Israel Radio reports on Sunday morning that the United States has warned Egypt that its economic assistance will be in jeopardy if it does not return its ambassador to Israel. Egypt withdrew its ambassador early on Saturday in response to the alleged killing of five members of the Egyptian security forces in the aftermath of Thursday's terror attack along the Egyptian border. Defense Minister Ehud Barak has apologized for the incident. The Egyptians say that's 'not enough.'
The Egyptian cabinet on Saturday characterized as insufficient Defense Minister Ehud Barak's statement of regret for the deaths of Egyptian security officers who were apparently shot by IDF troops as they returned fire at the terrorists who carried out Thursday's attacks near Eilat. The Israeli decision to work with Egypt to investigate the killings is "positive in appearance but does not fit with the weight of the incident and the state of Egyptians' outrage from the Israeli actions," Egypt's state news agency MENA quoted a cabinet statement as saying. "Egypt confirms it is keen on the peace with Israel, Tel Aviv also will have to share its responsibilities in protecting that peace," MENA said. The statement said the government had asked for a deadline for the joint investigation into the incident to conclude its work, adding that crisis meetings would continue until the results are released. Barak’s statement of regret was aimed at reducing tension between Jerusalem and Cairo, which peaked early Saturday morning with reports that Egypt was recalling its ambassador from Tel Aviv due to the killing of the security officers. Defense officials said they hoped the expression of regret would succeed in annulling Cairo’s earlier decision. ... According to an initial IDF probe, the security officers were apparently killed when IDF soldiers opened fire in the direction of terrorists who had first shot at them from within Egypt. The terrorists had crossed into Israel and carried out their attacks directly adjacent to an Egyptian military outpost. On Saturday morning, Egypt announced it was withdrawing its ambassador from Israel, citing the shooting of the security personnel as a breach of its 1979 peace treaty. Israel said it hoped that after Barak’s comments, the Egyptian envoy, who had not yet left, would remain in Tel Aviv.
There was a wild demonstration - which looks like a lot more than the 1,000 people Israel Radio said it was - outside the Israeli embassy in Cairo on Saturday night. The demonstrators were calling for the Israeli ambassador to be expelled. The Egyptian government has promised that it will continue to protect the embassy and its staff, but as you will see in this video, someone managed to get upstairs and remove the Israeli flag from the embassy. Israel Radio reports that it was replaced by an Egyptian one, but you won't see that in this video. Let's go to the videotape. There was mention on the radio of Israel allowing more Egyptian troops into Sinai than are allowed under the treaty. It's not clear to me whether that refers to the troops currently there (discussed in several earlier posts) or whether we are allowing even more troops in - which is what the Egyptians apparently want.
Israel needs to stop apologizing. It isn't like these apologies are taken seriously anyway. As for the United States, it sure would be nice to save billions of dollars. The U.S.A gives as much aid to the Arabs as to Israel which is a Democratic ally. Egypt is the top recipient of this AID.