NEW YORK- A senior Israeli official has said that Egypt’s policy is to promote Palestinian Arab terrorism against Israel, and the Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) is urging the Bush administration to suspend U.S. aid to Egypt until the Egyptians change their policy.
Knesset Member Yuval Steinitz, who is chairman of the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, told a meeting of American Jewish leaders in New York City on September 23, 2004 that “Egypt’s real policy is to encourage and promote Palestinian Arab terrorism against Israel.” He said that “five thousand kalashnikov rifles and three hundred fifty anti-aircraft missiles have been smuggled from Egypt into Gaza through underground tunnels, which could only be done with very large numbers of trucks, something Egypt had to know about. Clearly the Egyptians know what is happening and are allowing it as a matter of policy.”
ZOA National President Morton A. Klein said: “It is surprising and disappointing that the United States, which is waging such a critical and historic war against international Islamic terrorism, is not taking action against Egypt’s assistance to terrorists. The United States gives Egypt $2.2-billion each year — it has plenty of leverage to make the Egyptians stop permitting and facilitating the flood of terrorist weapons going to Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and the Palestinian Authority in Gaza. These weapons are being used to murder innocent Israeli men, women, and children.”
The ZOA notes that Israeli Army Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen.Moshe Ya’alon said (Jerusalem Post, Aug. 25, 2004) that Egypt is “facilitating arms smuggling into the Gaza Strip allowing the Palestinians to continue smuggling arms from Sinai into Gaza despite Israeli protests.” He said “Egypt knew exactly which arms were being smuggled, and could halt the smuggling of rocket- propelled grenades into Gaza.” Israeli cabinet minister Natan Sharansky said on the Anne Coulter Radio Show on May 19, 2004, that “90% of the weapons in Gaza came through the tunnels from Egypt.”