Fox News
August 15, 2013

Obama's role in Egypt unrest up for debate

Guests: Patrick Buchanan, Juan Williams

This is a rush transcript from "Hannity," August 15, 2013. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

SEAN HANNITY, HOST: Tonight the man who promised to heal the planet finds his popularity in an absolute free fall. Embarrassing new poll numbers were released earlier today by Gallup. President Obama's rating on the economy has plummeted a staggering seven points. It's now at an all-time low of 35 percent. His failures on the world stage are also catching up to him as his foreign affairs approval ratings dropped three points. Right now, stands at a dismal 40 percent.

Now, it's not surprising, considering his decision to vacation at Martha's Vineyard while Egypt is now spiraling out of control. The president did however emerge from the shadows of Martha's Vineyard today to deliver a brief statement on the crisis in Cairo. He spent all of six minutes, about 600 people are now dead, thousands injured. He announced that the U.S. was canceling a joint military exercise with the country. Now, there's a shocker. Believe it or not, he even took a moment to compare Egypt -- yes, Egypt -- to the United States of America. Oh, really? Watch this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: We recognize that change takes time. And that a process like this is never guaranteed. There are examples in recent history of countries that are transitioned out of a military government towards a democratic government and did not always go in a straight line and the process was not always smooth. There are going to be false starts. There will be difficult days. America's democratic journey took us through mighty struggles to perfect our union.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HANNITY: Now, a few short moments after making those call quite ignorant remarks, guess where our commander in chief was spotted? After his six minutes of addressing the press, he was out playing golf on the golf course. Which leaves few with one simple question -- is he really that out of touch or does he simply not care?

Here to help answer that question much more, author, columnist Patrick J. Buchanan, Fox News political analyst Juan Williams.

Patrick J. Buchanan, I contend he precipitated this. He pushed Mubarak out. He supported Morsi and now he was lecturing the military which is getting rid of the radical Islamist. Is this the foreign policy that America needs?

PATRICK J. BUCHANAN, SYNDICATED COLUMNIST AND AUTHOR: Well, I think the things are out of control in Cairo as far as the president is concerned. Frankly, as far as the United States is concerned.

But look, I guess we did advise the military not to do what they did, which was conduct sort of a Tiananmen Square massacre there of all those folks in the middle of Cairo.

But Sean, one of two things will come out of this whole mess. And that is either the Muslim Brotherhood or the Egyptian military is going to rule Egypt. And I guess we've got to make a choice.

HANNITY: Well, I think the choice -- is really, is it really choice, Pat? Does it have to be the military? Because they're far more pro-America?

BUCHANAN: I think it's basically, we've got to put our money on the military, Sean. That's why I think we should probably maintain the military communications and the foreign aid to the military. Look what the military is doing. They're keeping Hamas bottled up, they're fighting Al Qaeda in the Sinai. They're working with the Israelis on that. They're the only force over there protecting the Christians. They did a terrible thing, I think, yesterday. But I think our money has to be ultimately on the military.

HANNITY: Pushing Mubarak out, was that not a mistake? Juan Williams?

JUAN WILLIAMS, FOX NEWS POLITICAL ANALYST: You know, now that you look back on it and you think about what happened in the Arab Spring, you have to say, well, yes, we were pro-democracy. We want democracy. We want to project those American values in the Middle East. But yes, if you look at it in the short term, Sean, you think, you know, Mubarak held that country together, he held the Islamists at bay. And now, the Islamists, even though the majority of that country, the majority of Egyptians oppose Morsi, oppose the Islamists, the Islamists have essentially caused that country to go into something like a civil war.

HANNITY: Juan Williams, this president supported Mohamed Morsi, they gave him money, billions of tax dollars, they gave him F-16s, they gave him tanks. This is a guy that referred to the Israelis as descendants of apes and pigs and was a 9/11 truther. This was a mistake from day one, Juan. Tell me why not.

WILLIAMS: Because we were trying to promote democracy. That's America promoting our values, Sean. And you should listen to what Pat just said. I think Pat is exactly right. Look at what the military is doing. We have to pick sides right now and we cannot side with the Muslim Brotherhood.

HANNITY: Oh, he just lectured the military today.

BUCHANAN: Sean, Sean, Sean, let me agree here with Juan to this extent. We didn't give those F-16s and the Bradley (ph) fighting vehicles to Morsi. He doesn't fly an F-16. That was to maintain our alliance with and our connections with the military. Now, why do we support to a degree Morsi? The guy won a free election. He got 50 percent of the vote for the --

WILLIAMS: There we go.

BUCHANAN: Twenty five percent from the --

HANNITY: Patrick J. Buchanan, why would you ever give an Islamic radical who thinks Israel is the descendants of apes and pigs, an F-16? Have you lost your mind?

WILLIAMS: We gave it to the military!

BUCHANAN: We gave it to the military that overthrew Morsi!

