Trending Topics:

Israel and AIPAC keep up efforts to save aid for Egyptian military

Israel/PalestineMiddle East
on 49 Comments
Egypt military
Israel and AIPAC want to continue U.S. military aid to Egypt. Above, a picture from a joint Egypt-U.S. military exercise in 2005. (Photo: U.S. Navy/Wikimedia Commons

Israel is working hard to save Western aid to Egypt. The Israeli government’s lobbying, buttressed by the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), comes as reports emerge about the Obama administration potentially cutting off some aid to the Egyptian armed forces because of its brutal crackdown on the Muslim Brotherhood in recent weeks.

Yesterday, the New York Times’ Jodi Rudoren reported that Israel was planning to “intensify” its efforts to persuade Europe and the U.S. to keep up Western aid to Egypt.

The Israeli effort is not being done in the open–open lobbying by Israel for the Egyptian military would not be viewed positively in Egypt. But an anonymous Israeli official told Rudoren that the Israeli perspective is all about “putting Egypt back on track at whatever cost. First, save what you can, and then deal with democracy and freedom and so on.” The official added: “At this point, it’s army or anarchy.” 

In Washington, AIPAC is following the Israeli government’s lead. As Foreign Policy‘s John Hudson reported: 

AIPAC, which was credited with helping kill an amendment to cut Egyptian aid in July, is now operating behind the scenes in private meetings with lawmakers to keep alive Cairo’s funding, congressional aides from both political parties said.

The $1.3 billion in American aid to Egypt has long been the price paid to guarantee that the Camp David peace treaty with Israel holds together. But today there’s little chance, even without U.S. aid to Egypt, that the peace treaty would unravel or that war would break out between the two countries. Instead, Israel may be keeping up efforts to ensure aid because the country wants an effective military crackdown on Sinai Islamists that threaten both Egypt’s generals and Israel. Additionally, as former intelligence officer Paul Pillar suggests in The National Interest, “the Israeli Right has to be discomfited by any thought of the United States using leverage based on a major aid relationship in that part of the world to get the recipient to change destructive policies.”

The efforts to make sure that there’s a continued flow of aid come as governments around the world debate their response to an Egyptian government crackdown that has killed hundreds of Islamists and opponents of the July 3 coup. European officials will meet tomorrow to discuss suspending aid in the wake of the violence in Egypt. 

As for the Obama administration, its response remains unclear. While the president announced last week that the U.S. would suspend joint military exercises with the Egyptian military, the much more important question of U.S. military aid to Egypt looms large.

The Daily Beast’s Josh Rogin reported yesterday that the Obama administration had secretly suspended military aid to Egypt. Rogin wrote:

In the latest example of its poorly understood Egypt policy, the Obama administration has decided to temporarily suspend the disbursement of most direct military aid, the delivery of weapons to the Egyptian military, and some forms of economic aid to the Egyptian government while it conducts a broad review of the relationship. The administration won’t publicly acknowledge all aspects of the aid suspension and maintains its rhetorical line that no official coup determination has been made, but behind the scenes, extensive measures to treat the military takeover of Egypt last month as a coup are being implemented on a temporary basis.

The White House denied the report today. As the Washington Post‘s Anne Gearan explained:

The Obama administration is in the midst of a case-by-case review of aid programs for Egypt to see whether any should be suspended in light of the actions of the military-backed government. So says the administration, which insists the review does not equal a hold or a suspension of aid — yet.

But even if Rogin’s report is true, the suspension of aid would be a symbolic move. The vast majority of the $1.3 billion in annual military aid has already been disbursed. It’s only $585 million in aid that’s at stake.

So the real question is whether the full package of U.S. military aid will be disbursed next year. Given the history of U.S. policy, and Israel’s efforts to ensure the aid keeps flowing, it’s likely that military aid will continue.

Alex Kane
About Alex Kane

Alex Kane is a freelance journalist who focuses on Israel/Palestine and civil liberties. Follow him on Twitter @alexbkane.

Other posts by .


Posted In:

49 Responses

  1. agatharchides
    agatharchides
    August 20, 2013, 10:22 pm

    “The Israeli effort is not being done in the open”

    Truthfully, if it is making headlines on the New York Times, the Washington Post etc, I can’t say they are doing a terribly good job of keeping it quiet. Successfully kept secrets tend not to be seen in newspaper headlines.

  2. giladg
    giladg
    August 20, 2013, 10:32 pm

    So Alex, what pisses you off more? Is it that there is violence in Egypt or that someone in Israel, by some annonymous report, has said something about the situation? Why don’t you share with us your vision for Egypt or is it because there are no Palestinians involved that you don’t give a shit. As long as you can bash Israel you would have done your deed for the day. Is that it?

