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April 24, 2014 / 24 Nisan, 5774
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘Coup’

Sen. Leahy: Obama Secretly Suspended Egypt Military Aid

Tuesday, August 20th, 2013

The office of Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT), head of the Appropriations State and Foreign Operations Subcommittee, told The Daily Beast that military aid to Egypt has been temporarily cut off.

“[Senator Leahy’s] understanding is that aid to the Egyptian military has been halted, as required by law,” said David Carle, a spokesman for Leahy.

If it’s done as required by law, why is the U.S. government keeping it a secret that it believes the regime change in Egypt was a military coup? If it is, indeed, temporarily suspending most of the military aid to Egypt, where is the public announcement that we don’t send money to governments that were installed by a coup?

After skewering Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu hard—through the good services of the NY Times—for his attempts to preserve stability in Egypt and the integrity of the peace treaty, now the administration is attempting to punish the naughty Egyptian generals, but without making a big deal out of it.

State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki was asked on Monday about the suspended aid, and told reporters the aid is not officially suspended.

I suppose the Egyptians can use the officially unsuspended aid money the same way Israelis can live in the officially unfrozen homes in East Jerusalem…

“After sequestration withholding, approximately $585 million remains unobligated. So, that is the amount that is unobligated,” Psaki said.

I looked up “unobligated” and means funds that have been appropriated but remain uncommitted by contract at the end of a fiscal period. In other words, an I keep, you don’t get kind of relationship.

“But it would be inaccurate to say that a policy decision has been made with respect to the remaining assistance funding,” Psaki clarified.

In other words, I keep, you don’t get, but it’s not forever.

The Daily Beast quotes two Administration officials who explain it was the government lawyers who decided it would be more prudent to observe the law restricting military aid in case of a coup, while not making a public statement that a coup had taken place.

Bret Stephens, a deputy editorial page editor of The Wall Street Journal, wrote on Monday (A Policy on Egypt—Support Al Sisi):

“What’s realistic and desirable is for the military to succeed in its confrontation with the Brotherhood as quickly and convincingly as possible. Victory permits magnanimity. It gives ordinary Egyptians the opportunity to return to normal life. It deters potential political and military challenges. It allows the appointed civilian government to assume a prominent political role. It settles the diplomatic landscape. It lets the neighbors know what’s what.”

By taking the opposite approach, making it harder for the new Egyptian government to bring the internal conflict to a conclusion, the Obama Administration is promoting and prolonging chaos in yet another country. Which is why, I suspect, Senator Leahy has spoken to the Daily Beast in the first place, to stop this blind march over the cliff.

Middle East analyst Brian Katulis from the Center for American Progress, told the Beast he thought the Administration was “trying to maintain maximum flexibility,” but he suggested that this horse is long out of the barn. “Egypt’s struggle has become so intense, polarized, and violent, and I worry that no matter what move the United States makes now, the competing power centers in Egypt might continue down the dangerous course they’ve headed.”

Unless, of course, the U.S. is making clear, with loud noises and a light show, that it supports stability in Egypt, and in order to hasten new elections, it will not suspend military aid to Egypt. In fact, with its financial and military might, the U.S. will do everything it can to restore stability and democracy in Egypt.

But that would require President Obama to get over the insult of the Egyptian nation ignoring his wishes and dethroning his favorite Muslim Brother president.

Egypt Declares National Emergency, Military Coup Now Official

Wednesday, August 14th, 2013

Egypt’s interim President Adly Mansour declared a month-long state of emergency Wednesday, putting the stamp on what the Obama administration has refused to call a military coup. Mansour “has tasked the armed forces, in cooperation with the police, to take all necessary measures to maintain security and order and to protect public and private property and the lives of citizen,” according to a statement from his office.

So far Wednesday, the police have “maintained security and order” by killing hundreds of people and wounding thousands other. Official estimates of the death toll keep rising and now are at approximately 100, but reports from independent journalists indicate the number is far higher.

A government official praised the security forces for “exercising self-control and high-level professionalism in dispersing the sit-ins” and blamed the Muslim Brotherhood for the “escalation and violence.” The Muslim Brotherhood urged Egyptians to take to the streets across the country to “stop a massacre.”

Al Jazeera‘s Rawya Rageh  reported from Cairo, “This battle is much bigger than what you’re seeing…[in] the casualties. This is a fight for the future of the country, and something that will determine the course of the Egyptian revolution that has been going on for two years now.”

 

A Coup by Any Other Name Allows US Aid to Continue

Monday, July 8th, 2013

The fact that the White House has decided to continue providing aid to Egypt, despite what has taken place in that country over the past week, is big, big news.

The White House Spokesperson, Jay Carney, with his frequent invocation of the delay weapon known as calling a sticky situation “complicated,” made clear to reporters that the administration will take its time reviewing the matter before making any  final decision on U.S. aid to post-Morsi Egypt.

“I think it would not be in the best interest of the United States to immediately change our assistance programs,” Carney said.

Why is this big news?

Because the overthrow of the Egyptian regime headed by former President Mohamed Morsi is, technically speaking, a coup.  What happened was a coup backed and initiated by mass support for Morsi’s overthrow – technically called a “democratic coup,” but a coup is the correct term, nonetheless.

That matters, because the United States is forbidden, by law, to provide aid to governments which assume power through a coup.

And there are those who immediately pointed out the dangers of supporting any government which takes power as the result of a coup.  Most famously, perhaps, was Senator John McCain (R-AZ).

“Reluctantly, I believe that we have to suspend aid until such time as there is a new constitution and a free and fair election,” McCain said on CBS’s “Face The Nation.”

Other U.S. politicians in leadership positions refused to join McCain in his call to suspend aid, some by refusing to call the ouster of Morsi a “coup,” while others simply refused to address the pertinent legal issue and instead preferred to focus – understandably, if not responsibly – on what would most promote U.S. interests in Egypt: stability.

Egypt’s Ambassador to the U.S., Mohamed Tawfik, consistently insists that the ouster of Morsi – his own boss until just days ago – does not amount to a coup.

In a National Public Radio interview with Tawfik from July 5, the interviewer attempts to corner the ambassador, forcing him to admit that Morsi’s overthrow was a military coup that renders whatever comes next as illegitimate, Tawfik is resolute.  The interviewer paints the Muslim Brotherhood as if it were a benign political organization which has now been thwarted after dutifully following all the rules.

SIEGEL: Ambassador Tawfik, your country, Egypt, has this problem, which is how to deal with the Muslim Brotherhood, a very old and powerful institution in Egyptian life. And one reading of what’s happened this week is, if you’re an active member of the brotherhood, is, well, so much for electoral politics. You can win the presidency. You can win the parliament. You can win a referendum on the constitution that your guys drafted, and it’ll all be negated. Take other means of trying to advance your cause, not elections. Try to subvert the state instead, the way perhaps you used to do.

TAWFIK: That would be a completely wrong way to proceed. What we want to do now is we want to correct the mistakes made by President Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood. We want an inclusive process. We want everybody to be included. We want every single Egyptian, including Muslim Brotherhood members, to feel that they own the country. Everybody should enjoy their rights.

We cannot accept to have a situation in which the whole country is run for the interests of a particular group. This was the case with Mubarak, and this – again, unfortunately, Morsi repeated the same mistake. We have to stop making that mistake. This is the time for true democracy. The people of Egypt will accept nothing less.

So the US government is in a bit of a pickle.  Does it withhold support from a leadership backed by the masses of the Egyptian people? And does it do so despite pledging enormous support to Morsi’s Muslim Brotherhood government as it giddily dispensed with freedoms and commitments of fairness and diversity so fast that millions took to the streets to boot them out?

Another significant factor the U.S. has to consider, is that the Egyptian economy is so far past being called a train wreck, there are no longer even any railroad ties with which people can make fires to warm themselves.  The only powerhouse industry in Egypt used to be tourism, and the past few years of relentless violence has crippled that industry.  Unless the US provides essential aid, what had been the most stable Arab country, the anchor of the Arab world, may disintegrate into, well, what so much of the rest of the non-oil-rich Arab world looks like.

US Backs Wrong, Evil, Horse in Egypt

Monday, July 8th, 2013

President Obama’s statement in response to the military coup in Egypt is remarkable:

As I have said since the Egyptian Revolution, the United States supports a set of core principles, including opposition to violence, protection of universal human rights, and reform that meets the legitimate aspirations of the people. The United States does not support particular individuals or political parties, but we are committed to the democratic process and respect for the rule of law. Since the current unrest in Egypt began, we have called on all parties to work together to address the legitimate grievances of the Egyptian people, in accordance with the democratic process, and without recourse to violence or the use of force.

The United States is monitoring the very fluid situation in Egypt, and we believe that ultimately the future of Egypt can only be determined by the Egyptian people. Nevertheless, we are deeply concerned by the decision of the Egyptian Armed Forces to remove President Morsi and suspend the Egyptian constitution. I now call on the Egyptian military to move quickly and responsibly to return full authority back to a democratically elected civilian government as soon as possible through an inclusive and transparent process, and to avoid any arbitrary arrests of President Morsi and his supporters. Given today’s developments, I have also directed the relevant departments and agencies to review the implications under U.S. law for our assistance to the Government of Egypt.

Although the diplomatic language doesn’t specifically say that it would please the US if the military were to turn around and restore Morsi to power — it says “a democratically elected civilian government,” not “the … governmentand asks the army to avoid “arbitrary” arrests, presumably allowing ones for which the army can give reasons — it clearly expresses the idea that the coup is an unwarranted intrusion of authoritarianism to overthrow a democratic and legitimate regime.

Apparently, for Obama, the fact that the Muslim Brotherhood attained power after a more-or-less free election, outweighs the considerations that the Brotherhood’s own political principles are thoroughly anti-democratic, with the constitution it sponsored calling for clerical rule via shari’a, and inferior status for women and non-Muslims. It also condoned, if it it did not encourage, violence and murder against Christians, as well as employing torture and rape to suppress popular opposition. In addition, the impetus for the army’s action was nothing less than what has been called the largest political demonstration in human history.

All this can be ignored, it seems, because the regime came to power through an election, a distinction shared with Adolph Hitler and Hamas. Does anyone think that having achieved power, the Brotherhood would ever expose itself to a fair election again?

Although the official line is that the US was neutral, Barry Rubin explains what the Obama Administration did to help the Brotherhood:

Let us remember that four years ago Obama gave his Cairo speech sitting the Muslim Brotherhood leaders in the front row. President Husni Mubarak was insulted and it was the first hint that the Obama Administration would support Islamist regimes in the Arab world. Then Obama vetoed the State Department plan for a continuation of the old regime without Mubarak. Then Obama publicly announced — before anyone asked him — that the United States would not mind if the Brotherhood was in government. Then Obama did not give disproportionate help to the moderates. Then Obama pressed the army to get out of power quickly, which the moderates opposed since they needed more time than the Islamists to organize.

Many will say that the president of the United States cannot of course control events in Egypt. That’s true. But he did everything possible to lead to this crisis.

Rubin suggested this question for defenders of administration policy:

Does it bother you that the United States is backing a regime led by anti-American, anti-Christian, antisemitic, anti-women, and anti-gay rulers who are unrepentant former Nazi collaborators?

Now that the regime is overthrown, there will need to be a new policy. Let’s hope that this time it agrees with the president’s stated goal of “opposition to violence, protection of universal human rights, and reform that meets the legitimate aspirations of the people.”

Copt Shot

Sunday, July 7th, 2013

As violence, lawlessness and murder escalate in Egypt, Islamists shot and killed a Coptic priest in El Arish in Northern Sinai on Saturday.

Coptic priest, Mina Aboud Sharween, was walking in the Masaeed area of El Arish when he was shot and killed.

Coptic Pope Tawadros, the spiritual leader of Egypt’s 8 million Copt had recently praised the military coup that removed the elected Muslim Brotherhood president. There is no love lost between Egypt’s Copts and Egypts Islamists, who view each other as religious enemies. Egypt’s Copts have been treated particularly bad by the Islamists.

Egyptian violence has gone part and parcel with attacks in and from the Sinai, as Islamist make use of the Sinai to attack Israel, as well Egyptian opposition forces and resources, such as gas lines.

Egypt Turning Into Syria as Youths Thrown off Roof (Graphic Video)

Sunday, July 7th, 2013

In a graphic reminder of how close Egypt is to the edge, if it hasn’t crossed that line already, Islamic supporters in Egypt were caught on camera throwing  two youths off the roof of a building. If that wasn’t enough, they began beating the boy’s crushed bodies, reminiscent of the act of cannibalism that underscored the complete breakdown of civilization in Syria, when a Syrian rebel ate the heart of a Syrian soldier, on camera.

The youths were celebrating the overthrow of the democratically elected Muslim Brotherhood president, Mohammed Morsi. The Islamists decided to put an end to that.

