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Israelis assured Egyptian military there’d be no cutoff in US aid, NYT says (and Israel denies)

Israel/Palestine
on 48 Comments

The New York Times has a lengthy reported piece on how US efforts to cut a deal in Egypt to resolve differences peacefully between the Muslim Brothers and the leaders of the military coup were undercut by a variety of forces.

The emirates, along with Saudi Arabia, had swiftly supported the military takeover [in early July] with a pledge of billions of dollars, undermining Western threats to cut off critical loans or aid.

The Israelis, whose military had close ties to General Sisi from his former post as head of military intelligence, were supporting the takeover as well. Western diplomats say that General Sisi and his circle appeared to be in heavy communication with Israeli colleagues, and the diplomats believed the Israelis were also undercutting the Western message by reassuring the Egyptians not to worry about American threats to cut off aid.

When Senator Rand Paul, Republican of Kentucky, proposed an amendment halting military aid to Egypt, the influential American Israel Public Affairs Committee sent a letter to senators on July 31 opposing it, saying it “could increase instability in Egypt and undermine important U.S. interests and negatively impact our Israeli ally.” Statements from influential lawmakers echoed the letter, and the Senate defeated the measure, 86 to 13, later that day.

After the piece first appeared online, the Times appears to have added this paragraph:

Israeli officials deny having reassured Egypt about the aid, but acknowledge having lobbied Washington to protect it.

Raising the issue, if it’s the Israelis lobbying, why isn’t AIPAC a foreign agent? 

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About Philip Weiss

Philip Weiss is Founder and Co-Editor of Mondoweiss.net.

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48 Responses

  1. Justpassingby
    Justpassingby
    August 18, 2013, 9:08 am

    Not surprising. Obama let egyptians get massacred because it benefit Israel. Appaling to say atleast.

    As usual Israel try to cover its lobbying.

    • Ellen
      Ellen
      August 20, 2013, 8:35 am

      It seems that the US media may not be offering cover this time around?

      The Wall Street Journal (yes, the WSJ!) just published an article with the headline U.S. Allies Thrwart America in Egypt

      “The U.S.’s closest Middle East allies are undercutting American policy in Egypt, encouraging the military to confront the Muslim Brotherhood rather than reconcile, U.S. and Arab officials said…..The parallel efforts by Israel, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates have blunted U.S. influence with Egypt’s military leadership and underscored how the chaos there has pulled Israel into ever-closer alignment with those Gulf states, officials said.”

      Even if one were to agree with “A senior Israeli official (who) called the anti-Muslim Brotherhood nations “the axis of reason.” this reminds the US, that Israel’s interests are not always the same as that of the US.

      So why is Israel getting over 3 billion a year from US taxpayers?

      • hophmi
        hophmi
        August 20, 2013, 11:28 am

        “Obama let egyptians get massacred because it benefit Israel. Appaling to say atleast.”

        ROTFLMAO. That’s why Saudi and UAE are kicking in 12 billion. LOL.

  2. gingershot
    gingershot
    August 18, 2013, 9:20 am

    Just how crazy and malevolent is Israeli policy? – particularly in it’s roles (along with the Israeli Lobby in the US) in instigating the current civil wars in Syria and Egypt?

    Israel is up to it’s eyeballs in creating and fomenting these wars – they are critical for survival of the Apartheid in Israel

    This is why Israel is so destabilized by Apartheid – it is the desperate need to prop Apartheid up – NO MATTER WHAT – if it has to hoax the US into a war with Iran, hoax the US into a war with Syria or to goad the US into reinstalling the Mubarak-esque military dictatorship in Egypt. The ‘destabilization’ or belligerency created by the desperate Israeli defense of Apartheid of course sucks the US in as Israel pulls the strings on it’s paid assets in the US Congress and ‘domestic US politics’ in order to support HOWEVER belligerent or unhinged Israel needs to be in order to staave off worldwide boycott of Apartheid

    The brilliant Shir Hever in this linked Real News video elegantly lays it all out and helps connect the dots in the context of the current ‘Peace Process’ farce

    http://therealnews.com/t2/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=31&Itemid=74&jumival=10588

    Israel and her Israeli Lobby are FOMENTING these wars against Syria (when it couldn’t pull off Plan A hoaxing the US into war with Iran) and overthrow of the Morsi government which was so hated by Israel. (Remember President Morsi threatened Israel when Israel was threatening to reinvade Gaza during ‘Pillar of Clouds’)

    Hever ties this Defense of Apartheid Israeli policy into the American Military Industrial Complex but it is Israel that is playing the MIC like a violin

    Israel is destabilizing the world to push Apartheid down the road for a few more years. War with Iran? War with Syria? Civil war in Egypt? – Yea baby, bring them ALL on if it gives Israeli Apartheid a few more years

    It’s the new Israeli Samson Option – pull the US and the world down around it’s ears in order to keep Apartheid afloat

  3. Citizen
    Citizen
    August 18, 2013, 10:22 am

    I believe if none of AIPAC’s funding comes from the Israeli government, it does not have to register as an agent of Israel. AIPAC, while under its original Zionist name, was funded by the government of Israel. Bobby Kennedy went after it to register, so it changed its name and henceforth relied on American donors only.

