Back to my last post. On the Gaza issue Egypt is a follower of the Israeli-Saudi policies which aims to keep the strip blockaded and life for its residents harsh with the goal of getting rid of its Hamas rulers. That also fits in nicely with the ambitions of the PA/PLO sheriffs of Ramallah. Yet there is another school of thought that has seen bandied about publicly: that indicates Saudi and Israeli goals in Gaza may diverge at some point. It goes like this: does the Likud, and Netanyahu, really want to get rid of Hamas? Gaza and its various Islamist groups (not just Hamas) are such a useful red herring for the Israelis, such an extra complication to any negotiations on a peace deal. Any complication, any extra few months could mean many thousands more ‘facts on the ground’ in the West Bank. More time to avoid complicated and unpalatable political decisions.
Remember what I posted a few weeks ago about the old Arab urban legend of the history of Hamas and the possible role of the Mossad.
Mohammed Haider Ghuloum
“After the military ouster of the Islamist government in Cairo last year, Egypt has led a new coalition of Arab states — including Jordan, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates — that has effectively lined up with Israel in its fight against Hamas, the Islamist movement that controls the Gaza Strip. That, in turn, may have contributed to the failure of the antagonists to reach a negotiated cease-fire even after more than three weeks of bloodshed………………”
He is wrong of course about Egypt having “led” a coalition. A battered unstable Egypt is not “leading” any coalition on anything these days. In fact Egypt has not led independently on any regional issue since the day Anwar Sadat was assassinated in 1981. It has gotten worse in the year since the military coup of 2013. Under the military rule of Generalisimo Field Marshal Al Sisi, Egypt is being led, in regional matters, by a couple of Persian Gulf absolute tribal ruling families, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab .There has been a drive by the princes and potentates, and the Israelis, to inflate the appearance of a leading role for Al Sisi. This is self-serving, given the historical importance of Egypt and its size as the largest Arab country which can be put to good diplomatic and public relations use. That and its potential role as the host country of the impotent League of Arab Nations.
Mohammed Haider Ghuloum