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Tag: Cairo

Why Egypt Is Not Interested In Peace

Remember this?

And this?

One article I found on the Internet – don’t know who it’s by – reads as follows:

“Hitler never had more than 37 percent of the popular vote in the honest elections that occurred before he became Chancellor. And the opposition among the 63 percent against him was generally quite strong. Hitler therefore would have never seen the light of day had the German Republic been truly democratic.”

The introduction to the thesis continues:

“Unfortunately, its otherwise sound constitution contained a few fatal flaws. The German leaders also had a weak devotion to democracy, and some were actively plotting to overthrow it. Hitler furthermore enjoyed an almost unbroken string of luck in coming to power. He benefited greatly from the Great Depression, the half-senility of the president, the incompetence of his opposition, and the appearance of an unnecessary backroom deal just as the Nazis were starting to lose popular appeal and votes.”

What will the new anti-Semitic, Koran guzzling psycho of Egypt hold in the cards for the future of the region? Will he be……Hitleresque?

Hear about this?

A bunch of “freedom seeking”, whip cracking, Pharoahites have taken the anti-Israel protests in Cairo once step further.

What began as vandalism of the Israeli embassy in Cairo last month when Hamas militants opened fire on an Egged bus close to the Sinai border with Eilat has quickly escalated. Anna Theresa Day of PolicyMic.com has a nice slideshow of last month’s situation. See it Associated Press reports:

“Outside the Nile-side Israeli embassy in Cairo’s neighborhood of Giza, thousands of protesters battled riot police and army troops into the early morning hours, hurling rocks at them. The police and army troops responded with tear and firing live ammunition into the air to try and disperse the crowd. Several cars, police vehicles and trees on the streets outside the embassy were set ablaze. The violence subsided by around 6 a.m.

The state MENA news agency said 837 people were injured in the overnight clashes, including at least 46 policemen, while 19 protesters were arrested.
Earlier on Friday, hundreds of protesters tore down the embassy’s security wall with sledgehammers and their bare hands. After nightfall about 30 protesters stormed into the embassy.
Just before midnight, the mob reached a room on one of the embassy’s lower floors at the top of the building and began dumping Hebrew-language documents from the windows, said an Egyptian security official.

In Jerusalem, an Israeli official said the protesters reached a waiting room on the lower floor. Israel’s ambassador, Yitzhak Levanon, his family and other embassy staff were rushed to Cairo airport and left on a military plane for Israel, said Egyptian airport officials.

All officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to release the information or speak to the media.
Since the February fall of Mubarak — who worked closely with the Israelis in his 29 years in power — ties have steadily worsened between the two countries.”

One Jerusalem bro, old Ethan Bronner and the New York Slimes’ Egypt bureau Chief, David Fitzpatreck reported:

Two Israeli military jets arrived around dawn to carry away the ambassador and about 85 other diplomats and family members. One Israeli diplomat, the deputy ambassador, stayed behind, taking refuge in the American embassy, diplomats familiar with the arrangements said.

For Israel, the embassy attack and evacuation represented the most ominous deterioration yet in its relationship with its neighbor in the seven months since the revolution that ousted former President Hosni Mubarak, a strongman who suppressed the Egyptian public’s hostility to Israel in order keep his country’s alliance with Israel and the United States the pole star of its foreign policy.

The Egyptian Prime Minister, Essam Sharaf, who serves under the council of military officers acting as a transitional government, called an emergency cabinet meeting on Saturday as the Egyptian interior ministry put police on alert to guard against more violence.

For Egypt’s interim military rulers, allowing the invasion of a foreign embassy is an extraordinary breach of Egypt’s international commitments that is raising security concerns at other embassies as well…

… The attack on the embassy marked a new turn toward violence in the previously peaceful protest movement that has flourished in Cairo’s Tahrir Square since the revolution. At a demonstration called Friday to reiterate a litany of liberal demands, thousands of hard-core football fans showed up looking for revenge on police who attacked some of them after a match earlier in the week, and they injected a new impulse toward mayhem into the day…

… As an angry mob stormed the embassy and tore down its flag for the second time in a month, Israel appealed to the United States for help. Coming a week after Turkey expelled Israel’s ambassador over its refusal to apologize for a deadly raid on a Turkish ship, the attack left Israel facing crises in relations with its two most important regional allies, and ambassadors in neither country…

…The violence also raised concerns about whether Egypt’s military-led transitional government would be able to maintain law and order and meet its international obligations, and to what extent popular rage unleashed by the Arab Spring would send a chill over the region…”

Restoring Egypt’s Synagogues

Farouk HosnyJust in time for the festival of Pesach, Egypt’s culture minister says that it will shoulder the costs of restoring the country’s synagogue’s.

