As a political matter, the Obama White House has been praised for its handling of the turmoil in Egypt. But on policy, the president has been criticized on both the right and the left, his critics ranging from Charles Krauthammer to Chris Matthews.
Former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger is one who has also detected the deficiencies of the Obama administration on this matter. He made an appearance on Friday’s “The Charlie Rose Show” on Bloomberg Television and explained President Barack Obama had completely missed the potential for this crisis, especially based on his State of the Union address last month.
“The administration has a huge problem. They were thrown suddenly into a crisis they obviously didn’t foresee,” Kissinger said. “It wasn’t even mentioned — the Middle East was not even mentioned in the State of the Union address, so it clearly was not a top issue for national consideration.”
During Kissinger’s stint at the State Department, he handled several international crises including the Vietnam War, the Yom Kippur War and revolutions in South America. But he said he had the benefit of not being held to the standard of a 24/7 news cycle and that’s where the Obama administration is fouling up.
“So now they have to improvise reactions, and you couldn’t plan for something that nobody foresaw. So I recognize the administration is under tremendous pressure,” he continued. “And I’ve been in crisis situations. I have not been in crisis situations where we had a 24/7 news cycle and we therefore felt obliged to speak every evening on a fast-moving situation. And this is a particularly complicated one because it has global international implications, it has local implications, and it has domestic implications in this country. So there are many pressures on the administration, but on the whole I would prefer if they would seem a little less frantic about getting into the news cycle.”