  3. August 20, 2013, 10:43 pm

    This is great news. The beginning of the end as I see it. US lawmakers can kid themselves for only so long just how interested in America’s welfare Israel’s backers are. Which is to say not at all. And when Zionists get in a sweat, and their false beards fall off, perhaps it’s even enough to turn those lawmakers’ stomachs. (No guarantees, mind.)

  4. Blank State
    Blank State
    August 20, 2013, 10:47 pm

    “Israel and AIPAC keep up efforts to save aid for Egyptian military”

    Of course. Since the Camp David Accords we have been bribing Egypt to play nice with Israel.

    “Aid”= Arms + billions to buy arms.

    So, if we stop the bribery, there is no longer any incentive for playing nice, eh? And the last four decades of “aid” suddenly becomes an arsenal aimed squarely at Israel.

    Poetic justice. Open the gate, the chickens are comin’ home to roost.

  5. Kathleen
    Kathleen
    August 20, 2013, 11:23 pm

    thanks Alex. The other day Hostage stated that Senator Leahy has the ability to shut the aid valve off on his own.

    Would be really interesting to see how these Egyptian military hot shots personally benefit from the U.S. aid. How it is distributed etc

  6. Taxi
    Taxi
    August 21, 2013, 3:38 am

    Egyptians don’t care about the USA aid package anymore. They themselves are rejecting the aid while a confused America, is being aipac-led by the nose again, into begging the Egyptians to take the aid.
    http://www.egyptindependent.com/news/tamarrod-starts-petition-reject-us-aid-scrap-peace-treaty-israel
    http://www.intrepidreport.com/archives/10560

    USA (on its knees): Please oh please dear great Egypt, please take our money please please just take it.
    Egypt (arms akimbo): Nope nope nope.
    israel (nervous, to usa): Offer them more money – give them dollars, give them drones – just give them anything they want, anything – you hear me, give them anything! Well… except their freedom… and a nuke.

    • OlegR
      OlegR
      August 21, 2013, 6:31 am

      Oh come on Taxi dear.
      We are all friends here …

      • Taxi
        Taxi
        August 21, 2013, 3:09 pm

        “Friends”? Eeeeew oleg!

    • seanmcbride
      seanmcbride
      August 21, 2013, 9:47 am

      Taxi,

      Most Americans are reacting with revulsion to the massacres that have been committed by the Egyptian military. Typical responses:

      1. article; David Remnick; Days of Rage; The New Yorker; August 26, 2013

      http://www.newyorker.com/talk/comment/2013/08/26/130826taco_talk_remnick

      2. article; Jon Lee Anderson; Egypt’s Dirty War?; The New Yorker; August 21, 2013

      http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/comment/2013/08/in-egypt-echoes-of-latin-america.html

      Enthusiastically embracing and praising these developments doesn’t strike one as a wise political move.

    • MRW
      MRW
      August 21, 2013, 12:10 pm

      Taxi,

      That Intrepid Report link is excellent, excellent, excellent. One of my comments that did not see the light of day in time to add to the conversation on another thread was a report from Asia Times that Americans simply do not know about.

      Egypt was on the verge of starvation when [the] military pushed out Mohammed Morsi. Most of the Egyptian poor had been living on nothing but state-subsidized bread for months, and even bread supplies were at risk. The military brought in US$12 billion of aid from the Gulf States, enough to avert a humanitarian catastrophe. That’s the reality. It’s the one thing that Russia, Saudi Arabia and Israel agree about.

      and this

      America’s whimsical attitude towards Egypt is not a blunder but rather a catastrophic institutional failure. President Obama has surrounded himself with a camarilla, with Susan Rice as National Security Advisor, flanked by Valerie Jarrett, the Iranian-born public housing millionaire. Compared to Obama’s team, Zbigniew Brzezinski was an intellectual colossus at Jimmy Carter’s NSC. These are amateurs, and it is anyone’s guess what they will do from one day to the next.

      By default, Republican policy is defined by Senator John McCain, whom the head of Egypt’s ruling National Salvation Party dismissed as a “senile old man” after the senator’s last visit to Cairo. McCain’s belief in Egyptian democracy is echoed by a few high-profile Republican pundits, for example, Reuel Marc Gerecht, Robert Kagan, and Max Boot.

      Ah, I see MW finally approved it:
      http://mondoweiss.net/2013/08/us-had-as-much-a-hand-in-egypt-as-in-chile-leftwing-perspectives-on-the-massacre.html#comment-586187

      • American
        American
        August 21, 2013, 1:05 pm

        “”Egypt was on the verge of starvation when [the] military pushed out Mohammed Morsi. Most of the Egyptian poor had been living on nothing but state-subsidized bread for months, and even bread supplies were at risk. The military brought in US$12 billion of aid from the Gulf States, enough to avert a humanitarian catastrophe.””

        Hummm……and all this starvation and lack of elec. and so forth was brought on in the short period of Morsi rule and did not exist and/or wasnt headed that way durng Mubarack…..and then suddenly….. Saud and others ‘cared’ right after Morsi was removed? Hummm….did they thnk Morsi wouldnt use their aid money to buy bread for the starving?
        Yea, that must have been it.

      • American
        American
        August 21, 2013, 1:59 pm

        Humm……..what does the – intrepidreport.com – remind me of?
        Let me ‘substitute’ Israel for Egypt in the intrepid complaint/manifesto in some paragraphs.

        Forcing Israel to bend to US will be a mistake
        Washington’s wishy-washy utterances on the political crisis have already soured ties and any attempt to curtail settlements will spell doom for a critical alliance
        By Linda S. Heard
        Posted on August 20, 2013 by Linda S. Heard

        America’s sway on Israel is heading towards a zero end game. President Barack Obama has alienated America’s biggest ME ally and is hacking away at a 65-year-long relationship.

        Netanyahu said it all when he attacked the US in the Washington Post, saying: “You are leavng Israel. You turned your back on the us and we Jews won’t forget.”

        A visit by Kerry who turned up in Israel not to mediate, but rather to vent against “the settlements,” was the straw that broke the camel’s back. He was politely told to take a hike. Hours later, the government pulled up the drawbridge on foreign mediation/meddling, saying that it served only to embolden the Palestine terrorist.

        With a heavy heart, the decision was taken to do some bombing in Gaza and protester clearning in Palestne. No nation would permit anyone to lob home made rockets at them or allow protesters to camp out in their occuped parcels. The death toll was tragic. However, the Hamas and Gazans leadership must be blamed for refusing to compromise and presenting themselves as victims to garner sympathy from the outside world.

        Obama’s wishy-washy utterances are not what the world expects from the so-called leader of the free world. If he has a policy going forward, rather than serial knee-jerk reactions, it’s not clear. “We’ve been blamed by supporters of Israel, We’ve been blamed by the Palestnes ” he admitted. Sir Winston Churchill famously said: “We can always count on the Americans to do the right thing, after they have exhausted all the other possibilities.”

        One would be hard pressed to find a single Israeli that has a good thing to say about his administration. Obama has refrained from using the ‘apartheid ’ word that might threaten America’s annual aid to the Israel military, yet he has hinted that settlements could affect it. He has not punished the EU for it’s wthhold of research grants which Israelis interpret as a slap.””

        The US mainstream media, including the New York Times editorial board, is pushing for the Israel settlement to be frozen.. In the meantime, America’s sycophants in the EU, Britain, France and Germany, are cooking up ways of punishing Israel after their failed attempt to achieve weighty condemnation against Israel in the UN Security Council.

        On Friday, Israelis watched with disbelief as Palestine terrorist threw rocks at the IDF armed with AK-47s, who were only tryng to keep order in a protestor stand off.

        If Obama thinks he can force Israel to bend to his will, he’s mistaken. King Netanyahu made an unprecedented announcement assuring the World that Israel had their backs in the fight “against terrorism” and warning that Israel’s ..and the world’s stability is being threatened by “haters.” His message was promptly backed by Egypt, Jordon and the kngdoms of the UAE, Kuwait, and Bahrain .””

        Yep, …..it’s all sooooooooooooo familiar.
        booga booga ALQ,- booga booga the MB, -booga booga Hamas- booga booga ,what or what will the US do wthout us, –booga bogga,whatever happens in the ME cause you dont support us will be your fault….booga booga booga booga.
        My reply would be ‘great’!…bye bye , please do go fuck yourselves. LOL

        .

    • AlGhorear
      AlGhorear
      August 21, 2013, 12:28 pm

      @Taxi

      I wish I could share your optimism, but all signs point to the return of a Mubarak era military dictatorship and police state.

      Civilian allies of the July 3rd coup like Mohamed ElBaradei, who resigned in protest after the massacre of civilians, is now being charged with the crime “betrayal of trust” and is locked up in prison.

      An Egyptian Court orders the release of Mubarak from prison.

      The military is in complete control. 17 of the 25 provincial governors named by El- Sisi are generals and two 2 are police commanders.

      “Prominent activists who had opposed both Mr. Mubarak and Mr. Morsi immediately denounced the appointments as a return of the old autocracy. “Sisi is Mubarak,” the activist Alaa Abd El Fattah wrote in a Twitter message echoed widely.

