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Sunday, January 30, 2011

When there is no Camp David Treaty

The good news from Egypt is that there may be a new government. The bad news - says Caroline Glick - is that government is likely to abrogate the Camp David treaty with Israel.
And as we now see, all of its possible secular and Islamist successors either reject outright Egypt's peace treaty with Israel or will owe their political power to the support of those who reject the peace with the Jewish state. So whether the Egyptian regime falls next week or next year or five years from now, the peace treaty is doomed.


It is the "Arab Street's" overwhelming animosity towards Israel that causes the pragmatists to argue that Israel's best play is to cut deals with Arab dictators who rule with an iron fist. Since Israel and the Arab despots share a fear of the Arab masses, the pragmatists claim that Israel should give up all the land it took control over as a payoff to the regimes, who in exchange will sign peace treaties with it.

This was the logic that brought Israel to surrender the strategically priceless Sinai Peninsula to Egypt in exchange for the Camp David accord that will not survive Mubarak.

And of course, giving up the Sinai wasn't the only sacrifice Israel made for that nearly defunct document. Israel also gave up its regional monopoly on US military platforms. Israel agreed that in exchange for signing the deal, the US would begin providing massive military aid to Egypt. Indeed, it agreed to link US aid to Israel with US aid to Egypt.

Owing to that US aid, the Egyptian military today makes the military Israel barely defeated in 1973 look like a gang of cavemen. Egypt has nearly 300 F-16s. Its main battle tank is the M1A1 which it produces in Egypt. Its navy is largest in the region. Its army is twice the size of the IDF. Its air defense force constitutes a massive threat to the IAF. And of course, the ballistic missiles and chemical weapons it has purchased from the likes of North Korea and China give it a significant stand-off mass destruction capability.

Despite its strength, due to the depth of popular Arab hatred of Israel and Jews, the Egyptian regime was weakened by its peace treaty. Partially in a bid to placate its opponents and partially in a bid to check Israeli power, Egypt has been the undisputed leader of the political war against Israel raging at international arenas throughout the world. So too, Mubarak has permitted and even encouraged massive anti-Semitism throughout Egyptian society.

With this balance sheet at the end of the "era of peace," between Israel and Egypt, it is far from clear that Israel was right to sign the deal in the first place. In light of the relative longevity of the regime it probably made sense to have made some deal with Egypt. But it is clear that the price Israel paid was outrageously inflated and unwise.
Indeed, it was.

Read the whole thing.

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At 3:02 AM, Blogger NormanF said...

Yup... The big mistake of the Israel-Egypt peace treaty is that it was signed with a regime - not made with the people. That's why it won't survive Mubarak. Ditto for the peace treaty with Jordan. If there is a lesson Israelis should learn if that if there is no peace between peoples, no peace agreement will last.

After a generation, this is a lesson that should be incumbent on every one in Israel. To make suicidal concessions to Arab regimes that can literally be replaced overnight is beyond crazy.

That is exactly why Israel cannot agree to a Palestinian state in today's dangerous environment.

At 5:23 AM, Blogger mrzee said...

There were also concerns about what would happen to the peace treaty with Egypt when Sadat was murdered and Mubarak took over. Israel should have been preparing for this a long time ago.

At 6:25 AM, Blogger Moriah said...

When the Islamists officially take over, they will ceremoniously burn the peace treaty. It will be a public spectacle


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