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August 21 2013

Egypt in the rearview mirror - latimes.com

Egypt in the rearview mirror - latimes.com
http://www.latimes.com/opinion/commentary/la-oe-bacevich-egypt-military-policy-20130820,0,4550721.story

Pour #David_Bacevich, c’est à partir des #accords_de_Camp_David_de_1978 que les #Etats-Unis sont devenus particulièrement agressifs au #Moyen-orient

When it comes to Egypt, the U.S. has little leverage and therefore no real options. That’s according to the prevailing wisdom, at least.

Yet this analysis — endlessly reiterated in mainstream commentary — is misleading. The absence of leverage does not preclude options. It certainly does not require the Obama administration to debase itself by pretending that the military overthrow of a freely elected government is not a coup or by accepting the Egyptian army’s slaughter of civilians with no more than a tsk-tsk. The administration may choose to do these things, but not because circumstances oblige it to do so.

Identifying our options in Egypt requires examining U.S. policy in a broader context, since the events unfolding in that country are emblematic of a much larger failure.

It may help to recall how the United States forged its perverse relationship with the Egyptian army in the first place. That relationship dates from the 1978 Camp David accords brokered by President Jimmy Carter. (...)

From that day to the present, the United States has annually funneled billions of taxpayer dollars to Egypt and Israel. Rather than furthering the cause of mutual understanding — funding education programs or cultural exchanges, for example — most of that money has gone to the purchase of advanced weaponry.

What are we to make of this arrangement? Writing in the New York Times, Thom Shanker and Eric Schmitt recently noted that “in the four decades before Camp David, Israel and Egypt fought several major wars; in the nearly four decades since, none.”

True enough, and a welcome development. Yet no less true, if much less welcome, is this: In the four decades before Camp David, the U.S. had managed to steer clear of war in the Middle East; in the nearly four decades since, U.S. involvement in hostilities throughout the region has become routine, with little to show as a result.

What becomes clear in retrospect is that Camp David mattered less as a milestone on the road to peace than as a departure point signaling a radical transformation of U.S. policy. Before Camp David, in the Pentagon’s eyes, the region had qualified as an afterthought. After Camp David — and especially as the Cold War wound down — it became the center of attention.

(...)

August 15 2013

Prévenez Fabius : lui et ses copains européens n'intéressent plus personne au Moyen-Orient. EU…

Prévenez Fabius : lui et ses copains européens n’intéressent plus personne au Moyen-Orient.

EU diplomat : Egyptian army rejected peace plan
http://euobserver.com/foreign/121127

The EU’s special envoy to the Middle East, Bernardino Leon, has said the Egyptian army rejected a peace deal with the Muslim Brotherhood a few hours before the killing in Cairo began.

He told Reuters that he and US diplomat William Burns in recent days brokered an agreement between the military and the brothers on how to end their month-long sit-ins in two city squares.

“We had a political plan that was on the table, that had been accepted by the other side [the brotherhood] … They [the army] could have taken this option. So all that has happened today was unnecessary,” he said.

He noted that he made a final appeal on the peace plan to military chiefs “hours” before they ordered the assault, at 7am local time on Wednesday (14 August), using armoured bulldozers and live ammunition against people in tent camps.

July 12 2013

Egypt's 1952 revolution and military rule, a history in photos

Egypt’s 1952 revolution and military rule, a history in photos
http://blogs.denverpost.com/captured/2013/07/09/egypt-1952-revolution-free-officers-movement-military-rule/6183

On July 23, 1952 a group of Egyptian army officers, calling themselves the “Free Officers Movement” engineered a coup d’etat and forced King Farouk to abdicate the throne and leave the country. After years of building tension between Egypt and Britain over control of the Suez Canal and the Sudan, the military power grab abolished the monarchy and began to build a new sense of Egyptian nationalism. Revolution Day is commemorated every year on July 23.

The Egyptian Republic was declared on June 18, 1953, but military leaders have kept a firm grasp on power ever since.

http://denverpost.slideshowpro.com/albums/001/496/album-402292/cache/egypt-revolution-history-070913-026.sJPG_950_2000_0_75_0_50_50.JPG

CAIRO, EGYPT - 1952: Meeting of the Egyptian “Free Officers” in Cairo in 1952. The Free Officers forced King Faruq 23 July 1952 to leave the throne and replaced him by his son King Fouad. Mohammed Nagib (2R) Gamal Abdel Nasser (3R) Anwar al-Sadat (From 4L). Others are unidentified. (Photo by AFP/Getty Images)
#photographie #égypte

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