      Even some founders of the petition drive that paved the way for Mr. Morsi’s ouster began for the first time to question the leaders they had helped bring to power. “Our reasons for revolting against the two regimes were the same, so it’s not right for governors to be appointed this way,” Hassan Shaheen, an organizer of the petition drive, known as Tamarrod, said, according to the state newspaper Al Ahram.”
      From NYT article here

      Then there’s this article by Patrick Cockburn in the Independent: Egypt on the brink of a new dark age, as the generals close in for the kill where he writes: “The generals are now closing in for the kill in every sense of the phrase. The Brotherhood are demonised as “terrorists” who must be exterminated. Propaganda on state-run media is as hate-filled and mendacious as anything on Baghdad television during Saddam’s bloody campaigns against Shia and Kurdish insurgents. A few Brotherhood supporters may have guns but most are demonstrably peaceful and unarmed, as is illustrated by the casualty figures. Even so, as corpses accumulate in the mosques, the Foreign Ministry spokesman Bader Abdel Atty claimed the demonstrators “are raising al-Qa’ida flags in the heart of Cairo. They are using machine guns against civilians.”

      In other words, there is going to be a fight to the finish with both sides believing the other has bitten off more than it can chew. The army and security forces control most of the instruments of power and are very unlikely to lose, but can they emerge as an outright and conclusive winner? For all their expressions of dismay at last week’s bloodbath, the US and the EU states were so mute and mealy-mouthed about criticising the 3 July coup as to make clear that they prefer the military to the Brotherhood. Given that 500 Egyptian military officers a year – including General Sisi and the air force head General Reda Mahmoud – train in the US they will be well-attuned to what America wants or will accept.

      Unsurprisingly, generals and security men prescribe military solutions for political problems. And, if force at first fails, they are likely to see this as a reason to use more force rather than seek compromise. This is a lesson of the Turkish military coup in 1980 in which hundreds of thousands were jailed and tortured, and likewise of the Algerian military takeover in 1992, designed to avoid an election victory by an Islamic party. Military dictatorships often succeed by their own lights, but at horrendous cost to the societies they are supposedly trying to protect. Egyptians will be lucky if they are not at the start of a new dark age of military repression. ”

      The Rafah border remains closed.

      There doesn’t seem to be much hope in this scenario.

      • Sumud
        Sumud
        August 22, 2013, 2:58 am

        There doesn’t seem to be much hope in this scenario.

        Only if Egyptians return to the streets in the millions and scare the hell out of the military.

        Perhaps Mubarak’s imminent release will wake them up.

    • Shingo
      Shingo
      August 22, 2013, 10:57 pm

      Egyptians don’t care about the USA aid package anymore.

      Of courser not, thanks to Saudi Arabia stepping in an offering to foot the bill. That doesn’t mean they are as dependent and desperate for aid as they have ever been. Without aid, Egyptians will starve – simple.

      USA (slapping Egypt’s wrist): Here your welfare cheque
      Egypt (wiping snot from it’s nose and blood from it’s hands): That’s not as much as the Saudi monarchy is paying us to drop our pants and bend over.
      Saudi Arabia: Shine my shoes bitch
      USA (on its knees): Please oh please dear great Egypt, please take our money please please just take it.
      Egypt (to Saudi Arabia): Yesser master. Can I also offer you a happy ending?

      • Taxi
        Taxi
        August 24, 2013, 7:42 am

        Shingo,

        Stick to conspiracy theorizing and give up playwriting – you’re really not very good at it. Your dialogues are cumbersome, unfocused and melodramatic – not to mention your penchant for plagiarism.

        Besides, you weren’t in Egypt seeing with YOUR OWN EYES, plenty of popular banners that said: “Obama out, Putin in”. Oh wait, don’t tell me: you can see Egypt right out of your window in Australia, on a clear day.

        It’s ridiculous, considering the old established ties between Russia and the Egyptian army (since the days of general Nasser), to think that Putin is gonna let Saudi Arabia elbow him out of backing either Syria or Egypt: militarily, economically, and diplomatically. And no ingenious conspiracy theory by you can change this fact, hard as you twist and shout and try.

        But you go ahead and believe all you want that the Egyptian army sold out the WHOLE of Egypt and its WHOLE future to the Saudis, for a poxy 8 billion dollars. (This particular theory of yours, for sure, takes the absurdity biscuit!)

        Keep hating on Egypt – the interim government is moving forward anyway despite your ridiculous smartypants assertions.

  7. Citizen
    Citizen
    August 21, 2013, 3:48 am

    $1.3 B + $585M to Egypt + $3.5 B + interest +$17B (indirect aid) to Israel + humanitarian aid to Palestinians to pay for Israel’s occupation of OT & Israel’s destruction there = the realistic total US annual aid to benefit Israel

    This sum does not include other stuff, such as impact of the Oil Embargo
    on Americans, and the unbalanced FTA (our first one), and on-going competition with US businesses (jobs) with Israel’s businesses subsidized by US, etc

  8. Citizen
    Citizen
    August 21, 2013, 4:19 am

    Too, the US aid to Jordan is a bribe to Jordan to play nice with Israel.

