Israel, US at odds over future of Egypt

Monday, August 19, 2013 |  Ryan Jones

Israel is doing its best to stay out of Egypt's current turmoil, but Jerusalem is making no secret of the fact that it would prefer to see the army-led toppling of the Muslim Brotherhood regime succeed. And that has put it at odds with Washington, which seems to be rooting for the Islamists.

In an interview with the New York Times over the weekend, an Israeli official speaking on condition of anonymity said the Jewish state was increasing behind-the-scenes efforts to convince the US and Europe to back what they see as a "military coup."

At this point it is a question of supporting either "army or anarchy," according to the official. "First, save what you can, and then deal with democracy and freedom and so on."

Israel is also said to be closely coordinating with Egyptian Chief of Staff Gen. Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi, and this, according to an unnamed Western diplomat, is "undercutting" American efforts in Egypt.

Last week, an Egyptian Christian leader told Israel Today that local Christians cannot figure out why America is trying to put them back under an oppressive, violent Islamist regime.

Meanwhile, Egyptian media reported on Saturday that the civilian component of the latest uprising that toppled President Mohammed Morsi is now taking aim at Egypt's peace treaty with Israel.

The "Tamaroud" ("Rebels") are said to be currently circulating a petition calling for the cancellation of the Camp David Accords. The Tamaroud managed to get well over 15 million signatures demanding Morsi's resignation.

The group reportedly sees the Israel-Egypt peace treaty as another example of American meddling in Egyptian affairs.

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