President Obama might well recall what he wrote in Foreign Affairs in the summer of 2007: "In the Islamic world and beyond, combating the terrorists' prophets of fear will require more than lectures on democracy." The United States must pay attention to its interests—which coincide with its values. A Brotherhood government would assault individual liberty and would be a disaster for the United States. It would be able to deploy one of the strongest militaries in the region, built on some of the most advanced American-made platforms. It would support terrorism efforts worldwide and combat antiterrorism efforts. It would strengthen Hamas and undermine the PLO. It would put Jordan's King Abdullah under even more pressure. It would threaten Israel in the short run, and in the long run might expose Israel to another "1948 moment" in the form of a multifront war, with overwhelming odds.
America needs to be on the right side of human rights. It also needs to be on the right side of history. Our interests and our values are at stake in the outcome of the revolution taking place in Egypt, where our policies should reflect the advice: "Do not take the slightest risk of a catastrophic outcome."