(Politico).Former Vice President Dick Cheney praised embattled Egyptian strongman Hosni Mubarak Saturday night, but his support was measured and conditional.
Cheney told a group of conservative activists gathered to celebrate Ronald Reagan’s 100th birthday:
“There comes a time for everybody to hang it up and move on, You get to the point where years add up, the burdens become tougher to deal with. … That’s a decision that only the Egyptians can make.”
“He’s been a good man and a good friend and ally of the United States, and we need to remember that, You’re looking for balance here, but I do hope that there is a channel of communication.”
Without criticizing President Barack Obama explicitly, he stressed that the United States must maintain an open and private channel of communications with Mubarak.
“It is very hard for some foreign leader to act on U.S. advice in a visible way, You tell me as president of the United States that I’ve got to do X, and publicly then if I do X, my people think I’m not my own man. … There’s a reason why a lot of diplomacy is conducted in secret.”
“We think it’s the best system devised by man, and our hearts are gladdened when somebody else operates in similar fashion, but there are also other issues that are important at the same time".