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Switch to Forum Live View Israel's Sinai problem
6 years ago  ::  Apr 12, 2012 - 1:51AM #1
Posts: 16,967

Here is an article by an Israeli about the problem in the Sinai now facing Israel because of what is happening inside Egypt.


Below is a key paragraph from the article.

"One veteran Israeli military commentator urges realism, saying that when it comes to holding down terror from Sinai, "it's clear that the Egyptians won't be doing the job for us." Instead, if the policy of retaliating against Gaza targets doesn't work, he says Israel "will have to mull the option of allowing [its forces] to operate in the Sinai" -- especially if the alternative is "grave economic damage to tourism and port activity in Eilat and vicinity as a result of rocket fire." To which he could have added, of course, the endangerment of life and limb."

This could get messy to say the least. What do members think about this?


Libertarian, Conservative, Life member of the NRA and VFW
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6 years ago  ::  Apr 12, 2012 - 4:10AM #2
Posts: 6,223


Since I live in an area where the Egyptian and the Gaza borders meet, I have had some experience with both.

The Hamas have for years sought ways to initiate attacks across the Egyptian border. There were occasions when attacks across the Egyptian border took place, along with a certain degree of non-terrorist related illegal border crossings from Sinai. Most of the latter were people looking to better their economic well being and the Sinai Bedouin made quite a profit transporting these people to the border, or when they wanted to save expenses, to the center of Sinai where they were left to die. There is a Muslim of extraordinary courage and good will who lives in Egyptian Rafiah who seeks out the bodies of these poor souls and sees to their proper burial, since they are mainly Muslims. There are thousands of graves in his cemetery. All of this has been missed by our resident humanitarians. But that's another issue.

The Egyptians have been fairly competent over the years in keeping order in the Sinai. However the transport of guns, cigarettes, drugs and prostitutes as well as economic refugees looking for work in Israel has placed the Sinai Bedouin in possession of a mountain of money. One consequence is that like drug dealers in the USA, they can easily offer payoffs to Egyptian military officers and soldiers to look the other way, when necessary. I doubt that much will change with the additional Egyptian forces though costs to the Bedouin may go up; but they can easily afford this.

The situation along the Israeli-Egyptian border is not too stable and has not been for quite a while. It was not too important because the former Egyptian government was not looking for an excuse to abrogate the peace treaty. The importance of the instability has grown not because the instability along the border has increased but because of the changes in Cairo.

I expect that Israel will operate in the Sinai to protect its borders. These operations will be designed to stay under the radar, so long as the Egyptians in the vicinity look the other way. If they don't, and a lot of that depends on decisions in Cairo, things will get difficult.


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6 years ago  ::  Apr 12, 2012 - 2:27PM #3
Posts: 8,220

I think Habesor is rifght. I'll just add that, both parties need to be a little flexible and need to work with each other. Egyptians are not in good shape and things will probably change over there.

I think even if a new government comes to Egypt, they need to work with Israel not only to have security in both sides of border, also to chart a course to settle disputes between Palestinians and Israelis. Which is the heart of all problems. Just looking at it as a border issue will not work.

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6 years ago  ::  Apr 12, 2012 - 7:36PM #4
Posts: 19,045


The dispute between the Arab Palestinians and Israel is merely a creation of the Arabs who did not wish to deal with all of their actual issues. It is not the driving issue, it is the excuse, a way of avoiding the problems which beset the Arab world. If and when the Arabs wish to deal responsibly with their problems the dispute between the Arab Palestinians and Israel will simply disappear. 

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