Egypt is one of the most anti-American countries in the world. In Egypt, at a moment's notice, America can be blamed for this or that -- for the corruption of Mubarak's ruling elite, for those who hated Mubarak, for the menace of the Muslim Brotherhood, for those who fear the Muslim Brotherhood, for the supposed foreign-backed "liberals" who-- never quite as "liberal" or as wonderful as their Western backers appear to think -- are disliked by both Egypt's military men and by the Muslim Brotherhood.
Egypt, however, has been happy to be given, and taken as its due, vast amounts of American aid. Apparently someone had the bright idea -- was it Carter? Brzezinski? the people who think like Carter and Brzezinski? -- that for agreeing so generously to receive, from Israel, the entire Sinai (in three tranches), together with $16 billion dollars (in 1979 dollars) worth of improvements -- oilfields, roads, airfields, Sharm el-Sheikh itself, Egypt deserved an extra reward on top of that. Even though it was Israel that was giving up a vast territory, that it had won and kept in two wars -- the Six-Day War and the Yom Kippur War -- thrust upon it mainly by Egypt (though with Syria and, in the first instance, Jordan, also leaping in), a territory as important to it as, say, the Pacific Ocean is to the United States in keeping a potentially aggressive China at a safe distance -- and Egypt that was getting back something it had no right to expect, that is territory lost not once but twice in war (the Suez Campaign, the Six-Day War), and getting it back for the mere promise that it, Egypt, would encourage friendly relations between Egypt and Israel, between Egyptians and Israelis, through such modest measures -- about which the Israelis were so sweetly hopeful -- as book fairs and film festivals, and tourism, which by degrees, the Israelis thought, Egyptians could begin to see the Israelis not as they had been demonized in Egyptian life, in the Egyptian press and radio and television, but as they were, and that, by degrees, some kind of human understanding could lessen Egypt's implacable enmity. But it was not to be. Egypt did nothing to fulfill its solemn commitments under the Camp David Accords, and the American government, under successive administrations, never even tried to get Egypt to respect those commitments, preferring to note that "Egypt had made peace" and was "keeping the peace" -- but that was not a result of the treaty. Egypt "kept its peace" with Israel for the same reason that Syria, or Iraq, or Saudi Arabia, or Jordan did -- that is, fear of losing another war to Israel, and having Israel inflict such damage as would have made going to war unwise. And Egypt has much more of a reason than Saudi Arabia, or Iraq, to avoid such an outcome, for the Egyptian government lost the entire Sinai (which became "Egyptian" only in 1922, after the end of the Ottoman Empire, though some Westerners apparently are wrongly under the impression it was always part of Egypt -- but see the Diary of Col. Richard Meinertzhagen, with his map of the Sinai area, for more) not once but twice, and the Egyptians must fear that if they ever lose it again to Israel, Israel this time will never give it up, and no one will be able to make it. If Once Burned, Twice Shy, imagine the final word in "Twice Burned, Thrice....).
American aid to Egypt should never have started. The American government, against the wishes of its citizens, has poured $70 billion into Egypt, which is not and never has been an "ally" as so many unthinkingly call it. That money has provided the sums on which the Egyptian ruling class, and especially its corrupt military, have fed, and which has bred resentment, and not affection for, but hostility towards, the United States, precisely for providing the wherewithal for the ruling class to grow rich (by Egyptian standards), and to lead lives on a completely different plane from that of other Egyptians.
And now there is an opportunity -- presented by Egypt itself -- to end that aid.
That aid should be seen as connected to the Camp David Accords, but not in the way everyone seems to think. The Camp David Accords were scrupulously observed by one side only -- the Israeli side. Israel gave up something -- the vast Sinai that meant so much to it as a military buffer zone. It had no duty to return the Sinai. By all the rules of warfare, and of postwar settlements, that have been reached in the civilizied West over the past two hundred years, Israel was perfectly entitled to hold onto the Sinai (see, for example, what happened to the Austrian Sudtirol, which Italy got to keep after World War I, and which is now the Alto Adige, despite being, when handed over, 98% ethnic Austrian, that is part of Deutschtum).
Because Egypt did not fulfill its solemn commitments to encourage friendly relations between Egyptians and Israelis, because it banned Israelis from taking part in film festivals and book fairs, because it openly discouraged Egyptians from visiting Israel as tourists, because Mubarak failed to visit Israel as he was obligated to in order to show that friendly relations indeed existed (coming only once, to Rabin's funeral), because the Egyptian government did nothing to stop, and everything to allow, the most horrifying and ancient of antisemitic canards -- both those whose source is Islam and those whose source is in the Nazis or other European antisemites of a still-older kind -- to be spread in the Egyptian press, and on the radio, and on television, because the official Egyptian channel even showed a television series based on the Protocols of the Elders of Zion, it is long past time that the American government should stop rewarding Egypt for adhering to a treaty it has not, properly speaking, adhered to.
If the American public knew how Egypt had pocketed this money, and yet failed to observe the treaty in the particulars I have noted, if they knew, furthermore, just how anti-American the Egyptian public is, they would be enraged. And if there were those who had geopolitical sense, based on an understanding of the need to weaken the threat posed, individuallly and collectively, by Muslim states, states that can be considered part of the Camp of Islam, rather than to build up their military, somewhere in the corridors of power, the colossal waste -- which includes not only the American buildup, and training, and equipping, half-a-million Muslims in Iraq, and 300,00 Muslims in Afghanistan, but also in supplying military aid to Yemen (with more promised), and also this aid to Egypt that the Egyptians take as their due, for to them it is a kind of Jizyah, which the Muslims are owed, and if the American Infidels dare to talk about cutting it -- why, they simply can't be allowed even to think in such terms. Even the Muslim Brotherhood, for god's sake, just last week announced that it thought Egypt had a right to that American aid, and the Amerians had better not even think of cutting it.
As for "peace" between Egypt and Israel, that is kept not through giving Egypt tens of billions of dollars in military aid, which only strengthens its military, but in improving, constantly, Israel's military superiorirty. One way to do that is to give aid to Israel. And another way to do that, and one which costs nothing, and which will be a clear sign not only to Egypt but to other Muslim states, that the Jizyah days are over, is to cut that aid to Egypt. That will make the task of Israeli defense planners easier. They will have less to worry about, on their southern front, if the Egyptian mlitary budget is cut by one-third or more.
This is the perfect time to cut all aid to Egypt. It will put Egypt, put all the Arabs and Muslims on notice, that their attitude, their expectation that they can continue to get American -- or for that matter European -- aid, is wrong. It's over. Two trilliion dollars has been squandered in Iraq, and it is only now, that some people are finally understanding the full dimensions of that hideous waste. One trilliion dollars has been squanderred in hideous and ungrateful and primitve Afghanistan. And the same goes for all the other sums squandered, to make life better for Muslims whose wretchedness -- economic, political, social, intellectual, and moral -- is a result of Islam itself, and can only be ameliorated to the extent that Islam's hold on the minds of its adherents is weakened. And that cannot be done if Western aid, Infidel aid, is always available to rescue Muslims from the effects of Islam.
Now, while the perfect opportunity has been presented by the extraordinary behavior of the Egyptians themselves, in putting Americans and NGOs on trial, on trumped-up charges, because those in power in Egypt will pocket Infidel billiions, but won't ever change their spots, and certainly have no intention of otherwise listening to Infidels, The generosity we have shown is a diseased generosity. If you want to help Muslims, help to force them to confront the real source of their many miseries. And if you want to keep the peace between Egypt and Israel, the least intelligent way to do it is to supply the Egyptian military with billions of dollars.