(From a friend.) Today the Times piece on the Obama administration planning to give military aid to Egypt -- despite its poor rights record -- has this second paragraph:
To restart the aid, which has been a cornerstone of American relations with Egypt for more than three decades, the administration plans on sidestepping a new Congressional requirement that for the first time directly links military assistance to the protection of basic freedoms.
Hmmm. What happened three decades ago with Egypt that cause America to lavish it with funds? Well it recognized Israel and made a peace treaty with its neighbor. But the Times article never says so...
This is the fiscal and strategic cost of the U.S. special relationship with Israel, and one that runs against the convergence of values and interests in having a rights-respecting ally in Egypt. Egypt is not protecting human rights, but we are overriding our own laws so as to ignore its rights abuses. As we did with Mubarak for decades.
This is the strategic cost to the U.S. that is not repaid in kind by the Israelis. They refuse to make peace with their other neighbors, the Palestinians. Which was a core requirement of the "cornerstone" treaty of 1978.