    Israel wants what borders it has secure; US aid to Egypt and Jordan goes a long way there, at least up until now…

    Israel could care less about what this arrangement costs the US-Egyptian-Jordanian masses. Israel is all about Israel, mostly, Jewish Israel. At the moment it’s worried because some Egyptian cops were killed on the desert border. http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/aug/19/egyptian-police-ambush-israeli-concern

  9. Citizen
    Citizen
    August 21, 2013, 4:27 am

    US has already stopped delivery to Egypt of some F-16s (in July), and some Apache helicopters to be delivered are under scrutiny now. As well, a joint military exercise was cancelled.

    I imagine Israel fears cut off of aid to Egypt under US law and principles because it raises the specter of such a thing happening to aid to Israel, which actually violates certain US laws that have never been enforced. They could be.

    Most Americans pay no attention to US foreign policy, and even less attention to US foreign aid. But aid to Egypt is now all over the news; even a little bit about how it’s always been tied to the Egypt-Israel peace treaty.

  10. bilal a
    bilal a
    August 21, 2013, 5:21 am

    Both the EU and US are condemning the violence against Copts in Egypt partly to justify an even handed (?) reaction to the massacre in Rabia. But:

    Tariq Ramadan tweets:

    Courageous and honest Coptic voices are gradually being heard : such as Father Youssef Ayoub, from al-Minya, which states that the burning of Coptic churches are the work of “baltaguiyya” (militia offenders bribed by the Army to spread violence and disorder). Journalist Robert Fisk was strongly suspecting this scenario. The old propaganda’s methods used by previous dictators Sadat and Mubarak …

    http://www.twitlonger.com/show/n_1rm16a2

  11. amigo
    amigo
    August 21, 2013, 5:53 am

    Why does Israel support murderous dictators , I ask myself?.

    Well, when you are the so called “only Democracy” in the Middle East, why would you want competition.

    The Zionists could care less about ordinary Egyptians (MB or otherwise)seeking freedom.

    Zionists care only about themselves which why we should sanction,isolate and boycott them out of existance.

    Zionists make it so easy to detest them.

    • Woody Tanaka
      Woody Tanaka
      August 21, 2013, 3:50 pm

      “Why does Israel support murderous dictators , I ask myself?.”

      Because it has no interest in human rights if it benefits the Jewish people in its state to favor human rights abusers.

  12. HarryLaw
    HarryLaw
    August 21, 2013, 6:38 am

    The Tamarrod movement started a petition under the name “stop foreign aid”, because of the undue meddling by the US in Egyptian affairs, also to regain Egypts complete sovereignty and control over its internal affairs etc. Fair enough, but since Egypt cannot feed itself, will Tamarrod also reject the 8 billion dollars aid coming from those bastions of democracy in Saudi Arabia and other GCC countries in support of the Egyptian military? Which clearly is intended to “meddle” and on a far bigger scale than the US.

  13. gingershot
    gingershot
    August 21, 2013, 8:01 am

    Jim Lobe is exploring this phenomemon in the Neocon camp with the apparent ‘split’ between Pro-Continued Aid camp of William Kristol versus Robert Kagan’s ‘Stop-Continued Aid’ camp who is advising cutting aid (which apparently now includes Sens McCain and Graham in Stop-Aid camp, since they ‘ve most recently flipflopped)

    This ostensibly puts McCain and Graham in the OTHER CAMP than Netanyahu.

    Ha – I don’t believe it for a moment. I bet it’s more like the two halves of the same plan

    Pick your flavor of Israeli ice cream – chocolate or vanilla – now we have Neocons who favor cutting aid and Neocons who want to cut aid but both who will make sure whether Plan A or Plan B – or by creating apparent tension or competition between Plan A and Plan B – it will ultimately work for the most cynical Israeli advantage possible.

    Haaretz is reporting that there are new opportunities for Israeli relationships with other Middle Eastern tyrannies that might be developing as the US loses influence – I’m sure there is a longer game the Kagan and the ‘Cut-Aid camp’ are playing. Perhaps they think it’s better to replace US Aid to Egypt with fresh BILLIONS in aide from Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and other regimes – and this is only the start of a whole new plan where the Egyptian military continues to be supported, it’s just that the US is replaced

    Great – watch the Neocons now OWN both sides of the debate while working for the same Israeli principles – namely, to use whichever course of action we take and GAME that to the max

    To me this is nothing more than full spectrum ‘Neocon’ dominance of the discussion – twisting whichever way we go to Israeli advantage

    Lobe’s article:

    ‘Neocon Princelings Kristol, Kagan Split on Egypt’

    http://www.lobelog.com/neocon-princelings-kristol-kagan-split-on-egypt/comment-page-1/#comment-563623

    • seanmcbride
      seanmcbride
      August 21, 2013, 12:42 pm

      Gingershot,

      This is a perfect example of Israel, the Israel lobby and neoconservatives running circles around their political opponents, most of whom don’t have a clue about the game in play. No wonder Israel keeps coming out on top.