Islamic and revolutionary opponents have been fighting in the streets since the military coup. The Islamists seem to have an actual majority in Egpyt, where between 30% – 50% of the nation are illiterate.


Warning: Graphic!


As an aside, following the precedent of Hamas’s violent coup in Gaza, Judea and Samaria will clearly descend into the same chaos and anarchy if Kerry has his way, and a Palestinian state is created on this side of the Jordan river.

“Iranian Agent” ElBaradei Appointed Interim Egyptian PM

Saturday, July 6th, 2013

Following the military coup that ousted the democratically elected Muslim Brotherhood President Mohammed Morsi, opposition leader Mohamed ElBaradei has been appointed interim Prime Minister of Egypt.

ElBaradei received the Nobel Peace Prize in 2005 for his work as chairman of the International Atomic Entergy Agency (IAEA). And he was one of the Egyptian leaders that led to the ousting of president Hosni Mubarak.

But Israel has a very different and not particularly positive view of the man.

In 2011, Israeli officials made some very harsh accusations against ElBaradei, including calling him an “agent of Iran”, claiming that ElBaradei assisted Iran in covering up their nuclear program. In the past, ElBaradei  defended the Iranian nuclear program, claiming it was peaceful.

Eventually ElBaradei”exposed” some information about the Iranian nuclear program and said they “might” be attempting to build nuclear weapons, but Israel said, that none of the information he “exposed” was unknown or even new.

On his part, ElBaradei said there was a perceived double-standard in relation to Israel’s nuclear weapons program and in particular, Israel’s not being a signatory to the NPT (Non Proliferation Treaty). ElBaradei wants Israel to sign the NPT, which would then force Israel to open up its nuclear weapons cache (if it exists) to foreign scrutiny.

Iran is a signatory to the NPT, but that obviously hasn’t stopped them from pursuing nuclear weapons.

ElBaradei told the New York Times in 2009 that “Israel would be utterly crazy to attack Iran”.

In 2011 he also told Der Spiegel in an interview that Israel has a peace treaty with a single man [Mubarak], not Egypt.

Congratulations Egypt.

Egyptian Army to Morsi: You’re No Longer the President

Wednesday, July 3rd, 2013

Al Ahram reports that a source close to Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi said that the Egyptian Army informed Morsi at 7 pm on Wednesday, that he is no longer the president of Egypt.

The Egyptian Army is carrying out a “full military coup” and the army has placed a travel ban on the country’s embattled President Mohamed Morsi, officials told the AP.

The coup came at the end of the 48 hours Egypt’s army gave Morsi to respond to the demands of protesters who have filled the country’s streets in recent days.

The streets of Cairo were jammed again on Wednesday, with competing pro- and anti-Morsi rallies.

In a statement posted on the Egyptian Presidency Facebook page, Essam El-Haddad, Egypt’s national security adviser called the on-going situation “a full military coup,” and warned that it will only lead to more violence.

“Today only one thing matters. In this day and age no military coup can succeed in the face of sizeable popular force without considerable bloodshed. Who among you is ready to shoulder that blame?” he wrote.

Gen. Abdul Fattah Al-Sisi said the military was fulfilling its “historic responsibility” by ousting Morsi, who was elected only a year ago. Morsi failed to meet the people’s expectations, most notably on economic issues, and the crowds took him down. Now these same crowds erupted victoriously as the announcement was made.

Ahead of the statement, troops moved into key positions around the capital and surrounded a demonstration by Morsi’s supporters in a Cairo suburb. Citing an unnamed presidential source, the state-run newspaper Al-Ahram reported that “the General Command of the Armed Forces told President Morsi around 7 PM (1 PM) that he is no longer a president for the republic.”

Morsi offered to form an interim coalition government “that would manage the upcoming parliamentary electoral process, and the formation of an independent committee for constitutional amendments to submit to the upcoming parliament,” he said in a posting on his Facebook page. He noted that hundreds of thousands of supporters and protesters had packed plazas around the country, and he urged that his countrymen be allowed to express their opinions through the ballot box.

But as night fell Wednesday, troops surrounded a pro-Morsi demonstration at a Cairo mosque and took control of a key bridge across the Nile River. Gehad El-Haddad, a spokesman for the Muslim Brotherhood, reported via Twitter that tanks were on the streets.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/egyptian-army-to-morsi-youre-no-longer-the-president/2013/07/03/

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