Yesterday, Maggie’s Notebook ran an excellent piece about the renewal of peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians recently announced by the Obama administration. When I commented on Maggie’s post, I made the mistake of drawing on my memory of something I had read. (I should know better than to trust my memory.) I told her I had read recently something I called a “rumor” about a secret deal Obama had made with the new military regime of Egypt. The deal was that the US would recognize the regime as the legitimate government of Egypt if they would agree to give-up a part of the Sinai region, which would be annexed to the Gaza strip.
Later, I was reviewing the articles I had bookmarked as potential sources for today’s post, when I came across the source of what I had called a rumor (I remembered that when I had first read it that I classified it in my mind as most likely being a conspiracy theory.) and realized I had screwed it up totally. It was neither a rumor or a conspiracy theory. It was reported news. Whether it is true or not only time will or maybe not. Further more, the supposed deal was not with the current military regime, but had been made earlier with the Morsi government and the Muslim Brotherhood. So, allow me to try to get the story straight this time.
It turns out that my original source for this story was a post at the MB50’s Blog. I suppose I treated the story as a “rumor” or as a “conspiracy theory” because the author of the post did not provide a link to the source. I am a stickler about linking. So, after realizing how badly I had screwed up in my comment at Maggie’s Notebook, I decided to do a search to see if I could find the source. It was easy. The story originated with EgyptBailyNews,com. The article is short so I will reproduce it here:
SHOCKER: Secret $8 billion deal between Obama and the Muslim Brotherhood
Below is a summary of the video in Arabic that reveals an agreement made between Barack Obama and Mohamed Morsi’s Muslim Brotherhood, to give 40% of Sinai to Hamas in exchange for $8 billion has already been paid to Morsi by Obama.
No wonder Obama is asking the Egyptian Army to release Morsi: Obama has asked for the release mohamed-morsi
• SECRET agreement between the Obama administration and the Muslim Brotherhood (not the Egyptian government) to give 40% of the Sinai and the annexation of that part of Egyptian territory in Gaza. The objective is to facilitate the conclusion of a comprehensive peace agreement between Israel and the Palestinians
• This agreement was signed by Khairat el Shater (number 2 of the Brotherhood) by Morsi and the Supreme Guide of the Mulsim Brotherhood.
• A sum of U.S. $ 8 billion was paid in exchange for the land.
• An investigation is ongoing Morsi and El Shater. An arrest warrant was filed against the Guide to MB and other members of his office.
• MB signatories to the agreement are liable to the death penalty for treason.
• The Obama administration would try to reach an agreement with El Sissi (Defense Minister): recognition of the legitimacy of the “coup” in exchange for his silence about the secret agreement. But El Sissi would be more interested in the conviction of MB and discredit their organization which is Egypt’s main source of danger.
• The Republican members of Congress are seriously looking into the case. If proven, the process of Obama impeachment could be triggered.
The first thing to understand is that this story was leaked by Egypt’s new military regime, So, its veracity is questionable. I could find no other source claiming the Republicans in Congress were looking into this. So don’t get excited about impeachment proceedings. With that disclaimer, for the sake of today’s discussion, let’s assume the story is true. And, if the story is true, I have a number thoughts on the subject:
- That the deal was done in secret is not an issue in my opinion. Delicate peace negotiations must be carried out in secret.
- $8 billion? If this deal actually resulted in peace for Israel with its Palestinian neighbors, $8 billion is a bargain, in my opinion.
- If this story is true, then it is obvious tha Hamas found the idea acceptable and that, in itself, is encouraging.
- 40% of the Sinai? That’s a lot of land. (See this map.) That would make the state of Palestine several times bigger than Israel.
- Why would Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood agree to such a deal?
- Now that the Morsi government has been overthrown and since Obama has already announced the peace talks are to be renewed, will Obama make a similar deal with the Military regime of Egypt? Why would they agree to it and how much more would their cooperation cost the US?
- As much as all of us would like to see peace between Israel and the Palestinians, this land deal is not going to achieve peace by itself, is it? There would still be those not minor issues like Hamas agreeing that Israel has the right to exist, the issue of the 1967 borders, which is a non-starter for Israel; and rightly so, and there is the issue of Jerusalem.
Well, that’s what I’m thinking. What are your thoughts?