  14. seafoid
    seafoid
    August 21, 2013, 8:23 am

    Israel, KSA, Qatar, Bahrain, Kuwait and the UAE are united in their fear of democracy in the Arab world.

    Beidh an lá linn

    • Ziv Galant
      Ziv Galant
      August 21, 2013, 12:26 pm

      Not correct friend, so far no arab country in history has ever shown it has the ability to form a stable, lasting democracy, the current events happening in the Arab world, but mostly in Syria and Egypt, are a source of great concern to all neighboring countries, because when a neighboring country deteriorates this much, it tends to eventually have a negative affect on its more stable neighbors, whether by refugees, or worse, by dragging them into the violence talking place there

      • AlGhorear
        AlGhorear
        August 21, 2013, 10:54 pm

        @Ziv One of the reasons it’s been so difficult for Arab countries to establish stable democracies is that Western powers, including the US and the UK, have meddled so much in the area, propping up corrupt dictators and dividing up the territory, not to mention supporting the imposition of Israel on the region.

        It would be nice if there was at least ONE democracy in the area. Israel could become that first democracy by abandoning its racist policies, returning stolen land and adopting a constitution that gives equals rights to all of its citizens. After all, that’s what democracy is.

        As it stands now, Lebanon can make a better case for being a democracy that Israel can.

      • RoHa
        RoHa
        August 21, 2013, 11:57 pm

        “One of the reasons it’s been so difficult for Arab countries to establish stable democracies is that Western powers, including the US and the UK, have meddled so much in the area, propping up corrupt dictators and dividing up the territory, not to mention supporting the imposition of Israel on the region. ”

        Certainly hasn’t helped.

      • Taxi
        Taxi
        August 22, 2013, 12:10 am

        Lebanon has been a democracy since 1946: two years before israel was established.

      • Ziv Galant
        Ziv Galant
        August 22, 2013, 4:31 am

        Why does it always goes back to talking about Israel?
        How can Israel affect who’s ruling countries like Saudi Arabia,Iraq,Iran,Egypt? does the people there have no responsibility/control over their lives? is the west behind the Islamic revolution in iran? behind the Baath’ party in Iraq and Syria?
        I agree to the assumption that world powers,(U.S, U.K, Russia,China) have been, and are still meddling in smaller countries.
        in the 1950’s the soviets tried to support the creation of a communist government in Israel, while the Americans supported a western based capitalist one, of course its wrong, but its just the way the world goes, whoever has the money can influence others.

      • seafoid
        seafoid
        August 22, 2013, 5:28 pm

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sJDY3CwtUBQ

        And what would a bot doped out on hasbara know about Lebanon?

  15. Justpassingby
    Justpassingby
    August 21, 2013, 11:22 am

    Disgusting how AIPAC silently try to prop up another dictator with american money.

    • Woody Tanaka
      Woody Tanaka
      August 21, 2013, 3:35 pm

      You don’t expect them to spend their own money, do you? When Uncle Sucker is around?

  16. Walid
    Walid
    August 21, 2013, 11:36 am

    From Reuters today

    (Reuters) – Deposed Egyptian leader Hosni Mubarak will leave jail as early as Thursday after a court ruling that jolted a divided nation already in turmoil seven weeks after the army toppled Islamist President Mohamed Mursi.

    Convening on Wednesday at the Cairo jail where Mubarak is held, the court ordered the release of the military man who ruled Egypt for 30 years until he was overthrown during the uprisings that swept the Arab world in early 2011.

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/08/21/us-egypt-protests-idUSBRE97C09A20130821

    and from the Globe and Mail:

    Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, which along with Kuwait have promised Egypt $12-billion (U.S.) in aid since Morsi’s ouster, have frowned on Mubarak’s detention all along. Arab diplomats said the conservative Gulf monarchies had lobbied for the release of a man they once valued as a strong regional ally.

    http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/world/egypt-court-orders-release-of-mubarak-former-leader-could-be-freed-on-thursday/article13891201/

  17. RJL
    RJL
    August 21, 2013, 12:19 pm

    Justpassingby-move along; go take a ride with taxi. Israel’s opinion is a tiny fragment of what motivates Washington. The Saudis are the real power behind American behavior, and despite their “holy” religious throne, they want the MB out of business, for good. What you guys/gals should be complaining about is why the US doesn’t send massive humanitarian relief to the starving Egyptians. Forget the F-16 fighters; the only reason America has supplied these unnecessary additional planes is to “keep the balance of power” in line with Israel . I.E.-the Egyptians hate Israel, and Jews, and that’s cynically exploited, always has been, by our government. And you two fools think all aid to Egypt is really for Israel. Talk about anti-semitic drivel.