Farouk Hosny says that his ministry views Jewish sites as much a part of Egypt’s culture as Muslim mosques or Coptic churches and the restorations would not require any foreign funding. This marks a turn in attitude for the Egyptian artist and culture minister.

On Sunday, the 12th century Ben Maimon synagogue, named after Maimonides, was rededicated in a ceremony including half a dozen Egyptian Jewish families who fled the country long ago.

Ben Ezra SynagogueHosny committed his ministry to restoring all 11 synagogues across Egypt, three of which have already undergone renovation. The most visited synagogue is that of Ben Ezra – located in Cairo’s Christian quarter near a number of old churches, was restored some years ago.

“There were some lectures on the Jewish sites in Egypt and the temple. It was nice, emotional and nostalgic,” said Raymond Stock, an American “close” to the Jewish community in Cairo.

The Jewish community of Egypt, which dates back millennia and at its peak in the 1940s numbered around 80,000, is down to several dozen, almost all of them elderly. The remainder were driven out decades ago by mob violence and persecution.

Synagogue, CairoEgypt and Israel fought a war every decade from the 1940s to the 1970s until the 1979 peace treaty was signed. None the less, Egyptian vibrations remain deeply unfriendly to Israel, and anti-Semitic stereotypes still appear in the Egyptian media.

Last September, Hosny blamed a conspiracy “cooked up in New York” by the world’s Jews when he lost a bid from becoming the next head of the U.N.’s agency for culture and education.

During this time, Hosny’s candidacy raised an outcry because of a threat which he had made in the Egyptian parliament in 2008 to personally burn any Israeli book he found in the Alexandria Library.

Obama’s Egyptian Overture

He came with all the fanfare and adulation as a newly crowned Prince of Peace. Only this time, Barack Hussein Obama came to speak in Cairo as the 44th President of the United States of America, and spoke before a packed audience within the opulent Presidential Palace, the former residence of King Faruk, the last Egyptian king. He began his fine toned and eloquent address by saying “Al Salaam Aleikum”, May Peace be Upon You, and told the packed auditorium that he hopes to usher in a new era of relations between his country and the Nation of Islam, of which he said, the country of Egypt and City of Cairo are one of that religion’s finest realms.

Obama in EgyptIn regards to the religion of Islam, Obama told his audience that America is “not at war with Islam”, but will confront violent extremism and their aspiration to “kill as many innocent people as they can”, especially those small groups (such as Al Qaeda) which have gone against the positive dictates of the religion and have committed gross acts of terror, such as 9-11; and who still vow to commit more such acts.

After noting what his country plans to do in regards to the situation in Iraq, Afghanistan, and other places where American soldiers are still on active duty, Obama reached the part of speech we all had been waiting for , i.e. that part regarding his plans and desires for dealing with the situation involving Israel and the Palestinians. While he did say that his country has a ” very close and historic relationship with the State of Israel”, and mentioned the long persecution of the Jewish People and the horrors of the Holocaust ( “anybody who denies the Holocaust is ignorant and hateful”) he then countered by comparing this with the “suffering of the Palestinians in pursuit of a homeland” and that for more than 60 years they have lived in refugee and displaced person’s camps due to the occupation ( in all of Israel, perhaps?).

And again, he received loud applause when he spoke about “two states for two peoples to live side by side in peace and security” and that “America will not turn her back on a state for the Palestinian People”.

Side by side – peace and security. Many in Israel wonder how this will be accomplished, especially in light of current realities; and in light of Hamas’ (and even Fatah’s ) relations with Israel.

Obama also went on to speak about achieving democracy in the Middle East, saying that “elections alone do not make democracy”. He was obviously referring to the situation in counties like Egypt where the situation is far from being democratic (probably making his host Hosnei Mubarak squirm a bit). He also talked about women’s rights (a topic probably added by his wife Michelle and by his Sec. of State Hillary Clinton), saying that women who are denied an education are denied equality. He said: “I am convinced that our daughters (he has two) can contribute as much as our sons to society” and promised that his country will help Muslim countries to give more opportunities to women” (that must have gone over like a lead balloon to any male listening in countries like Saudi Arabia or Afghanistan).

We’re sure Mr. Obama does realize that Israel gives more opportunities to women than any country in the entire region, and that this will always be the case. Perhaps Palestinian women might pick up on this message though, providing their men-folk are willing to let them do so.

He ended his speech by quoting the Golden Rule, which he noted is also found in the Quran: “to do unto others as you would have them do unto you”. In a way, this “rule” has been practiced in this region, although not exactly in a positive framework. And that is where the entire matter may be found; i.e. in how this rule can be more positively applied.

In any respect, people will be analyzing his speech in the weeks and months to come, as well as being on the lookout for any hidden meanings. He did tell the young people of the region (including young Israelis we presume) that “you have the ability to change and reshape this world”.

Let’s all hope that this “changing and reshaping” will be within a positive framework.

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