Brzezinski worked in the Carter administration (Khomeni!) and repeats the idea that the makers of the “Innocence of Muslims” video should be investigated in order to confirm or deny an intent to provoke violence. This seems to be the liberal party line in the wake of the Obama administration’s actions.
In my opinion, the investment in the liberal internationalist doctrine led by Obama’s team is not worth the chilling effect on free speech here at home. There seems to be little value in having the brother of Al Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri, Muhammad Al-Zawahiri, out in the streets of Cairo rallying anti-American support, then doing an interview explaining why there should be swift, Sharia punishment for a video he hasn’t seen.
It sounds like appeasement at this point, or just a nod to our weakening influence and events largely beyond our control. As Brzezinski notes:
“We’re dealing here with a messy region which is increasingly slipping into increased instability — a region in which American domination is rapidly, rapidly coming to an end.”
All of those Salafists, the radicals, the purists, will try and bend events to their will, and Morsi’s Muslim Brotherhood coalition will have to co-opt them in order to consolidate power further.
Also mentioned: Pakistan-a 21st century military with nuclear weapons, a semi-democratic elite, educated few atop masses of many uneducated people, and all this atop a 16th century tribal/feudal society. What happens when we withdraw from Afpak?
Addition: Paul Rahe is much more critical of Brzezinski here.
Related On This Site: Al-Zawahiri’s Egypt, a good backstory: Lawrence Wright At The New Yorker: ‘The Man Behind Bin Laden’
From Al Jazeera English: ‘Morsi Wins Egypt’s Presidential Election’…Adam Garfinkle At The American Interest on Egypt: ‘Still More of the Same—and Something New’…are we still on a liberalizing, Westernizing trajectory?, however slow the pace? Adam Garfinkle At The American Interest: ‘What Did The Arab Spring Really Change?’
Pakistan’s a mess, but in a way, more stable than Egypt: Via Youtube Via Michael Totten At World Affairs: ‘VICE Guide To Karachi’…Christopher Hitchens At Vanity Fair: ‘From Abbotabad To Worse’…Repost-’Dexter Filkins In The NY Times: The Long Road To Chaos In Pakistan’