MUBARAK FEARS ‘CHAOS’ IF HE WERE TO RESIGN…. ABC’s Christiane Amanpour met with Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak today, interviewing the autocratic leader for about 30 minutes in Cairo’s presidential palace. Not surprisingly, Mubarak said his government isn’t responsible for this week’s violence, adding, “I do not want to see Egyptians fighting each other.”

Of particular interest, though, was Mubarak’s explanation for resisting calls for his immediate ouster.

He said he’s fed up with being president and would like to leave office now, but cannot, he says, for fear that the country would sink into chaos. […]

I asked how he felt after giving the speech Monday night, saying he would not run for president again, he told me he felt relief. […]

While he described President Obama as a very good man, he wavered when I asked him if he felt the U.S. had betrayed him. When I asked him how he responded to the United States’ veiled calls for him to step aside sooner rather than later, he said he told President Obama “you don’t understand the Egyptian culture and what would happen if I step down now.”

First, Egypt is already sinking into chaos, so Mubarak may need to work on this answer.

Second, it certainly sounds as if President Obama asked him to step down now.

Steve Benen

Follow Steve on Twitter @stevebenen. Steve Benen is a producer at MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show. He was the principal contributor to the Washington Monthly's Political Animal blog from August 2008 until January 2012.