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POLITICS: PennAve

John McCain: US must cut aid to regain credibility in Egypt

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CNN,Egypt,Foreign Aid,Egyptian Revolution,PennAve,John McCain,Tim Mak,Middle East

Sen. John McCain on Sunday urged the Obama administration to take more forceful measures against the Egyptian military, which he said not only conducted a coup but "orchestrated a massacre."

McCain, who recently traveled to Egypt, said on CNN's "State of the Union" that the United States had "no credibility" there because it had continues to provide $1.3 billion in annual aid to the country after first threatening to cut it off in response to the military's ouster of the government.

"We are not in compliance with the law about a coup, which is clearly what it is," McCain, R-Ariz., said.

Officially labeling the military's ouster of the Egyptian government as a coup would under law require the U.S. to cut off about $1.3 billion in annual aid. The Obama administration has refused to characterize the ouster as a coup, allowing aid to continue in hopes of maintaining leverage with Egypt and to protect Israel's interests.

"For us to sit by and watch this happen is a violation of everything that we stood for," McCain added. "When we threaten something ... and then not do it, then you lose your credibility and your influence."

McCain said that while there was a risk to Israel if aid was cut off, the Egyptian generals currently running the country's government are "stoking anti-Americanism to a large degree and anti-Israel rhetoric is very high."

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