DoD Photo: Chad J. McNeeley
America’s top soldier, Admiral Mike Mullen, meets with Hamad ibn Isa al Khalifa, the king of Bahrain, in December. Following Iran’s lead, Bahraini Shiites rose up in revolt in 1979, which would have further threatened US interests in the region. A strong security clampdown stopped the Shiites from succeeding.
It is true that Egyptians gathered en masse to express their displeasure with the three decades of authoritarian rule they had endured under President Hosni Mubarak. But when debating whether we have witnessed the miracle of spontaneous democracy springing up, it needs to be remembered that Mubarak was a favourite of the US.