Thursday, December 29, 2016

Putin on the Nile

Probably the strangest aspect of the Israeli government and US conservative media counteroffensive against John Kerry's speech yesterday is its reliance on the Egyptian Deep State. This trend actually well precedes the UN vote, with Trump having played up his relationship with Egyptian President Abdelfattah al-Sisi for a while, using it to obtain an ostensible postponement of the UN vote. Then there's the apparent Bibi endorsement of the first "leak" of the alleged "evidence" the US had orchestrated the UN vote -- the leak being to an Egyptian newspaper and thus likely sourced from Egyptian security services.

You'd think the one things that conservatives might have learned from years of frustration in the Middle East is the risk of getting pulled into the machinations of authoritarian regimes, but that's where they are now with al-Sisi. Analysts who have spent a lot more time than they have looking at al-Sisi's incentives see an attempt to place Mohammad Dahlan in prime position as the next leader of Fatah (and thus de facto President of Palestine). Good luck to anyone trying to keep their hands clean in that rivalry. 

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