A German tourist was mauled to death by a shark off Egypt's Red Sea coast Sunday, but if popular rumors on the street are to be believed, it was the Israelis who did it.(h/t Matt)
The attack came days after authorities claimed they had hunted and killed a shark believed to have injured three foreign tourists in previous incidents.
A popular account has it that Israel is "dumping" hungry sharks in the Red Sea in a bid to weaken Egypt's thriving tourism industry.
One tourism company operator who owns a small fleet of mini-buses that cater to Cairo's tourist spots told me that Israel wants Egypt to lose one of its most vital economic resources so that it can toe the line on the Palestinians.
A waiter at a popular cafe went further and theorized that the deadly fires in Northern Israel were God's way of punishing the Israelis for orchestrating the shark attacks.
"Look at how God has brought Israel to its knees as it asks the world - even Egypt - for help in putting out the fires," he said.
Blaming Israel for nearly every malady is not restricted to loony street conspiracies. Political analysts blame Israel for emboldening Nile Basin countries in Africa to dispute Egypt's share of the river, fueling diplomatic tensions between Cairo and regional capitals.
And in mid-August, when a series of power blackouts lefts millions of Egyptians sweltering in the summer sun, who did they blame? Some speculated that gas exports to Israel have left Egyptian power plants "undernourished".
On December 5, the Ministry of health reported that two women had died from the H1N1 and Avian flu viruses, respectively. No word yet on whether the birds flew in from Israel.
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