  4. Citizen
    Citizen
    August 18, 2013, 10:53 am

    The other criteria to register under FARA is control, taking directions from foreign government agents: http://forward.com/articles/4064/leaders-fear-probe-will-force-pro-israel-lobby-to/

    AIPAC handles this by saying it merely coordinates with Israeli agents. It also says its mission is to enhance US-Israel relations, not to work for, or enhance Israeli government relations.

    Obviously the Franklin AIPAC spy case was crushed because it would have opened up this can of worms.

    Registration would make AIPAC’s operations much more transparent, and those involved and how would be out in the open. That would be the practical end of AIPAC as it would raise too many issues of dual loyalty to the public. AIPAC is a flower that thrives in the darkness.

  5. James Canning
    James Canning
    August 18, 2013, 12:56 pm

    Israel lobby probably could guarantee Egyptian generals that US aid would not be cut off.

    • bilal a
      bilal a
      August 18, 2013, 8:44 pm

      see Tariq Ramadan on Israeli-saudi alliance inside Egypt::

      The central question was and remains that of freedom and democracy for the Egyptian people. What is happening today in Egypt is a travesty and a horror. The country is now at the merci of the Armed Forces ; Egypt will now experience summary execution, arbitrary imprisonment, torture and lying at the highest state level. The generals are fully supported by the West, the United States and Israel. This is the only reality. Those who, in their visceral hatred of the Islamists, today support the military and the police as they kill and repress must one day answer for their choice. They must also reveal to us their analysis, their “democratic” political program drawn up in the shadow of the barracks, at the heart of corruption, at the storm center of a Middle East that is now adrift. Their responsibility is immense, over and above the bitter taste of the words they use to encourage and to justify the violent repression of unarmed civilians. Wretched “liberals”, pathetic “progressives.”

      http://www.tariqramadan.com/spip.php?article13046&lang=fr

  6. seafoid
    seafoid
    August 18, 2013, 1:26 pm

    AIPAC isn’t treated as a foreign agent because it’s behind a lot of election campaign funding. Most of the most obnoxious problems in the US (eg Healthcare, guns, Israel) are linked to campaign financing corruption.

    • James Canning
      James Canning
      August 18, 2013, 6:48 pm

      Steady decline of relative power of the US owes a good deal to insane campaign finance laws.

    • hophmi
      hophmi
      August 20, 2013, 11:30 am

      It isn’t treated as a foreign agent because it isn’t directed by the Israeli government. It advocates US foreign policy positions. Period. You want to make every organization that advances foreign policy views you don’t agree with a registered foreign agent? You can start with CAIR.

  7. just
    just
    August 18, 2013, 1:38 pm

    “Raising the issue, if it’s the Israelis lobbying, why isn’t AIPAC a foreign agent?”

    Not only in this situation, but in many, many others, I have often thought the same. They have NO right to promise our money to anyone. This is another step too far. How I wish the ‘average’ American would comprehend what this ‘ally’ really does with our $$$ and how it destroys our reputation and trustworthiness.

    • Egbert
      Egbert
      August 19, 2013, 8:02 am

      I’m sorry to rub it in, but Israel is seeking an increase in its annual aid. US cities are decaying, its people impoverished, its troops exhausted from war, and odds on, the US government will cave on this aid increase.

      • MHughes976
        MHughes976
        August 19, 2013, 9:40 am

        Doesn’t most of the aid to Israel get recycled to certain parts of the United States, whose political representatives are very keen that it should continue? In the right-wing atmosphere of these days direct aid to impoverished cities is very, very bad but military spending that indirectly aids the same places is absolutely fine.

      • James Canning
        James Canning
        August 19, 2013, 2:33 pm

        MHughes – – You are quite right that “defence” contractors try to put contracts in place in states with senators who are especially important in the awarding of “defence” contracts. Ditto as to Congressional districts. But I am not aware of anything similar regarding US funding etc provided to Israel (apart from obvious overlap with “defence” contracting).

