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Monday, August 22, 2011

'Anything that kills Israelis is good'

Barry Rubin reports on Arab - especially Egyptian - reactions to Thursday's terror attacks and their aftermath.
At one point, either confused or after the terrorists hid among a group of Egyptian soldiers dressed the same way, Israeli soldiers fired and reportedly killed three real Egyptian soldiers. Israel has apologized in line with international norms.

Amr Moussa, the man most likely to be Egypt’s next president and known for his hatred of Israel and strong dislike of the United States (a radical nationalist who opposes Islamism but might make a deal with the Brotherhood to get into power and to govern thereafter) gives a foretaste of his demagagic tendencies if elected. He tweeted:

“Israel has to realize that the days in which our sons are killed without an appropriate and strong reaction are forever gone.”

That sounds rather like a threat of war. Oh, he’ll be just fine running Egypt, right? For the record, let’s note that Egypt failed to guard its border, the shortcoming that made the whole shoot-out happen in the first place. Presumably Egypt won’t be apologizing to Israel. In fact, it has withdrawn its ambassador.

(A personal note. A couple of year ago, an Egyptian diplomat invited me to lunch in Tel Aviv. One of the things he said was that he had advised Israeli Arab citizens to reverse their policy of refusing to join Israel’ army. Then, he explained, they could get military training and have guns to use against Israel some day. They rejected the idea, he concluded. I’m not joking. That’s the way people really talk in the Middle East when they think it isn’t going to be reported. I should add that I never agreed on any confidentiality in that conversation.)

Nor will anyone in Egypt–not a single group, writer, or intellectual–publicly condemn the attack on Israel even though it was carried out by an al-Qaida affiliate that also wants an Islamist revolution in Egypt. Of course, the Egyptian military is attacking local al-Qaida revolutionaries within the country. But we are back to the pre-Sadat standard: Anything that kills Israelis is good.
Read it all. It sounds like the Egyptians are going to try to have it both ways: Keep the Camp David treaty in effect, but circumvent those provisions that limit Egypt's freedom of action.

What could go wrong?

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At 8:29 AM, Blogger mrzee said...

Why wouldn't Egypt try to circumvent the Camp David treaty? They can see from the Oslo Accords ignoring a treaty with Israel doesn't matter to anyone.


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