Strong words from President Obama were accompanied by an empty gesture - the announcement that Americans are withdrawing from a joint military exercise.
The Obama administration is wary of doing anything damaging to a country which, in addition to everything else, is on the edge of an economic abyss.
Were Egypt to be subjected to punitive sanctions over this, or a reduction in aid, it would be even closer to becoming a failed state than it already is.
Obviously a military coup and the overthrow of a democratically-elected government go against our core values.
But the calculation in Washington and London is that however distasteful, it might yet prove to be the least worst option for a country that as been in a perpetual state of decline for two-and-a-half years.
Rasha Abdel Wahab gives her take on what life is like in Egypt as supporters of the ousted president clash with security forces.
The military crackdown of Muslim Brotherhood supporters in Cairo has thrown Egypt into deadly disarray with no sign of a political solution.
The Interior Minister's claim that minimum force was used in the Cairo crackdown is ridiculous. The tactic was more akin to scorched earth.