Egyptian policy toward Israel has largely remained consistent, despite rhetoric from the Muslim Brotherhood-controlled government that indicates otherwise, a leading Middle East expert told Moment Magazine.
David Pollock, a fellow at The Washington Institute for Near East Policy, said that Egypt is actively trying to de-escalate the conflict between Hamas and Israel, and though the Morsi-controlled government in Egypt is an ideological offshoot of Hamas, the country’s policies—until now—are similar to what they were under Mubarak.
“Despite rhetoric, Egypt is not actually doing things that would escalate the conflict. They are still brokering a cease-fire and keeping the border under control. They’re not explicitly using this as a reason to tear up the peace treaty.
“The policy has not changed much, and what’s ironic is that because the Brotherhood is viewed more popularly and is seen as legitimate, today you actually have fewer protests against what’s happening now in Gaza than you did under Mubarak,” said Pollock.
Three Israelis and more than 90 Palestinians, some of them civilians, have been killed since tensions flared six days ago. Morsi has called Israel’s attacks a “blatant aggression against humanity.”
“I tell them (Israelis) in the name of all the Egyptian people that the Egypt of today is not the Egypt of yesterday and that the Arabs of today are different than the Arabs of yesterday,” he said.
But Pollack says that, words aside, Egypt continues to play a key role in brokering an agreement.
“Morsi and the Brotherhood hate Israel and love Hamas, but in practice, they are going to follow their heads and not their hearts on this one.”
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