      • MHughes976
        MHughes976
        August 19, 2013, 3:50 pm

        I have a feeling, James, that I’ve seen Israeli sources claiming that they keep paperwork proving that they use American aid to buy equipment of all sorts, not just military whizzbangs but even paperclips, from American sources. That’s to say that the subsidy is from the American government to American firms, though the output of those firms goes to Israel for free.

      • James Canning
        James Canning
        August 20, 2013, 2:09 pm

        MHughes – – Yes, this makes very good sense.

      • mijj
        mijj
        August 23, 2013, 5:46 am

        MHughes976 … “That’s to say that the subsidy is from the American government to American firms, though the output of those firms goes to Israel for free.”

        In other words, the control of money is used to increase the destructive capability of Israel instead of being used for creative production which would improve the quality of life for Americans.

    • Ellen
      Ellen
      August 19, 2013, 2:41 pm

      This is what concerns Israel greatly: A close examination of aid to Egypt, will bring aid to Israel under the microscope and raise a cloud of questions for Jack and Jane voters.

      The Philadelphia Inquirer just published this opinion:

      Regardless, U.S. military aid to Egypt, totaling more than a billion dollars annually, should be ended. That aid originated three decades ago to reward Egypt for signing the Camp David agreements of 1979. By signing the accord, Egypt removed itself from what had been a united Arab front in support of a just accommodation for the Palestinians vis-a-vis Israel. The U.S. aid was given to encourage Egypt to live up to this sellout. The result has been disastrous for the cause of peace in the Middle East. The Palestine-Israel conflict has only worsened, and the Arab countries have been neutralized as a pressure force. Israel too was rewarded financially for Camp David, with military aid now topping $3 billion annually. There is little justification for continuation of aid either to Egypt or to Israel……That coalition not only faces pressure from U.S. military contractors, but also from Israel, which supports aid to Egypt because it helps keep that country neutralized and thus allows Israel to continue taking over more Palestinian territory for settlements.
      Read more at http://www.philly.com/philly/opinion/inquirer/20130816_Should_U_S__cut_aid_to_Egypt_.html#0wukSJOkxf3xhQZW.99

      This is the VERY discussion the machine does not want to take place. But it will, and by repressing it now, when it does take place, it will be loud, emotional and irrational. Not in anyone’s interest anywhere.

      • hophmi
        hophmi
        August 20, 2013, 11:37 am

        “This is the VERY discussion the machine does not want to take place. ”

        Yes, Ellen, unfortunately, there is zero evidence to support John Quigley’s recalcitrant Arabism, not to mention his ridiculous assertion that the Israel-Egypt peace treaty was disastrous for Middle East peace.

        Americans overwhelmingly support the continuation of aid to Israel. http://www.pollingreport.com/israel.htm

  8. DICKERSON3870
    DICKERSON3870
    August 18, 2013, 1:52 pm

    RE: “Raising the issue, if it’s the Israelis lobbying, why isn’t AIPAC a foreign agent?” ~ Weiss

    GRANT SMITH’S ANSWER: “[B]ecause the U.S. Department of Justice has unilaterally abrogated its responsibility to enforce FARA (the 1938 Foreign Agents Registration Act) . . .”

    SEE – “1963: The year the Israel Lobby Transcended US Law”, by Grant Smith, Antiwar.com, 3/21/13

    [EXCERPTS] Fifty years ago this May, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee opened a series of unprecedented hearings investigating the clandestine activities of foreign agents active in the United States. The investigation focused most intensively on the operatives and financing of key Israel lobbying organizations such as the American Zionist Council, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, and the American Section of the quasi-governmental Jerusalem-based Jewish Agency. Thanks to a secret memo only declassified in 2010, the public may now know what fears motivated the hearings.
    The March 17, 1961 staff report expressed concerns that “indigenous groups based on racial or national origins have been organized in the United States, and have often concentrated on influencing United States foreign policy in directions designed primarily to promote the interests of other states.” The Senate was particularly – though not exclusively – concerned about Israel-coordinated overseas provocations intended to tripwire the United States into action.Operation Susannah,” an all-but-forgotten 1954 Israeli false flag terror attack on U.S. facilities in Egypt designed to keep international forces stationed in the Suez Canal zone is mentioned twice as a reason for investigating “how they do it.” Although such a line of inquiry was clearly “explosive” the Senate proposal included having “testimony on the Lavon Affair, and similar ‘gray area’ activities.”
    The Senate and a parallel Justice Department investigation uncovered a massive money-laundering scheme by which the Jewish Agency – using its access to Israeli government funding and tax exempt donations from the United States – illegally funneled tens of millions into public relations and lobbying efforts conducted by the top U.S. lobby – the American Zionist Council. Isaiah Kenen, the leader of the AZC’s unincorporated lobbying division called the American Israel Public Affairs Committee – also received Jewish Agency funding, laundered through his privately-owned lobbying newsletter.
    The Justice Department ordered the AZC to begin registering under the 1938 Foreign Agents Registration Act. The AZC fought the order before finally shutting down, but it was a pyrrhic victory. The AIPAC lobbying division split off six weeks after the order, incorporating in Washington and applying for IRS tax-exempt status in 1967. . .
    . . . [B]ecause the U.S. Department of Justice has unilaterally abrogated its responsibility to enforce FARA, people, ideas, money and propaganda campaigns continue to secretly slosh freely between Tel Aviv and Israeli fronts in America with taxpayer funds thrown into the toxic brew. . .

