Egypt considers itself as the leader of the Arab world. It is the most populous Arab country, situated at the center of the Arab world. Fifty years ago the president of Egypt, Gamal Abd-al-Nasser, was the idol of all the Arabs, especially of the Palestinians. How can Egypt collaborate with the “Zionist enemy”, as Egyptians called Israel then, in bringing 1.5 million brother Arabs to their knees?
Until recently, the Egyptian government had been sticking to a solution that exemplifies the 6000-year old Egyptian political acumen. It participated in the blockade but closed its eyes to the hundreds of tunnels dug under the Egyptian-Gaza border, through which the daily supplies for the population were flowing (for exorbitant prices, and with high profits for Egyptian merchants), together with the stream of arms. People also passed through them – from Hamas activists to brides.
This is about to change. Egypt has started building an iron wall – literally – along the full length of the Gaza border, consisting of steel pillars thrust deep into the ground, in order to block all tunnels. That will finally choke the inhabitants.
When the most extreme Zionist, Vladimir Ze’ev Jabotinsky, wrote 80 years ago about erecting an “Iron Wall” against the Palestinians, he did not dream of Arabs doing just that. [continued…]
Hamas on Sunday urged leading Islamic clerics in Egypt to reverse a recent edict supporting the construction of a metal wall cutting off smuggling tunnels under the border with the Gaza Strip.
It emerged late last week that scholars at Cairo’s Al-Azhar University, Sunni Islam’s highest seat of learning, issued a fatwa in favor of the wall.
“It is one of Egypt’s legitimate rights to place a barrier that prevents the harm from the tunnels under Rafah, which are used to smuggle drugs and other [contraband] that threaten Egypt’s stability,” the newspaper Al-Masri Al-Yom quoted the scholars as saying, according to AFP.
“Those who oppose building this wall are violating the commands of Islamic law,” they added, after a meeting attended by Egypt’s top cleric Sheikh Muhammad Said Tantawi, who is a government appointee. [continued…]
A British-led aid convoy bound for the Gaza Strip is on its way to the Egyptian port of Al-Arish after departing Syria by boat, organizers said on Sunday.
The Viva Palestina convoy, led in part by firebrand British MP George Galloway, loaded 210 truckloads of food and medical supplies onto a ferry in the Syrian port of Latakia.
The group, which set out from London nearly a month ago and drove through Turkey and Syria, spent five days stranded in Jordan after Egypt denied it permission to travel to the Red Sea port of Nuweiba, insisting that aid convoys should transit through the port of Al-Arish, on the Mediterranean. [continued…]