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Arabs vs Hamas
Egypt Still Trying to Crush Hamas

The war in Gaza is showing some signs of winding down. When it does end, the next question will be who will win the peace? At least one Arab nation is putting its thumb on the scale—in favor of Israel. VOA reports that when Egypt recently conveyed terms from the various Palestinian factions to Israel, it added several Egyptian reservations that would significantly hamper the Gazan terrorist group going forward:

Cairo might contemplate easing the limited freedom of movement across its own border with Gaza, but was unlikely to accept Palestinian calls to allow a normal flow of trade, Egyptian diplomatic sources said.

Egypt insists that any discussion over the Rafah border crossing take place bilaterally with the Palestinian Authority rather than as part of any overall deal between the Palestinians and Israel to ease the blockade, the sources said.

The border closure, which is gradually strangling Hamas, was a major factor leading to the beginning of the current conflict. By conveying this proposal with these reservations, Egypt is signaling its determination to maintain a stranglehold on Hamas—which would suit Israel just fine. Egypt’s military government, for its part, sees Hamas as kissing cousins to the Muslim Brotherhood, the military’s inveterate enemy.

As WRM pointed out recently, this round of Israel-Palestinian fighting was particularly protracted because core interests are at stake. This was the case not merely for Israel and Hamas, but in regard to the Arab actors in the region who would normally try to wind down a war when Israel was winning, if not openly aid the Palestinians. Instead, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and a number of other countries have been quietly urging Israel to give Hamas the pummeling they believe it needs.

Long-term, this may be promising for Israel, implying a sort of backhanded acceptance that may in time become more. Short-term, it helps to build an anti-Hamas, anti-Hezbollah, and ultimately anti-Iran consensus in the Middle East.

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  • Eric J.

    I say turn Gaza back over to Egypt to administer. In return, give them a cut of the Leviathan gas field. Egyptian soldiers can kill as many Hamas terrorists and civilians as they want, and never make the A block of the evening news.

    • Ernst Bloefeld

      Egypt killed at least 1200 civilians over the past few months destroying Hamas tunnels and military infrastructure. Hadn’t seen much about this in the news have you though. I wonder why?

  • TRE

    Hamas is a recognized terrorist organization and it should be dealt with as such. Their Sharia aim is anathema to decent rulership of Egypt.

    Only Barack Hussein Obama and CNN pretend it’s acceptable to view Hamas as a pure lawful political organization.

  • ljgude

    Although only an alliance of convenience, Egypt is certainly making this particular situation very different than past engagements. While Hamas should never have been eligible to be elected because it is an openly terrorist organization, it looks like they may be forced to accept terms imposed as much by Egypt as Israel. Al Sisi has certainly cut this Muslim Brotherhood client off from supplies and denied them a safe haven – for which I am grateful every day. Putting al Sisi in power will go down as Obama’s greatest foreign policy coup ….oh yeah, right. 😉

  • Breif2

    Gee, if this is so, why isn’t Hamas attacking Egypt?


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