Billionaire George Soros says he is optimistic that the enthusiam that has carried demonstrations in Egypt will lead to a mostly peaceful democratic outcome and that President Obama should move quickly to support the will of Egypt's people.
In an essay today in The Washington Post,
Soros, a liberal who has funded democratic movements in East Europe and the former Soviet Republics, admits he is no fan of revolutions, but suggests the United States should encourage "corrupt and repressive rulers who are no longer tolerated by their people to step aside and allow new leaders to be elected in free and fair elections."
Soros, chairman of the Soros Fund Management and the Open Society Foundations, said the administration should begin thinking about the Middle East in a new way — instead of assuming the region is not capable of developing its own path to democracy.
"President Obama personally and the United States as a country have much to gain by moving out in front and siding with the public demand for dignity and democracy," Soros wrote. "This would help rebuild America's leadership and remove a lingering structural weakness in our alliances that comes from being associated with unpopular and repressive regimes."
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