Explaining why he had been convinced yesterday that Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak was about to relinquish his position, President Barack Obama said that he had been misled by Mr. Mubarak’s out of office autoreply to Mr. Obama’s email.
Embarrassed at the misinterpretation, Mr. Obama conceded today that “maybe I took it a little too literally.”
In a sign that he is losing patience with the Egyptian leader, Mr. Obama said that the U.S. was preparing to send Mr. Mubarak a new email “with the strongest frowny-faced emoticons at our disposal.”
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton also expressed frustration with Mr. Mubarak’s unwillingness to leave, calling him “Egypt’s first zombie President.”
In what some observers have seen as an ominous sign, Mr. Mubarak has reportedly been consulting about his career plans with Jay Leno.