A leading analyst at Israel's Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies says Western leaders are naive if they believe the Muslim Brotherhood has abandoned its quest to destroy Israel merely because of its leadership role in Egypt.
Dr. Liad Porat agreed with the assessment of many Western and Israeli leaders that Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood overlords either won't be able to or won't desire to start a direct military conflict with Israel in the coming 10 years.
"The Brotherhood recognizes Israel’s military and technological advantage and doesn’t want to start a war," wrote Porat.
But that doesn't mean the Brotherhood won't encourage and facilitate hostile activity directed at Israel.
"The possibility of a security threat emanating from Egypt in the near future cannot be dismissed," noted Porat, especially considering the Brotherhood's active efforts to demonize Israel in the eyes of average Egyptians.
Since its recent rise to power, the Muslim Brotherhood "has influenced the Egyptian street to think that Israel is no longer a stabilizing factor in the region," Porat explained. "The Brotherhood has convinced the Egyptian public that a treaty with Israel harms Egyptian national security and threatens internal Egyptian stability."
Just last month, as world leaders were praising Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi for his role in brokering a truce between Israel and Gaza-based terrorists, Morsi's boss and the Muslim Brotherhood's spiritual leader, Mohammed Badie, was reiterating that it was "obligatory" for all Muslims to wage jihad against the Jewish state.
And that brings us to Porat's point, which is that the West has an opportunity to nip this threat in the bud years before it has the chance to blossom into violent conflict.
"America has an interest to financially assist Egypt as an actor that is still considered moderate in the Middle East," concluded Porat. However, "it should look more closely at the Brotherhood’s true intentions before providing future aid."
Failure to do so is almost certain to bring about the realization of fears that Egypt is transforming into a Sunni version of Iran's Islamic Republic.
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