. Now why do you go on and on with this MUSLIM BROTHERHOOD stuff, aligning it to the PRESIDENT? He keeps telling you he's a CHRISTIAN! The next thing you all keep screaming is, he isn't AMERICAN! HAWAII?? That's so assinine and stupid! He has no interest in the BROTHERHOOD taking over EGYPT; he's just concerned with the safety and the will of the PEOPLE! You all are the ones who BLAST VENOM!

    February 10, 2011 at 8:11 pm |
  9. Liz Carter in Georgia

    @Pa Santigie; I can agree with some of your comment but, did you know that CHENEY opened up his BIG mouth telling us through CNN and other newstions that MUBARAK was our friend? It seemed to have been put out here to shush PRESIDENT OBAMA from making the statement to MUBARAK that possibly stepping down would be in the best interest of his nation. However, had the PRESIDENT not said anything, media would have had a field day with that! We never would have heard the end of that either! SO MUCH DOUBLETALKING!

    February 11, 2011 at 8:37 am |