    ENTIRE ARTICLE – https://antiwar.com/blog/2013/03/21/1963-the-year-the-israel-lobby-transcended-us-law/

  9. August 18, 2013, 2:27 pm

    great last point phil, why isn’t AIPAC registered as a foreign agent. if AIPAC was ever forced to be registered their power would die just like dorothy throwing water on the wicked witch.
    for anybody that doesn’t know the background of this issue i highly suggest reading anything and everything by grant smith. he is the leading expert on this matter and it is indeed his specialty.
    phil, i asked you in the piece on the michigan disinvitation issue if you were trying to reach out to the major media big boys to see if they might consider doing a piece on this. i mentioned how big it was for simon on 60 minutes to have done that story awhile ago and if they might have the guts to take this on

  10. seafoid
    seafoid
    August 18, 2013, 5:00 pm

    GOP debates ending aid to Egyptian army

    http://www.haaretz.com/news/world/1.542181

    Presumably Dem voters will support the generals

    • just
      just
      August 18, 2013, 8:58 pm

      If Israel tells them to continue aid, 99.9% of Congress will fold & obey. They will once again ignore our laws and our own national security. And I will wager that not ONE will stand up and reveal that it is Israel who dictates our foreign policy, but they will unfailingly bleat and beat their chests about ‘our greatest ally, our fellow democracy, Israel’s security, etc.’, all the while clutching their pearls and throwing their collective weight behind the massacre (s).

      Business as usual. ugh.

  11. James Canning
    James Canning
    August 18, 2013, 6:23 pm

    Rich and powerful Jews in the US ensure Aipac need not register.

  12. Keith
    Keith
    August 18, 2013, 8:01 pm

    PHIL- “The New York Times has a lengthy reported piece on how US efforts to cut a deal in Egypt to resolve differences peacefully between the Muslim Brothers and the leaders of the military coup were undercut by a variety of forces.”

    Do you really believe that the empire is interested in resolving differences peacefully? Is this a joke? The US is a warfare state which consistently instigates violence to achieve imperial objectives, and has an extraordinarily bloody history in suppressing Third World aspirations. The Egyptian “revolution” wasn’t a revolution, it was an IMF riot/uprising in response to neoliberal globalization. The empire cannot tolerate successful defiance and remain the empire. The rebellion was contained, the people have been fragmented, and now the only significant mass organization is being crushed. Not unlike what happened in Indonesia. Of course, this has to be misrepresented to the folks at home. Will the white man’s burden never end? And it is all coming home to roost!

    • James Canning
      James Canning
      August 19, 2013, 1:54 pm

      @Keith – – It is clear that the US and a number of Europeans countries tried to talk the generals into resolving the problem without employing force.

      • Keith
        Keith
        August 19, 2013, 3:03 pm

        JAMES CANNING- “It is clear that the US and a number of Europeans countries tried to talk the generals into resolving the problem without employing force.”

        Do you believe everything you read/hear in the media? Do you believe that government officials and military spokesmen always speak the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth? Can you conceive of a situation where media statements may contain just a smidgen of propaganda? Personally, I find these public statements so unreliable that I ignore them, particularly when they are at odds with a long history of facts on the ground.

      • James Canning
        James Canning
        August 20, 2013, 2:05 pm

        @Keith – – I find that private comments by well-informed European diplomats tend to be very reliable. The word is that a considerable effort was made to avoid slaughter in the streets.

  13. RJL
    RJL
    August 18, 2013, 9:48 pm

    Are there no arab political action committees, Mr. Weiss and Mr. Canning? And who from the middle east doesn’t support arab/American organizations which lobby Washington? How many universities receive endowments from rich arab benefactors that teach “mideast studies” from a decidedly arab slant? The fact that the Saudis and Israelis find themselves on the same page regarding the MB and the hopefully temporary military control of Egypt is strange, but not so unusual, considering both in their own way are fearful of the Iranians. Oh, Mr. Weiss, no comments on the atrocities being committed against Christians in Egypt, right now? No time to posit your opinion on the latter, when you’re so busy trashing Israel, along with your dedicated staff, and talkbackers? You wouldn’t be a bit prejudiced, and not so humanitarian, after all, would you?

