By Ted Belman
Egypt cannot be trusted. We know that but our leaders have short memories.
Thousands of Muslims from Gaza returning by ship from the Haj were blockaded in the Gulf of Aquba for days. On the ships were many Hamas terrorists and they had with the $150 million to fund further terrorist activities. Egypt had agreed with Israel to force them to disembark and go through an Israeli checkpoint.
Now Hillel Fendel reports Egypt Defies Israel, Lets 2,300 Gazans Escape Israeli Security
In the past, Egypt had allowed Arabs of Gaza to return via Rafiah, sparking an Israeli protest that wanted Hamas terrorists were thus saved from Israeli security forces. Defense Minister Ehud Barak officially requested of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, during their meeting in Cairo last week, that Egypt route the Arabs through Israel. Barak said that allowing the Arabs to enter via Rafiah was a diplomatic coup for Hamas, in showing that it has ties with an important country. Mubarak agreed to Barak’s request.
In fact, Egypt seemed poised to fulfill Israel’s request this weekend – but Al-Jazeera reported Sunday morning that Egypt had caved in to Hamas and now plans to allow the terrorists to evade Israeli hands by routing them via Rafiah.
Other reports stated that Egypt has not yet decided what to do, and that the Arabs are being bused across the Sinai to temporary camps not far from Rafiah until a decision is made.
Israel has long complained that Egypt is not fulfilling its post-Disengagement obligations to effectively monitor the Rafiah crossing into Gaza. The massive Hamas terrorist infrastructure in Gaza, which has been compared to that of an army, has been almost exclusively built up with weapons and materials smuggled through Rafiah and in tunnels under the Philadelphi Corridor.
Hmmm, I wonder what happened to the money.
And now DEBKA REPORTS
Our military sources report that under the new arrangements the Israeli and Egyptian armies will work together. Their security teams meet at Nitzana on the Gaza border Sunday, Dec. 30, to establish a combined staff center for eradicating tunnel traffic from Sinai to the Gaza Strip. This was one of the agreements reached by Israeli defense minister Ehud Barak and Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak in their talks last week. A joint team will deal with each active tunnel separately. Most of the estimated 80 and 90 tunnels, some heavily fortified, run through the Philadelphi border strip. Each team will be responsible for blowing up a tunnel and rendering it unusable.
Hope burns eternal.