Israeli MK: Egypt could attack us again

Thursday, April 26, 2007 |  by Staff Writer

While Israel is focusing its attention on mounting Iranian and Syrian threats, Egypt may be the country most actively setting the stage for a fourth pan-Arab attempt to annihilate the Jewish state, warned a prominent Israeli lawmaker on Wednesday.

In an interview with Arutz 7, Likud Member of Knesset Yuval Steinitz accused Egypt of very cleverly making visible diplomatic efforts to broker a ceasefire between Israel and the Palestinians, while behind the scenes Cairo is doing everything to make sure Palestinian terror groups are able to continue draining the energy and resources of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF).

Steinitz, a former chairman of the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, said that Egypt is facilitating ongoing conflict between Israel and the Palestinian Authority-controlled Gaza Strip by allowing terrorists to smuggle enormous quantities of explosives and other weapons into the area.

The lawmaker has long charged that Egypt could easily put a halt to the arms smuggling at any moment, but prefers not to because Cairo believes the Gaza-based terrorists are succeeding in weakening the IDF.

What's more, noted Steinitz, is that Egypt is actively cooperating with Syria and Iran, raising the possibility that if war breaks out this summer, as some defense officials believe, Israel's southern neighbor and ostensible peace partner may join in the fray.

Three years ago, Tom Lantos, then the ranking Democrat in the US House of Representatives International Relations Committee, tried to curtail American military aid to Egypt over what he called preparations by the latter to make war on Israel.

Lantos noted that Egypt continues to bolster its massive military machine, despite having no serious outside threats to its sovereignty. The congressman also called attention to the fact that "Egyptian military exercises are ominously geared toward an Israeli enemy that doesn't obviously exist."

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