Monday, May 06, 2024

  • Monday, May 06, 2024
  • Elder of Ziyon

Middle East Eye, a UK-based web newspaper reportedly funded by Qatar, reports that Egypt has been creating an alliance to help stop any influx of Palestinians who want to escape Gaza in case of an Israeli invasion of Rafah:

Egypt’s military intelligence has held meetings with Sinai tribes in recent weeks to discuss their potential role in the event of an Israeli invasion of Rafah in southern Gaza, Middle East Eye can reveal.

At the meetings, Egyptian intelligence officers said they estimated a Palestinian influx of between 50,000 and 250,000 people towards Sinai if Israel carries out a ground operation in the Palestinian Rafah.

The meetings were held prior to the controversial creation of an alliance of tribal groups at the Egyptian side of Rafah, led by the influential pro-government businessman and militia leader Ibrahim al-Organi. 

According to three Sinai tribal sources and one Egyptian security source, in the weeks leading up to the event, a number of meetings were held in North Sinai between senior members of Bedouin tribes, officers from the Secret Service apparatus in the military intelligence (known internally as Group 55), and others from the Second Field Army. 

The main topic of these meetings was the possibility of the influx of a large number of residents of the Gaza Strip due to a potential Israeli military operation in the Palestinian city of Rafah, which now hosts about 1.5 million displaced Palestinians. 

All sources spoke on condition of anonymity fearing reprisals from the Egyptian army.

According to three people who attended these meetings, the army and intelligence officers emphasised the necessity of assisting the armed forces and security agencies in “monitoring any infiltration of Palestinians” towards the villages and centres of North Sinai should this displacement occur, and warned against harbouring any of them and immediately reporting any movement of unfamiliar individuals in the areas close to the border.

According to the three Sinai sources, during meetings between Group 55 and Sinai tribal leaders, a number of attendees said it would be difficult to comply with official demands to prevent the entry of Palestinians into Sinai and report any movements across the borders, even with promises that the government would accommodate all displaced individuals. They highlighted their familial ties and relationships with people in the Gaza Strip, particularly Rafah, stating that it would be against their honour and Bedouin and tribal traditions to refuse hospitality and reception to them.

Egypt tries hard to say that they want Gazans to stay put fo rthe good of all Palestinians, but n Arabs seem to buy it. At the same time, no one wants to say otherwise out loud at the risk of being accused of being a Zionist. 

One story later in the article sheds some new light on what some Gazans thought of "occupation:"

During one of his meetings with the tribes, General Shousha shared an anecdote with the participants, asking them not to publish it, dating back to 2005 when the Egyptian border was breached by large numbers of people from Gaza following the Israeli withdrawal from the Strip. At that time, he was the commander of the border guard forces. 
Hold on: Israel withdrew from Gaza and a large number of Palestinians fled to Egypt? Even before Hamas took over the sector?


Apparently, they felt that Israeli "occupation" was far preferable to any Palestinian self-rule. 

This is the sort of story that gets suppressed by the media because it doesn't follow the narrative. As a result, politicians make decisions based on incomplete information. 

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Elder of Ziyon - حـكـيـم صـهـيـون

This blog may be a labor of love for me, but it takes a lot of effort, time and money. For over 19 years and 40,000 articles I have been providing accurate, original news that would have remained unnoticed. I've written hundreds of scoops and sometimes my reporting ends up making a real difference. I appreciate any donations you can give to keep this blog going.


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