What has not emerged, however, is a viable secular opposing group that can stop the Brotherhood from dominating a new government. “Obama downplays Muslim Brotherhood,” from the McClatchy-Tribune News Service, February 6:
WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama described the Muslim Brotherhood as a well-organized group with anti-American rhetoric in an interview on Sunday, but downplayed the group’s size and influence in Egypt and its potential to join a new governing coalition.
Obama stressed that nonreligious groups would be important as negotiations in Egypt begin about moving beyond the military regime of President Hosni Mubarak. Educators and civil society groups could be vital participants in democratic governance, he said.
“I think the Muslim Brotherhood is one faction in Egypt,” Obama said. They are “well-organized,” he said, and “there are strains of the ideology that are anti-U.S.”
“It’s important for us not to say our only two options are the Muslim Brotherhood or a suppressed Egyptian people,” Obama said….
“There is no single way forward,” P.J. Crowley, the State Department spokesman, said Sunday. “There are a number of changes that need to take place, but ultimately the future has to be determined by Egyptians.” American officials applauded the fact that talks are taking place, with the Muslim Brotherhood taking part….