Jerusalem (CNSNews.com) Israel is upset over Egyptian military exercises in which the simulated enemy is Israel, and some are calling on the U.S. to reconsider its aid to Egypt because of it.
The Egyptian navy reportedly carried out the largest exercise in its history last week. Dubbed Victory 41, the military maneuvers marked the Egyptian sinking of the Israeli Naval vessel Eilat 41 years ago, in which 47 Israeli sailors were killed and 91 wounded.
According to the daily Haaretz, Oct. 20 was set aside as a holiday marking the sinking of the Israeli vessel for the Egyptian naval forces.
The paper also quoted the Egyptian Navy commander in chief Vice Admiral Mohad Mamish in an interview with the Arabic newspaper Al Ahram, saying that the Egyptian Naval vessels were outfitted with advanced missiles and the Navy had supply contracts with
Unfortunately now for more than 10 years most of the big [Egyptian] exercises are simulating war against
The first time was in 1996 when they imitated a war against a little country that is bordering
Looking on the map, its clear who they were simulating the war against, he said.
The only new thing this time is that it has been leaked to the press, said Steinitz.
On Wednesday, Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert telephoned Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak to apologize for comments made by a right-wing Knesset member, who noted that Mubarak has never come on a state visit to
But there are signs of other strains in relations.
The Hebrew daily Maariv reported on Tuesday that on a recent trip to Egypt, the director of the military/political and policy bureau of Israels Ministry of Defense, told Egyptian Intelligence chief Omar Suleiman and Defense Minister Hussein Tantawi that Israel was concerned about Egypt carrying out of Egyptian army exercises “that are directed against an Israeli threat and that relate to it [Israel] as an enemy.
(A translation was provided by the Independent Media Review and Analysis.)
According to the paper, Tantawi said relations between the armies could improve in the future in tandem with progress in regional peace. He also said that security challenges obligate
Steinitz said the military exercises, combined with massive Egyptian force building plus indoctrination of the military against
He also said that despite the peace agreement between the two countries,
Earlier this year, the Anti-Defamation League told the House Foreign Affairs Committee that its analysts had found the Egyptian press to be a leading propagator of anti-Semitic images for many years and that that trend was now spreading to other newspapers in the region.
Since signing a peace treaty with
bilateral relations, continuing military cooperation, and sustaining the March 1979
Egyptian-Israeli peace treaty, according to a Congressional Research Service report to Congress in August 2008.
The U.S. Embassy here had no comment on the military exercises.
But the Zionist Organization of America criticized the Egyptian celebration of its past attacks on
In an era of peace that was meant to be ushered in by the 1979 Camp David peace treaty,
This is not a matter of a country simply honoring its war dead. It is matter of maintaining the hostility to
The ZOA noted that the Egyptian celebrations were in the wider context of Egyptian political, cultural and media hostility toward
Earlier this year, Egyptian Culture Minister Farouk Hosni said he would burn Israeli books himself if found in Egyptian libraries. In 2006, a poll found that 92 percent of Egyptians regarded