HANNITY: He was kicking out the military leaders and putting in his own puppets in there.

WILLIAMS: No, no --

BUCHANAN: That's why we kept our lines to the military, for heaven's sakes.

WILLIAMS: Yes. And that's why the military tossed them out.

BUCHANAN: Exactly.

HANNITY: Luckily, because he wasn't successful in getting rid of all the military, Juan. That's the reason.

WILLIAMS: Well, no.

Look, the reality is the military is our force, our most stable force in that country. It is a pro-democratic force and even with what happened yesterday, I hope people don't forget the Islamists were ruing that country. The reason most Egyptians oppose the Muslim Brotherhood is the economy was tanking. The society was in crisis and they want democracy.

(CROSSTALK)

HANNITY: You're missing the main point.

BUCHANAN: Let me, let me --

HANNITY: Go ahead, Pat.

BUCHANAN: Let me disagree with Juan to this extent. I don't think the military is inherently democratic. They have a deep state over there, which is military dominated. They put in a puppet government basically when they overthrew Morsi. When John Kerry goes out and says, look, the military was restoring democracy, that provides comic relief to this tragedy.

The truth is, again, one of two of these forces is going to rule Egypt, 84 million people, most important Arab country, and I think we've got to put our money basically on the military.

HANNITY: I love both of you. But you're missing a very important point here.

BUCHANAN: What's that?

HANNITY: Obama supported a radical Islamist. Not only did he support -- he paved the way for his ascend.

(CROSSTALK)

WILLIAMS: Oh, no!

BUCHANAN: He was elected! The Egyptian people elected him!

WILLIAMS: What was the choice, Sean? Be real. What was the option?

BUCHANAN: The Egyptian people elected him!

HANNITY: The option was not to push Mubarak out, as imperfect as he was, why did he push him out?

WILLIAMS: Well, because of the Arab Spring, the Arab people were looking for someone who they would feel represented all of their interests, democratically. And that's why they chose democratically.

HANNITY: Go ahead, Pat.

BUCHANAN: Sean, let me ask you this.

HANNITY: Go ahead.

BUCHANAN: Look, I'm not for Morsi, the Muslim Brotherhood.

WILLIAMS: No.

BUCHANAN: But 50 percent of the Egyptian people voted for him. He went into power. And Obama says, look, I may not like the election, but we got to work with these guys. That's the elected government. He tried, they failed.

HANNITY: Pat, I'm sitting here in this studio, and I told everybody that watches this show that when he was pushing out Mubarak, I said there's one organized opposition party, which was the Brotherhood. He didn't think it would happen. I knew it would happen.

BUCHANAN: I agree with you.

HANNITY: Now we're giving the radical Islamist tanks. I don't care what you say. He's still running the country. Military and money. That is insanity.

BUCHANAN: Who gets the tanks?

WILLIAMS: That's the United States.

HANNITY: The United States giving radical Islamists money. That's nuts.

WILLIAMS: We are not -- in fact, we're on the other side! We're trying even now to be decent about the military's position!

HANNITY: We gave Morsi's government $1.5 billion --

BUCHANAN: That is the military!

WILLIAMS: No, no. Not Morsi! You've got to distinguish --

(CROSSTALK)

And you have to realize the real world, real politic option, Sean. You can't just smear everybody with one brush.

HANNITY: OK. We'll do business with the radical Islamists. That is insane.

WILLIAMS: Oh, gosh!

HANNITY: That is the definition of insanity. Sorry.

WILLIAMS: Oh, man.

HANNITY: All right. I see radical Islam as the enemy of America. Morsi is in that camp. The Brotherhood is in that camp. Pat, last word.

BUCHANAN: I see Al Qaeda as our enemy.

WILLIAMS: Thank you.

BUCHANAN: I didn't like the Muslim Brotherhood. But we've sent the weapons to the military, which did the job on Morsi.

HANNITY: They did in the end.

WILLIAMS: There it is!

HANNITY: But Morsi, you got to admit, was trying to take out those military leaders one by one.

WILLIAMS: Yes. But he didn't. Obviously the military took him out, Sean! Catch up with the news!

HANNITY: You're missing the whole point. Obama caused this, created this situation.

WILLIAMS: Oh, stop!

(CROSSTALK)

WILLIAMS: Obama -- every time. But this is a situation where President Bush or Obama, anybody --

HANNITY: Stop sucking up to this guy, it's a disastrous part of policy.

WILLIAMS: Oh, stop!

HANNITY: Stop kissing his backside. It's awful.

WILLIAMS: All right. Look, I'm just telling you, you brought Obama's numbers. Obama's numbers, the GOP would kill to get Obama's approval numbers.

HANNITY: I got to go.

BUCHANAN: No, Obama is responsible for a lot, but he's not responsible

for the Arab Spring.

WILLIAMS: No.

HANNITY: Coming up -- thank you both. I still like you, Juan, anyway.

WILLIAMS: Thank you, Sean.

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