    • john_manyjars
      john_manyjars
      August 21, 2013, 8:03 pm

      Hoo-boy, didn’t take long for the old ‘Anti-Semitic’ card to be played on this thread. Funny, as odds are you’re of white European descent, hardly ‘semitic’ after all.

    • Blank State
      Blank State
      August 21, 2013, 10:51 pm

      “Israel’s opinion is a tiny fragment of what motivates Washington”

      HORSESHIT.

  18. American
    American
    August 21, 2013, 12:21 pm

    Egypt’s ElBaradei to face court for ‘betrayal of trust’

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/08/20/us-egypt-protests-elbaradei-idUSBRE97J0XD20130820

    CAIRO (Reuters) – Mohamed ElBaradei, Egypt’s former interim vice president, is being sued for a “betrayal of trust” over his decision to quit the army-backed government in protest at its bloody crackdown on the Muslim Brotherhood.
    The case points to the prospect of a new wave of politically driven lawsuits being Anti-government activists had called those suits, many of them accusing people of “insulting the president”, a form of political intimidation.

    ElBaradei’s case, brought by an Egyptian criminal law professor, Sayyed Ateeq, will be heard in a Cairo court on September 19, judicial sources said on Tuesday.
    ElBaradei, the former head of the U.N. nuclear agency and co-leader of the secular National Salvation Front (NSF) grouping, was the most prominent liberal to endorse the military’s overthrow of Mursi on July 3”>>>>>

    Near as can fnd Sayyed Ateeq was/ is with Tamrod group and says ElBaradei resigning is betrayal of the rev-coup.
    Sounds lke the Gestapo to me…..you cant leave the “Reich”….you’re either in it or else.

    • Kathleen
      Kathleen
      August 22, 2013, 1:39 pm

      El Baradei made a very bad move supporting that coup. Lots of people who would like to see him out of the picture in Egypt

  19. Nab
    Nab
    August 21, 2013, 5:29 pm

    If the recent historical narrative of the Middle East’s political and social dissonance is any clue, Egypt is heading no where near constructive political, economic or social progress anytime soon, in light of this newly inflated sectarian divide.

    Segregation in Egypt has existed all through Mubarak’s reign of course; social and religious (no need to mention Mubarak’s political and military monopoly), but this sort of divide, which came about after the brotherhood gained political power democratically, reeks of Lebanon style sectarianism.

    While Egypt has been one of the few countries in this region not effected by such sectarian conflict in the decades that passed, and understanding that Lebanon’s religious make-up is much more diverse in comparison. I do believe the country runs the risk of similar consequences which plague its neighbors if events continue to unfold so chaotically.

    One needs only to run through Al Jazeera documentary’s first 5-7 parts to see how political alliances swiftly alternate, while the masses of all sects are caught in the middle. Eventually, a sort of tribal mentality takes hold over these same people (formerly progressive, religious, liberal etc.), where the ‘other’, no matter how ideologically similar in thought to you they may be, will remain the other, even as your fellow countrymen/women. A point political figures of course abuse in the name of security, freedom, cultural/religious values. Whether you are a Sunni, Shia, Druze, or Christian of any stripe or color, you will always look to one of your own for the protection of your basic rights, it matters little if you agree with them or not; the country you call your own does not have a functioning rule of law or any resemblance of due process. All of course on the back of years of instability, Lebanon had more than it’s fair share of social inequality and outside interference.

    Of course the historical narrative in Lebanon is complex and shouldn’t be over simplified. I just believe, solely my opinion drawing parallels, that what I’ve written above is a culmination of all the factors that drove the country into the dysfunction it now operates through. Organized chaos.

    This brings me to my next point on outside intervention (a topic also mentioned in other comments I believe). The idea that the loose alliance of the US, Israel, the Gulf monarchies and others operate in a vacuum is withdrawn. While I’ve not really studied details of the legal implications of continued aid to Egypt within US law (others on this site have done a tremendous job in explaining it), I doubt that would be deterrence for the powers that be to deliver on what they believe is in their best interest. Should the US cut aid, the Gulf countries will step in as has already been evident, in coordination with the US and Israel. The oddest regional alliance since the Prophet Mohammad and Omar: Saudi and Co. with Israel vs. Iran and Co with Russia. The interesting development is Russia’s more politically overt approach recently, evident in its resistance at the UN (along with China). This Gulf aid will come with the same strings attached, the same bribes paid, and to the same people who will slowly be guided center stage into the political arena (Mubarak come back?). Although I didn’t imagine such an obvious move of absolving him from relatively all the charges would come at such a sensitive cross roads, bold and empowered move. If not, it’ll be “house arrest” or one-way ticket to safety south-east of the border.

