FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

Immutable Egypt

by NICOLA NASSER

Gaza will remain a matter of national security for Egypt. And regardless of who is in charge in Gaza, Egypt will also remain a strategic asset for Gaza, a lifeline for its people, and a mainstay of its peace and stability.

These are the irreversible facts of the ties between Egypt and Gaza. In other words, when Egypt sneezes, Gaza catches a cold.
Now some people are trying to drive a wedge between Gaza and Egypt, but they will fail. Even at the lowest point of relations between Gaza and the ousted regime of Hosni Mubarak, few challenged the fact that Gaza and Egypt care for one another.
Today, we hear analysts in the West Bank and Israel predicting the end of Hamas rule in Gaza, just because the Muslim Brotherhood was ousted from power in Egypt.
To those, I wish to say that Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood never hid their ties, were proud of their connections, and made no secret of their cooperation. But the political adversaries of both Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood of Egypt would have us believe that anything that befalls the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt will befall Hamas in Gaza, which is a massive exaggeration.
It is true that the recent events in Egypt have put an end to the high hopes Hamas had of strategic cooperation between Gaza and Egypt. It is also true that the image of Hamas as a resistance movement has been shaken. But let’s not believe everything the political adversaries of Hamas say. Let’s not believe their lies, for their only aim is to undermine the Palestinian resistance.
It has to be said, however, that Hamas was optimistic about the Arab Spring and was pleased to see like-minded governments take over in some Arab countries. It is also true that Hamas, perhaps too hastily, assumed that an alliance with Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood and its backers in Qatar would make up for the loss of its allies in Syria and Iran. Still, we must not forget that Hamas is a resistance movement first and foremost. Its connections with the Muslim Brotherhood of Egypt don’t change this fact.
Hemmed in by the Israelis, Hamas was always hoping for Egypt to come to its rescue. But even during Mohamed Morsi’s presidency, relations between Egypt and Hamas were not free from tensions and differences. Hamas also had problems with Qatar’s view of the Arab peace plan.
Now the adversaries of Hamas would have us think that just as Egyptians brought down the Muslim Brotherhood, the Palestinians in Gaza should expel Hamas from government. It is quite telling that Mahmoud Abbas was one of the first Arab presidents to congratulate the Egyptian army on appointing Adli Mansour as president.
Now Hamas stands accused of interfering in Egypt’s domestic affairs. This accusation was made when Morsi was in power and after he was removed from power. Hamas denied time and again that it interfered in Egypt or in any other Arab countries. And the Palestinian ambassador to Cairo, Barakat Al-Farra, said that no such accusation was ever made by Egyptian officials.
Those who make such allegations not only harm the Palestinians, but also may cause lasting damage to ties between Gaza and Egypt.
I recently heard someone claiming that the Muslim Brotherhood’s fall from grace in Egypt will weaken Hamas to the point that makes it more amenable to Palestinian reconciliation. This is nonsense. For one thing, the Palestinian schism predates the Muslim Brotherhood’s accession to power in Egypt, and it has nothing to do with Hamas-Muslim Brotherhood ties. In fact, the real reason for the delay in reconciliation is that Mahmoud Abbas is still hoping that US Secretary of State John Kerry will succeed in restarting peace talks with Israel.
Also, the Palestinian presidency continues to oppose any acts of resistance in which Hamas and other Palestinian factions living in Gaza choose to engage.
Implicating the Palestinians in Egypt’s currently divisive scene is neither to the benefit of Palestinians nor Egyptians. But it is good news for Israel.

Nicola Nasser is a veteran Arab journalist based in Bir Zeit, West Bank of the Israeli-occupied Palestinian territories.

More articles by:

Nicola Nasser is a veteran Arab journalist based in Birzeit, West Bank of the Israeli-occupied Palestinian territories (nassernicola@ymail.com).     

CounterPunch Magazine

minimag-edit

bernie-the-sandernistas-cover-344x550

zen economics

Weekend Edition
June 23, 2017
Friday - Sunday
Jeffrey St. Clair
Democrats in the Dead Zone
Gary Leupp
Trump, Qatar and the Danger of Total Confusion
Andrew Levine
The “Democracies” We Deserve
Jeffrey St. Clair - Joshua Frank
The FBI’s “Operation Backfire” and the Case of Briana Waters
Rob Urie
Cannibal Corpse
Joseph G. Ramsey
Savage Calculations: On the Exoneration of Philando Castile’s Killer
John Wight
Trump’s Attack on Cuba
Dave Lindorff
We Need a Mass Movement to Demand Radical Progressive Change
Brian Cloughley
Moving Closer to Doom
David Rosen
The Sex Offender: the 21st Century Witch
John Feffer
All Signs Point to Trump’s Coming War With Iran
Jennifer L. Lieberman
What’s Really New About the Gig Economy?
Pete Dolack
Analyzing the Failures of Syriza
Vijay Prashad
The Russian Nexus
Mike Whitney
Putin Tries to Avoid a Wider War With the US
Gregory Barrett
“Realpolitik” in Berlin: Merkel Fawns Over Kissinger
Louis Yako
The Road to Understanding Syria Goes Through Iraq
Graham Peebles
Grenfell Tower: A Disaster Waiting to Happen
Ezra Rosser
The Poverty State of Mind and the State’s Obligations to the Poor
Ron Jacobs
Andrew Jackson and the American Psyche
Pepe Escobar
Fear and Loathing on the Afghan Silk Road
Andre Vltchek
Why I Reject Western Courts and Justice
Lawrence Davidson
On Hidden Cultural Corruptors
Christopher Brauchli
The Routinization of Mass Shootings in America
Missy Comley Beattie
The Poor Need Not Apply
Martin Billheimer
White Man’s Country and the Iron Room
Joseph Natoli
What to Wonder Now
Tom Clifford
Hong Kong: the Chinese Meant Business
Thomas Knapp
The Castile Doctrine: Cops Without Consequences
Nyla Ali Khan
Borders Versus Memory
Binoy Kampmark
Death on the Road: Memory in Tim Winton’s Shrine
Tony McKenna
The Oily Politics of Unity: Owen Smith as Northern Ireland Shadow Secretary
Nizar Visram
If North Korea Didn’t Exist US Would Create It
John Carroll Md
At St. Catherine’s Hospital, Cite Soleil, Haiti
Kenneth Surin
Brief Impressions of the Singaporean Conjucture
Paul C. Bermanzohn
Trump: the Birth of the Hero
Jill Richardson
Trump on Cuba: If Obama Did It, It’s Bad
Olivia Alperstein
Our President’s Word Wars
REZA FIYOUZAT
Useless Idiots or Useful Collaborators?
Clark T. Scott
Parallel in Significance
Louis Proyect
Hitler and the Lone Wolf Assassin
Julian Vigo
Theresa May Can’t Win for Losing
Richard Klin
Prog Rock: Pomp and Circumstance
Charles R. Larson
Review: Malin Persson Giolito’s “Quicksand”
David Yearsley
RIP: Pomp and Circumstance
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail