The New York Times foreign affairs columnist is rightly ridiculed for pontificating as if he sees himself the spokesperson for America itself. What’s good for the US often seems to be his priority.
He recently spoke in Cairo (in between interviewing Muslims he didn’t think the West should bomb, yet), and found some people less than impressed with getting lessons in civility from a man who rather loves backing US-led wars in the Arab world (via Ahram Online):
Prominent American author Thomas Friedman spoke at the American University of Cairo (AUC) on Monday, where he expressed his views on Islamist political ascendancy in the wake of Egypt’s first post-Mubarak parliamentary polls.
“This country is very heavy for any political parties to lift it on its own,” Friedman said during a panel discussion, hosted by former Egyptian ambassador to the US Nabil Fahmy. “We need collective action.”
During a question-and-answer session, Friedman faced the ire of Youssef El-Korma, a member of AUC’s student leftist movement. “You can’t come here with a smile and preach to us on democracy when you’ve been demeaning Arabs and supporting war crimes in Gaza and Iraq,” said El-Korma. “We don’t welcome you here.”
El-Korma’s assertions were met with applause by the audience but failed to draw a response from Friedman, who replied to another student critic earlier by saying that, “In the Middle East everybody wants to own you, and if they can’t, they will try to destroy you.”