What is outgoing U.S. President Barack Obama’s legacy in Egypt?
He started off well, with that 2009 speech at Cairo University about the importance of the region to the United States. We thought that U.S. policies would be different this time around, offering more support to Arab countries. But there was no change. After 2011 and 2013, Obama's political stances were predictable: first he backed Morsi’s regime, then when it was apparent it would fall, he endorsed the new one. Ahmed Kamel, 47, showroom manager
He really had no impact. In fact, I believe U.S. influence in the region was greatly diminished under his leadership. Even Israel didn't benefit as much as it used to from its U.S. alliance under the Obama administration. The United States is no longer "Mama America," as we used to call her.
Amany Galal, 41, housewife
In the United States, President Obama was behind several good laws that benefited the average American—like Obamacare. But on the international front, he did very little, and what he did do—like fight the Islamic State—was half-hearted. This was even more evident in his second term, when it felt like he was just cruising along to get to the end. In 50 years, he will be remembered as the only American president to come to Egypt and speak at Cairo University; he was black, and he had a distant Muslim lineage. Saleh Abdel-Tawab, 65, retired international agency worker
I will remember him as the most two-faced president in U.S. history. Early on, he came to Egypt and spoke with great conviction about how important the Muslim world was to the United States, and how the heart of it was Egypt. Then when we, the people, ousted Mubarak—and later Morsi—he firmly stood against our uprisings, and he only conceded when he saw that there was no hope for those regimes. Ever since president Sisi, the U.S. has been fighting to keep our economy down, because the administration doesn't like that the Egyptian people picked an Army man.
Tamer Saleh, 28, accountant
He follows in the footsteps of his predecessors. The U.S. has always wanted to keep the Egyptian people down—and without a voice—because they know that if we rise up, we will be stronger than the United States and will crush Israel. We had hoped that he would be different, but he wasn't. I really hope Trump wins; at least his policies are clear from the start. Gamal Abdel Salam, 25, security guard
He is the most forgettable U.S. president ever. His focus was mainly on domestic priorities. I don't blame him, because he came at such a difficult time for the U.S. economy. But it was just such a massive disappointment, given how he painted such a rosy picture at the beginning about the U.S. role in supporting the region. Dalia Hamza, 29, graduate student
The policies of the U.S. under Obama were very much about keeping the political status quo in the region. In other words, he wanted to keep the Middle East under dictatorships, because this has long served U.S. interests. The U.S. doesn't want a strong Middle East. In Egypt, the Obama administration always supported the regime in place and was against the will of the people. Now that we have the president we want, the U.S. is trying to keep Egypt’s economy down.
Heba Farahat, 25, restaurant worker