    • James Canning
      James Canning
      August 19, 2013, 2:12 pm

      @RJL – – Relative power of ‘pro-Israel” lobby is of course far higher than various “Arab” lobbies. But you are right to note Muslims and Christians, and Jews and others, are free to provide funding for universities etc, and for newspapers and magazines for that matter.

      I think the civil war in Syria is a direct outgrowth of fear in the Persian Gulf that Iran would force hostilities.

      Fear of Iran, in that aspect, also helped to bring about crushing of MB in Egypt.

  14. anthonybellchambers
    anthonybellchambers
    August 18, 2013, 11:09 pm

    There is a compelling case for cancelling both EU and US aid/funding to Egypt and Israel until both comply with international law and the Geneva Convention on Human Rights, and both renounce violence against ethnic minorities.

    These two states respectively receive $1.3 billion and $6 billion every year from the US in grants, aid, gifts and loan guarantees. Astonishingly there is apparently no requirement that either government account for the use of these massive sums.

  15. giladg
    giladg
    August 19, 2013, 5:25 am

    Thirty six Muslim Brothers die in custody. And no mention on MDWS.
    We know what happens when one Palestinian dies in Israeli custody. Which side of your mouth are you talking out of today Philip?

  16. seafoid
    seafoid
    August 19, 2013, 6:42 am

    http://www.haaretz.com/news/middle-east/.premium-1.542279#Scene_1

    Senior (Israeli) Foreign Ministry official denies NYT report claiming Israeli diplomats instructed to relay message that Egypt’s stability is currently more important than its human rights record

  17. Citizen
    Citizen
    August 19, 2013, 8:52 am

    On a related matter, that insane AIPAC drone Graham cracker is now pushing for a congressional resolution in September authorizing POTUS to attack Iran: http://www.wltx.com/news/article/242923/2/Graham-Congress-Should-Approve-Military-Strike-Against-Iran

    Nothing like threatening and glaringly goading the new moderate Iranian president and calling it rational. He’s the guy that dared Hagel to name one congress person who was afraid of AIPAC.

  18. James Canning
    James Canning
    August 19, 2013, 2:23 pm

    Lindsey Graham actually did try to talk the Egyptian generals into not clearing out the “pro-Morsi” encampments by military force.

    I think Obama has made it very clear indeed that if Iran fails to make a deal with the Six Powers, more sanctions will be put in place. And still more.

    Building nukes is not an option available to Iran.

    • Blank State
      Blank State
      August 19, 2013, 9:14 pm

      “Building nukes is not an option available to Iran”

      And evidence that they are doing so is sorely lacking. But don’t let the facts get in your way.

      Gee wonderful, perhaps we can kill another half million Muslim infants through crippling sanctions, like we did in Iraq.

      And, uh, never mind Iran’s compliance with the NPT, eh?

      It makes me feel very comfortable knowing those peace lovin’ Israeli’s are the ones with the nukes. After all, look at the reluctance they’ve exhibited about using cluster munitions and white phosphrous on civilian populations.

      • James Canning
        James Canning
        August 20, 2013, 2:42 pm

        And of course a Middle East free of nukes is highly important. Obama foolishly has failed to back it. Why? Israel lobby.

  19. Blank State
    Blank State
    August 20, 2013, 11:53 am

    Here you go, monitor.

    http://www.moonofalabama.org/2013/08/open-thread-2013-17.html

    I will also be posting the comments of mine that you censor at a number of other websites that deal with the power of AIPAC, and our continued support for the crimes and travesties Israel commits as a matter of course.

  20. James Canning
    James Canning
    August 20, 2013, 2:14 pm

    @Blank Slate – – You are of course quite right to say there is no evidence Iran is building nukes.

    And Lindsey Graham was an idiot for trying to block any improvement in America’s relations with Iran, after election of new president.

  21. James Canning
    James Canning
    August 20, 2013, 2:19 pm

    @Blank Slate – – Aipac has significant role in determining which US politicians gain huge sums of money from Israel lobby.

  22. Carlo
    Carlo
    August 20, 2013, 5:59 pm

    Here are the top ten corporations that profit from US credits extended to the Egyptian military. There’s similar feedback of course from US grants to Israel.

    http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/americas/united-states/130816/top-10-american-corporations-egypt-military-us-aid

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