Egypt's Anti-Hamas Stance Is unethical, illogical And Scandalous

30 January 2015

By Khalid Amayreh

The recent scandalous ruling by an Egyptian court to classify Hamas's resistance wing, the Izziddin al Qassam Brigades, as a "terrorist group" caricatures the pathetic state of affairs engulfing Egypt since the bloody military coup against the democratically elected President Muhammed Mursi took place in 2013.

Since then, everything in Egypt seems falling down. The economy is collapsing as Egypt is living on handouts from oil-rich Arab states apprehensive about possible challenges to their tribal entities by Sunni Islamic movements such as the Muslim Brotherhood (BM). The Egyptian currency is down the train as its exchange value continues its free fall, and the so-called justice system is in shambles as unfaithful judges are used as virtual rubber stamps to issue vindictive and draconian rulings against the regime's political opponents, particularly the Islamists.

However, the most immediate peril facing Egypt today is the seemingly relentless insurgency against the Sissi regime. Hundreds of mostly army personnel have been killed. In the restive Sinai Peninsula, deadly attacks on army installations and barracks now assume a daily frequency. A few days ago, at least 30 soldiers were killed in an attack claimed by insurgents loyal to the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant.

With frustration easily detected in the tone of his voice, Sissi has admitted the uphill task of beating the insurgents. He blamed the MB but without giving any credible evidence corroborating the accusation, made ad nauseam since the bloody coup.

Indeed, the Egyptian regime, apart from the rhetorical and spasmodic media propaganda against the MB, has failed to prove the Ikhwan's involvement in the spiraling violence.

Indeed, the Ikhwan themselves have strongly and consistently condemned the violence, including the latest attack in Sinai.

The increasingly conspicuous failure of the Sissi regime to quell the insurgency has apparently made the regime embark on a series of irrational decisions, including the demolition of thousands of houses on the Egyptian side of Rafah for the purpose of creating a security zone. The wanton and speedy demolitions, justified by the war-on-terror mantra, have generated a lot of indignation among the mostly impoverished affected populace who received a meager compensation for their homes and property.

The regime continued to give the impression that the insurgency originated outside Egypt, especially in the Gaza Strip across the borders.

However, exhaustive interrogations and investigations are yet to validate the regime's hypothesis about blaming Gaza's Palestinians.

A few months ago, a high-ranking delegation from Gaza met with Egyptian security officials. According to Hamas's veteran leader Mahmoud Zahhar, the Egyptians couldn't cite a single incident whereby Hamas's men were involved in any security breach in Sinai.

"We asked them to give us information that would indict any of Hamas individuals, and they told us they knew that Hamas was totally innocent of any wrongdoing," Zahhar said on al-Jazeera Saturday, 31 January.

Deflecting the crisis

Hamas has absolutely no interest in upsetting Egypt, its only conduit to the outside world. The Egyptian regime knows this fact very well.

Indeed, Hamas has taken meticulous measures to prevent infiltration into Sinai from the Gaza Strip.

Yet, hostile measures against the Islamist group by the Egyptian regime and its idiotic courts continued unabated.

This vindictive behavior on the part of the Egyptian regime shows that it is only trying to export its internal problems, having failed in every conceivable sphere. It also demonstrates that the murderous regime is seeking a certificate of good conduct from Israel by displaying blatant hostility against Israel's main Palestinian enemy.

The latest measure against one of the most glorious contemporary Islamic movements should be viewed in this context. It is simply an expression of the Egyptian regime's failure and frustration with regard to the insurgency.

Obscene lies

The obscene lies accusing Hamas's armed wing of involvement with the anti-Sissi insurgency underscores the moral and political bankruptcy of the Sissi junta. But there is no iota of surprise here.

After all, we are talking about a regime that murdered thousands of Egyptian protesters and then had the audacity to claim that the victims killed themselves.

We are talking about a regime that instructs its police thugs, also known as Baltagiya, to rape women protesters as punishment and deterrence. And when some of the women try to file a complaint against the police, the police subject the women to the degrading measure known as "the virginity test."

Today, the Sissi regime has transformed Egypt from a great country with the weight of 90 million people into an insignificant country with the weight of a whore.

The new king of Saudi Arabia, King Salman, has apparently reached this conclusion.

We are hopeful that the new Saudi leadership will make it abundantly clear for the Sissi junta that Egypt's problem is not with the Palestinians across the borders but lies elsewhere.

But the hostility against Hamas does take Egypt into the sphere of ignominy. This is because it puts the Sissi regime on equal footing with Israel, which for long humiliated Egypt and murdered thousands of Egyptians.

Indeed, Hamas, which stood up alone to the Nazi-like Israeli war machine for 52 days while the strongest Arab army was watching passively from across the border deserves respect and admiration, not defamation and condemnation.

But then we are living in an era in which traitors hold the reins. This reminds us of Shawar, the infamous Fatemi ruler who collaborated with the invading Crusaders against the famous Muslim general Salahuddin al-Ayyoubi.

Who says history doesn't repeat itself.

Khalid Amayreh is a veteran Palestinian journalist and political commentator living in occupied Palestine



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