About that major Egyptian armed offensive against Sinai terrorists: has it been called off?
|Egyptian weapon systems pour into Sinai|
earlier this month [Image Source]
We and everyone else outside the clique that runs Egypt today don't know for sure what's happening in the new Egypt. But as Egyptian weapons including tanks and helicopters take up position in the formerly demilitarized Sinai over angry Israeli objections [see "Israel voices worry over Egyptian tanks, troops in Sinai"], it might be (based on the report below from Egypt) that Egypt's new Moslem Brotherhood leadership has called off the anti-terrorism sweep, preferring instead to talk with the terrorists. Meanwhile its forces remain there.
Al-Masry Al-Youm (Egypt) carried this Arabic-language report in its Monday, Aug 27, 2012 edition (translated to English here):
The nostalgic and optimistic among our readers might enjoy 'Egypt's tanks are in Sinai for fighting terrorism'. The rest of us might want to note that Egypt's deployment on Israel's southern border in the wake of "the battle to defeat the Sinai jihadists" now suddenly includes main battle tanks (MBTs) and surface-to-air missiles (SAMs), particularly in the northeastern Sinai area, between the coastal city of El Arish and the border with Israel and Gaza [source].
An AP syndicated story from August 15 ["Sinai terror group warns Egyptian army to cease crackdown: Statement on Jihadist website says Israel, not soldiers is groups main focus"] now also provides some interesting after-the-fact reading.
We wrote some weeks ago about worrying signs emanating from Sinai and the Egyptian moves. See "10-Aug-12: Egypt is pouring forces into Sinai but does anyone know for sure what they are actually doing there?" We very much hope the concerns we expressed prove to be misplaced.