President Obama gave his first extended television interview since the protests in Libya and Egypt to Telemundo on Wednesday night, and he took the opportunity to explain the U.S.'s role in the developing world while clarifying where the country stands with Egypt right now.
"I don't think that we would consider them an ally, but we don't consider them an enemy," Obama told Telemundo host José Diaz-Balart. "They are a new government trying to find their way." The President explained that, for the most part, the new Egyptian government has been doing the right thing. They don't always agree, but that's why he described their relationship as a "work in progress." But, for now, he's demanding the Embassy in Egypt is secure, "I that's going to be a real big problem," he said.
Earlier in the interview, Obama rejected the idea of restricting foreign aid in countries "that don't want us around," as Diaz-Balart put it. "The United States doesn't have an option of removing itself from the world," Obama explained. "The vast majority of Libyans welcomed the United States' involvement [in the uprising]. They understand that it's because of us that they got rid of a dictator who had crushed their spirits for 40 years." There were pro-American protests that broke out on Wednesday in Libya.
Watch the interview here:
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.