Egypt’s rulers declare ‘one month’ state of emergency

Is this the sign that Egypt’s experiment with democracy is well and truly over?

Al Jazeera reports: A state of emergency has been declared across Egypt, as security forces and supporters of deposed president Mohamed Morsi continue to clash around the country.

The announcement on Wednesday came amid a deadly crackdown by security forces on two pro-Morsi protest camps in Cairo.

The health ministry said at least 149 people had been killed in clashes around the country, but some members of Morsi’s Muslim Brotherhood said the death toll was much higher.

Is the United States about to take any punitive measures against Egypt’s military rulers? Not likely. President Obama is “monitoring what’s happening” — translation: he has no intention of taking any action.

The Wall Street Journal reports: The White House once again called for “restraint” in Egypt and said the administration opposes the state-of-emergency law and continues to review U.S. aid to the country.

“The United States strongly condemns the use of violence against protesters in Egypt,” White House spokesman Josh Earnest said on Wednesday. “The violence will only make it more difficult to move Egypt forward.”

Mr. Earnest said the U.S. will hold the interim government accountable for its promise to speed up the transition to a democratic government. Senior U.S. officials are in touch with their counterparts in Egypt, he said.

“The world is watching what’s happening in Cairo,” Mr. Earnest said, adding that U.S. officials are still trying to determine the specifics of events.

President Barack Obama, on vacation on Martha’s Vineyard, was briefed Wednesday morning on developments by National Security Adviser Susan Rice.

“He is closely monitoring what’s happening,” Mr. Earnest said.

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