Israel Expresses Concern Over Significant US Suspension of Military Aid to Egypt


Credit: Hossam el-Hamalawy ???? ???????? / Foter / CC BY-NC-SA

The Obama administration's recent decision to suspend much its military aid to Egypt has been criticized by the military-backed Egyptian government.

From the BBC:

Egypt has criticised a decision by the US to suspend a large part of the $1.3bn (£810m) in aid it receives, following months of political turmoil.

A government spokesman in Cairo said the move was wrong and Egypt would "not surrender to American pressure".

The US said this week it was suspending the delivery of large-scale military systems and withholding cash support.

The New York Times reports that Israeli officials responded with "a mixture of disappointment and alarm" to the news:

Israel views the aid as part and parcel of its 1979 peace treaty with Egypt, and essential to the maintenance of stability in the region.

Israel has been involved in the Obama administration's discussions on the cuts. Israeli officials refused to comment publicly on the matter on Wednesday, in part because there had been no official announcement yet from Washington.

But one Israeli official, speaking on the condition of anonymity because of the delicate diplomacy involved, warned that the implications of punitive cuts in Egypt's aid could go far beyond the issue of Israeli-Egyptian relations. The United States is playing with fire, he said.

Unfortunately, the peace treaty between Israel and Egypt relies heavily on the Egyptian military being supported by the U.S. However, the suspension of aid does not affect aid aimed at improving the security situation in the Sinai Peninsula, the region that borders Israel and the Gaza strip. Last month, the Egyptian military stepped-up its efforts against Islamic militants in the Sinai Pensinsula, who are a threat to Israel's security. The New York Times reports that since President Morsi's removal Israel and Egypt have enjoyed greater cooperation when it comes to security matters:

Israeli officials and experts say that the security cooperation between Israel and Egypt under Gen. Abdul-Fattah el-Sisi, the Egyptian military leader who removed Mr. Morsi, has grown closer than ever. The Egyptian military has been fighting Islamic militants in the Sinai Peninsula, along the border with Israel, and destroying tunnels that were long used by the Hamas militant group to smuggle weapons into Gaza, where they could be used against Israel.

Last August, I wrote an op-ed for the Orange County Register in which I argued that the U.S. should cancel all foreign aid to Egypt immediately. Read it here

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  1. Here is what I do not understand: is not Israel a relatively well off country? If the aid to Egypt is so important to them, why do they not pay it themselves?

    1. Because good Egyptians would never take filthy Jewish money. But they will take American money.

      So happy my tax dollars go to both sides of a conflict. If we’re going to pick sides, we should just pick one.

      1. So all we need to do is convince Egypt that America is secretly run by the Jews. Problem Solved.

      2. Then funnel Israeli money through the U.S.

      3. What conflict? Egyptians themselves may hate Jews but the Egyptian government & military are officially at peace with Israel. There are no “sides” in that sense, and if there were Egypt would lose. Trust me. And this time the Israelis might actually keep their land gains.

  2. Can we just make Israel our 51st state? Then at least the payoff could be justified as SELF-defense.

      1. The amount of money we give the Egyptian military would be far better spent promoting the likes of “Hot Egyptian Women,” which is to say, we should be undermining religion in general (and Islam in particular) in the interest of secularizing foreign societies.

        1. Egypt has a long pre-Islamic history their people are kept ignorant about; this could boost nationalism & secular Egyptian culture but unfortunately Egyptians are extremely uneducated. Must be the classroom size or something.

  3. A government spokesman in Cairo said the move was wrong and Egypt would “not surrender to American pressure”.

    Excuse me? What does that mean? If I give $500 a month to my dodgy neighbor, and then I say, “Yeah, you’re going to have to make it on your own” and he waves his fist at me saying, “I will not surrender to your pressure” what do I infer about his next action?

    1. Yeah – that was an….interesting reaction.

    2. America wants Egyptian “democracy” which means letting a bunch of half-literates, whose religious leaders don’t even believe in human rights as a valid concept, elect the Muslim Brotherhood or some other Caliphate-promoting Islamist party.
      Electing an Islamist party that cares more about an Islamic Caliphate than Egypt’s national interests means the promotion of Jihad terrorism and war with Israel.
      War with Israel means the conventional or nuclear destruction of Egypt’s military and the loss of its lands to the victorious Infidel Jews.
      The military has obvious objections to this and of course they’ll see anyone who opposes them as supporting terrorism and the possible destruction of Egypt.

  4. “Never fight a ground war in Asia”

    More like, “never bother engaging in anything in the Middle East unless your goal is to receive in return frustration, backlash, black eyes, grief, criticism, retaliation, double crossing, angst and woe.”

    What a shithole. Best to observe it from afar. And not send any money there to be poured into the endless sands.

    1. I see no reason for us to be involved, even as world cop, except maybe to contain any nonsense to the region. And the latter only if we simply must act as world cop.

      1. If peace sells then who is voluntarily buying?

      2. I would kind of change the term to World Bouncer. Your conflict or bad behavior spills into our territory or an ally, we just throw you back over the border and let your drunk ass walk back home. We don’t need to occupy your living room, educate your kids and make sure you stay clean and sober.

        1. You don’t have to go home, but you can’t stay here.

          1. Now it’s closing time, the music’s fading out
            Last call for drinks, I’ll have another stout.
            Well I turn around to look at you,
            You’re nowhere to be found,
            I search the place for your lost face,
            Guess I’ll have another round
            And I think that I just fell in love with you.

  5. I suspect most people aren’t even aware of just how colossally stupid our aid to Egypt has been.

    Part of our aid package has been selling Stinger missiles to the Egyptian government, which is to say that it was official US policy to sell man-portable anti-aircraft missiles to the Muslim Brotherhood, a known terrorist affiliate (at minimum).

    1. Those are details which are overshadowed by the fact that Aid to Egypt is a U.S. Jobs/stimulus program. Jefferson, grave, spinning.

  6. Israel views the aid as part and parcel of its 1979 peace treaty with Egypt, and essential to the maintenance of stability in the region.

    You’ve got to be fucking kidding me. Not only are we paying extortion money, but we’re paying it on somebody else’s behalf?

  7. “the peace treaty between Israel and Egypt relies heavily on the Egyptian military being supported by the U.S.”

    I don’t see any provision of the treaty that requires U.S. funding beyond the immediate Sinai withdrawal:…..y_1979.pdf

    On the other hand, U.S. law does require suspension of all aid to any country that is subject to a military coup.

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