ON-Lion Letter
"[T]oday's pressing question for Egypt is what steps the new military rulers should take," according to Bradley Prize recipient and former United States Ambassador to the United Nations John Bolton in the cover article of the March issue of Great Britain's Standpoint magazine.  Bolton is now a senior fellow of the American Enterprise Institute for Policy Research in Washington, D.C., which The Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation in Milwaukee substantially supports.

"First, there should not be a rush to elections," Bolton writes in "How to Make Egypt Safe for Democracy."  "It was a fatal mistake for Palestinians when the Bush Administration, reading supposedly irrefutable polls that Hamas could not win, scheduled elections in 2006 that allowed Hamas to do just that.

"Second, participation in the elections, whenever scheduled, should be limited to real political parties," he continues.  "In order to join legitimate political parties in contesting elections, we asked in Lebanon and in Palestinian elections that terrorists had to renounce violence (and mean it), give up their weapons, and abjure the prospect of resorting to force if they didn't like the outcome.  Sadly, we did not insist on these standards, and the results in Lebanon and Gaza prove our mistake.  We should not repeat these errors, although Obama seems well on the way to doing so.

"Third, the West should provide material assistance to those truly committed to a free and open society. ...  At a minimum, we should let Egyptians themselves decide whether they will be 'tainted' with outside assistance; if they can live with the taint, so should we.

"Fourth, Egypt's military must restore and extend stability, setting an example throughout the Middle East, thereby allowing whatever progress toward a truly democratic culture to emerge," Bolton concludes.  "Egypt's military will require political space in the months ahead."
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