The Truly New Middle East: Will Obama Blow it?

A few days after former President Hosni Mubarak stepped down, the cover page of Newsweek, the American weekly news magazine, carried the following headline: “Egypt: How Obama Blew It”, with nothing other than the photo of the U.S. President, and the name of the author of that week’s lead article: Niall Ferguson.Ferguson, a renowned historian and a Harvard professor, mercilessly attacked Obama and his administration for lacking a grand strategy. “For the second time in his presidency, Obama heard the footsteps of God resounding through events, jumped up to grasp a historic opportunity … and missed it completely,” he argued. In criticizing the administration for its handling of Egypt, Ferguson was hardly alone. Citing the administration’s failure to anticipate the crisis and flip flopping in managing it, the line of Obama’s critics kept getting longer.