    Egyptians on the ground may scream at the top of their lungs rejecting US aid (and do so sincerely). But from a practical perspective, US aid is synonymous with Saudi aid, and Saudi aid is similarly so with UAE aid; no matter how strongly, and again sincerely, the Egyptians on the ground believe in that ideal.

    • Walid
      Walid
      August 22, 2013, 2:43 am

      “Of course the historical narrative in Lebanon is complex and shouldn’t be over simplified. ”

      Nab, you’re looking for north in the wrong direction. It was explained by Cond. Rice in her call for the “New Middle East”. Iraq has been broken up, so has the Sudan, Libya and soon Syria and Egypt. The Monarchies are going along with it and fueling it to keep it away from their own shores, but in time it will come around and bite them too; everything else is detail. By getting Mubarak off the hook, they are hoping to buy a bit more time for themselves. A new Sykes-Picot is currently underway with no way of stopping it and the geographical area will be totally changed.

      • Nab
        Nab
        August 22, 2013, 8:59 pm

        “The Monarchies are going along with it and fueling it to keep it away from their own shores, but in time it will come around and bite them too; everything else is detail.”

        I agree. The detail, and as a result of that, the consequences of the big picture are what I was aiming to understand. People on the ground in Egypt (or elsewhere) may pause and rationalize, but ultimately what fuels their direction/loyalty and their acquiesce in unknowingly fulfilling the big picture (divide and conquer) is very much detached from the goals of the big players.

        That’s what I meant when I wrote:

        “I just believe, solely my opinion drawing parallels, that what I’ve written above is a culmination of all the factors that drove the country into the dysfunction it now operates through.”

        Factors being outside control and intervention. Maybe I should’ve clarified.

        “A new Sykes-Picot is currently underway with no way of stopping it and the geographical area will be totally changed.”

        The geographical area will definitely change. The idea of a new Sykes-Picot style arrangement, though, seems redundant. The majority of Arab states are already heavily influenced and propped up by respective regional and foreign powers. Unless I understood you incorrectly and you mean a revised division of the spoils/responsibility.

      • Taxi
        Taxi
        August 23, 2013, 1:38 pm

        “A new Sykes-Picot is currently underway with no way of stopping it and the geographical area will be totally changed.”

        Walid, without dividing up Syria, Iraq, and Egypt, there is NO Sykes-Picot moving forward. Till that happens (which doesn’t look likely at the moment, hard as the bastards try), your statement of “no way of stopping it” is completely off the realistic mark. But I can understand that you would say this: you lately being the political nihilist-depressive.

  20. gingershot
    gingershot
    August 21, 2013, 6:31 pm

    Why doesn’t Netanyahu start paying the Egyptian military directly, any tyrant his heart desires?

    Time to change Israel’s whole frame of reference

  21. kalithea
    kalithea
    August 21, 2013, 6:44 pm

    While the Egyptian military eats its own with U.S. made utensils and on the U.S. tab, Zionists grab their snacks and enjoy yet another spectacle of Arabs killing Arabs. They pale in comparison to the Romans in the breadth of their depravity.

  22. Kathleen
    Kathleen
    August 22, 2013, 1:37 pm

    I am a slow reader. About to the middle of Scahill’s “Dirty Wars” so depressing what our military has done to others in the name of so called “freedom” Which to me means paving the way or protecting multi nationals interest, and in the case with Iraq Israel’s interest. Have to put down Scahill’s book after four or five chapters to try to digest and measure how many dark facts I can take in during one sitting. Incredible book. Depressing but incredible. Anyone see or hear any of the MSM outlets interview Scahill about this book? Nothing on any of the liberal imperialist (not the case for Chris Hayes) shows on MSNBC.

  23. irmep
    irmep
    August 23, 2013, 1:01 pm

    AIPAC appears to have blocked two no-brainer legal determinations. Classified US government publications are full of evidence that Israel is a nuclear weapons state. But legally determining that would mean cutting *direct* aid to Israel under the Symington and Glenn Amendments (or force presidents to publicly issue a “waiver” as with Pakistan, which might embarrass Israel).

    It is also abundantly clear that Egypt underwent a coup d’état. But legally determining that would mean cutting what is essentially *indirect* aid to Israel.

    Hence, AIPAC, which often engages in illegal activity directly and through surrogates (such as Michael Goldan) http://www.amazon.com/Foreign-Agents-Committee-Fulbright-Espionage/dp/0976443775/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1356717802&sr=8-1&keywords=foreign+agents demands that laws passed by Congress not be enforced if it inconveniences Israel. Essentially, under AIPAC’s guidance, the U.S. must break some of its most sensible laws.

    • irmep
      irmep
      August 23, 2013, 1:21 pm

      …or is it three? (that AIPAC is a foreign agent of the Israeli government…)

Leave a Reply