Israel wishes liberals in the
next Egyptian elections 'good luck'
By Khalid Amayreh
in Occupied Jerusalem
PIC, June 3, 2011
Officially, Israeli officials say they donít want to appear
as interfering in the next Egyptian elections, slated to take place in
However, privately, these officials make no secret of
their "burning wish" to see the anti-Islamic forces, e.g. the liberals
and remnants of the previous regime's supporter's triumph over the
Muslim Brotherhood, widely thought to be the most organized political
group on the Egyptian arena.
According to reliable sources in
Washington and Cairo, Israeli Prime Minister Benyamin Netanyahu last
month privately asked President Obama to press the Egyptian government
to "restrict the chances of the fundamentalists reaching power or
achieving real influence."
Netanyahu reportedly pressed the Obama
administration to threaten economic and other sanctions against Egypt if
the next Egyptian government displayed more anti-Israeli attitudes,
including more support for the Palestinians.
rejected the Israeli request, arguing that the Egyptians were in no mood
to tolerate foreign interference in their internal affairs, adding that
any such interference would be taken advantage of by the Islamists to
make even more gains.
However, it is unlikely that this will
spell the end of Israeli attempts and efforts to influence the
post-Mubarak political scene in the largest and most important Arab
Israel is very likely to further press Congress, often
described as an Israeli-occupied territory because of overwhelming
Jewish-Zionist influence over the bicameral American legislature, to
exert every possible pressure on the evolving Egyptian regime to observe
Meanwhile, Israeli and Zionist circles
continued to incite against anything Islamic in Egypt, with a clear
monomaniac fixation on the Muslim Brothers.
On 31 May, the
right-wing Israeli newspaper, the Jerusalem Post, published an article
accusing the Muslim Brothers of using mosques as party branches. The
article quoted former Mossad Chief Shabtai Shavit as saying that "every
mosque is a party branch headquarters. Every cleric at the mosque is the
party branch chairman. A contribution to the mosque is a contribution to
Shabtai, who recently chaired a conference at Tel
Aviv University organized by a right-wing think-tank, the Workshop for
Science, Technology and Security, claimed that the Muslim Brothers were
seeking to create a Sharia'-based state.
Like other Jewish
supremacists, who are indoctrinated in Jewish exceptionalism and
superiority, Shabtai ignored the fact that Jewish religious parties, who
exude a clear-cut fascist discourse, are granted full freedom to
participate and influence the political process in Israel without any
Israeli intellectual or commentator batting an eyelash.
the religious mentor of one major coalition partner in the current
Israeli government was quoted recently as telling a Sabbath-eve
synagogue gathering in West Jerusalem that non-Jews were very much like
donkeys and other beasts of burden, which the Almighty created solely to
serve the chosen people.
Statements resembling in letter and
spirit the most venomous Nazi propaganda are routinely made by Israeli
religious and political leaders. However, such statements don't raise
many eyebrows in a society where brash racism and fascism have become
the norm rather than the exception.
One Israeli cabinet minister
remarked a few months ago that "we have already become a fascist state."
Another speaker at the conference was Haim Asa who recognized that
the Arab-Muslim youths were undergoing a real transformation and going
through an empowerment process.
"They stand in Tahrir square and
in Deraa, they are injured and killed, and they continue to stand. This
is an unstoppable process. I don't know what will come next, but it
seems the old style of dictators will be no more.
Asa warned that
what he called the "new phenomenon of mobs" which he described as "a
civil atomic bomb" would pose a greater danger to Israel than an Iranian
There is no doubt that the Muslim brothers and
other anti-Israeli forces in Egypt stand to gain in terms of popularity
from the manifestly-brazen anti-Ikhwan Israeli propaganda. After all,
one of the main reasons the repressive Mubarak regime was kept in power
by the United States all these years was to placate Israel and protect
Anti-Israeli forces, especially the Muslim
Brothers, were systematically persecuted by the former regime. Hundreds
of Muslim Brothers, including the group's leading political activists,
spent prolonged periods of time in the regime's slimy prisons and
Besides, there is no doubt that any words of praise
coming from Israel in favor of any political group in Egypt would
seriously harm the image of that group to say the least given the
immense dislike most Egyptians harbor for Israel.
journalist told this writer that any perceived backing or support by
Israel of an Egyptian candidate would be sufficient to kill that
candidate's chances for election or even for public respect.
association with Israel would mean an instantaneous public relations
disaster. If you want to destroy a political candidate or a political
party, try to link it to Israel.
"Israel is still widely
perceived as the enemy. Israel is likely to remain the Egyptian people's
main enemy as long the conflict with the Palestinians remains
I asked my interlocutor if he thought the next
elections in September could produce a government that is significantly
more anti-Israel than the current government.
His answer was
clear. "Governments anywhere have their own calculations. But, we the
peopl, have our own convictions as well. And if the next government in
Egypt is to be faithful to democracy and answerable to the masses, it
will have to take the people's convictions vis-ŗ-vis Israel into
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