Thursday, August 23, 2012

Could Repercussions Of Sinai Terrorist Attack Make Gazan Tunnels Unnecessary?

Originally, the terrorist in Sinai not only appeared to put Morsi in hot water -- it also seemed to sour relations between Egypt and Hamas. There were stories that Egypt had forced Hamas to close its tunnels leading to Egypt and that Egypt had begun destroying the Gazan tunnels as well.

But now Maan is suggesting A tunnel-free future for Gaza, based on discussions Hamas is having with Egypt to open the Rafah crossing between Gaza and Egypt to commercial trade:
“In the end, what happened in Sinai might turn out to have a positive impact on the future relations between Egypt and Gaza,” said Mustafa Sawaf, former chief-editor of the Hamas-affiliated Filistin newspaper.

Since Aug. 5, when Egypt closed the crossing and started shutting down some of the tunnels, the import of fuel and construction material has reportedly declined by 30 and 70 percent, respectively, and power cuts have reached up to 16 hours a day, according to the UN Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.

A free trade zone would provide Gaza with more facilities, energy and access to goods, says Hamad, who is also the chairman of the border crossings authority in the Gaza Strip, “but it wouldn’t turn Gaza into some kind of Taiwan. We have to remain realistic. It should bring people back to a normal life”.
Of course Maan, which notes that Hamas came to power in Gaza in 2006, but forgets to mention the bloody coup in 2007 that gave it complete control, makes no mention throughout the entire article that the flow of goods to Gaza also includes the rockets that the Hamas terrorist group fires on Israeli civilians in violation of international law.

So just as the August terrorist attack started a sequence of events that led to Egypt moving extra troops and weapons into the Sinai in violation of Egypt's peace treaty with Israel, so too is there the possibility of the opening of the border between Egypt and Gaza -- making Israel's blockade of weapons into Gaza ineffective.

Other considerations:
  • Egypt would not look favorably on a open border that allows Gazans to enter and compete in the workplace with Egyptians desperate for work

  • The tunnels are currently an essential part of the Gazan economy, and the millionaires and near-millionaires will not give up their tunnels quietly
In the meantime, August has seen a whole new front open up to distract Israel.
And there is still another week to go.

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1 comment:

Empress Trudy said...

It's unlikely they'd discard the "Jews are blockading us!" tactic by opening the border.