'This Week' Transcript: Revolution in Egypt

But Shultz was quite clear. Just as we had in Poland and in Czechoslovakia and in Hungary, we were -- you know, the Reagan administration was adamantly in favor of freedom. And I think that he -- he said we -- and I think you have to start with the fact that it's the courage of the Egyptian people that made this possible. And we should be reinforcing and strengthening that courage.

AMANPOUR: Let me roll some tape of you with President Mubarak when you were House speaker in 1994, and just look at what you said there.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GINGRICH: Can I just say that we're very, very glad to have President Mubarak here. He is a very, very important ally, friend, and adviser. And many things that we've done, including Desert Shield, would not have been possible without the help of Egypt.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

AMANPOUR: So, again, very close ally, and yet you're also full-throated in the defense of democracy.

GINGRICH: You know, it's -- it's the challenge that George W. Bush made in his second inaugural address, which was very complicated. He's saying on the one hand, we are for democracy everywhere, and I think we have to be. That's the American mission in the world. It's why American exceptionalism is ultimately human exceptionalism, because everybody on the planet is endowed by their creator, including, by the way, Chinese, Russian, Iranian, Saudi. I mean, there are a lot -- Venezuelan and Cuban -- I mean, there are a lot of places...

(CROSSTALK)

AMANPOUR: So President Obama standing clearly for the protesters by the end of the...

GINGRICH: Is the right thing to do.

AMANPOUR: ... is the right thing to do?

GINGRICH: But, remember, this is an administration which for reasons I don't understand actually cut out the democracy in Egypt funds inside the State Department.

AMANPOUR: OK, well, as you know...

GINGRICH: So I -- but I don't -- I don't think -- our focus shouldn't be on Obama. Our focus ought to be, what can America do now to make sure the military doesn't impose a new dictatorship for another 30 or 40 years? And how do we, on the other hand, make sure that you don't end up with a Muslim Brotherhood staging a coup at some point over a three- or four- or five-year period?

AMANPOUR: OK, so let me ask you. What does the U.S. do now to make sure that the military, which has put out no timeline, neither for lifting the emergency law or road map for democracy, what does the United States, with such close relationships militarily, do right now?

GINGRICH: I think we have to quietly -- we have a -- we have a lot -- one of the great virtues of our military training program is we have a lot of senior officers who were in school with a lot of Egyptian officers. I think they need to be collectively calling their friends and saying, "Look, you don't want to be -- you don't want to own the country, because then you own every problem and you can't solve them. What you want to do -- you don't want to become Burma. I mean, what you want to do is figure out a way to have a transition to a stable civilian government, recognize that over a fairly long period of time the military is going to have less role in the economy," because right now, military's a big part of the Egyptian economy.

AMANPOUR: And if they don't, do you use the very powerful lever of $1.5 billion a year to the military?

GINGRICH: Sure, of course.

AMANPOUR: Do you pull it?

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