Rand Paul and Egypt

Senator Rand Paul sent two tweets attacking “neocons” for supporting for military coup in Egypt and urging that foreign aid be cut off.

  1. In Egypt, democratic authoritarianism is replaced with military junta. American neocons say send them more of your money.

  2. In Egypt, governments come and go. The only thing certain is that American taxpayers will continue to be stuck with the $1.5 billion bill.

Personally, I would prefer that the military rule over Egypt rather than the Muslim Brotherhood. The military is less likely to start a war with Israel or massacre the Copts. Ideally, of course, would be democracy, but there is more to democracy than just regular elections. If there is no respect for the rights and property of the minority, or if the majority is perfectly happy voting themselves into slavery, than democracy doesn’t work all that well.
What seems to be forgotten by neocons and others is that democracy is not the ultimate end of government. The whole reason to have government is the protect the rights and liberties of the people ruled. A democratic government that is responsive to public opinion is more likely to protect people’s rights, but even a democratic government can be tyrannical towards the minority. We don’t just want democracy in places like Egypt. We want a government that will not oppress any of the people.
Getting back to Egypt, I think our best policy would be not to interfere in their politics. Just as in Syria, there are no clear good guys, and certainly no Washingtons or Jeffersons. It would probably also be a good idea to reduce the aid we give them, and cut out any military aid completely. There is no point in arming a potential adversary.


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