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Christians massacred: Obama praised the new Egypt & possible sale of tanks

Christians massacred: Obama praised the new Egypt & possible sale of tanks

Joachim de Villiers and Lee Jay Walker

Modern Tokyo Times

Hosni Mubarak lost power in Egypt earlier this year and the former friend of America was rebuked by President Obama of America. Obama stated that “Egypt will never be the same” and that the peaceful movement “bent the arc of history.” However, words are cheap because the military maintained its power and the Muslim Brotherhood is the most powerful Islamic movement in the world when it applies to ideology.

Recent footage shows a different Egyptian military which appears anti-Christian and willing to use force against the Christian minority. This is a dangerous period for Egypt and a far cry from Obama’s words which stated that people could create a new democratic government which “represented their hopes and not their fears.”

It may well be that Egypt becomes a democratic nation in the future and that Christians will have equal rights one day in a nation which favors the Muslim majority. However, the Muslim Brotherhood clearly desires an Islamic state irrespective of any manipulation of language that they may state. 

Christians suffered from institutional discrimination during the period of Mubarak but forces which desire to crush the Christian minority were kept under a leash. In the “new Egypt” Islamists are demanding more constraints against the Christian minority and the military doesn’t fear driving into a mainly Christian crowd and killing people.

David K. Kirkpatrick (New York Times) in his article called Church Protests in Cairo Turn Deadly comments that “The protest took place against a backdrop of escalating tensions between Muslims and Coptic Christians, who make up about 10 percent of the population. Christians had joined the pro-democracy protests in large numbers, hoping for the protections of a pluralistic, democratic state, but a surge in power of Islamists has raised fears of how much tolerance majority rule will allow.

“But the most common refrain of the protests on Sunday was, “The people want to bring down the field marshal,” adapting the signature chant of the revolution to call for the resignation of the military’s top officer, Field Marshal Mohamed Hussein Tantawi.”

David K. Kirkpatrick in the last paragraph comments that Father Ephraim Magdy, a priest fleeing the tear gas, said he saw soldiers fire live bullets at protesters, and showed a journalist two bullet shells. “It is up to the military to explain what happened, but I see it as persecution,” he said. “I felt that they were monsters. It’s impossible for them to be Egyptians, let alone members of the army that protected the revolution.”

However, it was the army with support from security officials in plain clothes and Muslims who turned against Christians. The original demonstration was based on the recent partial dismantling of a Christian church in Aswan and some Muslims also joined in on the side of the Christian demonstrators.

It is clear that elements within the army are biased against the Christian community and the Muslim Brotherhood and other Sunni Islamic extremist organizations seek an Islamic state.  It is wishful thinking to believe that pluralism will be guaranteed in the short-term because you have too many negative forces in Egypt which seek power and to crush democracy.

The German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle condemned the violence against the Coptic Christian minority.  He stated that “It is about time that the Egyptian leadership understands the importance of religious plurality and tolerance.”

Clearly the comment “It is about time…” is aimed at constant anti-Christian agitation by Islamists and Muslim rulers who are opposed to religious equality. Therefore, this comment is widely appreciated because Guido Westerwelle is making it clear that he fully understands that the recent massacre is not an isolated case against the Christian community.

Meanwhile, turning back to Obama and democracy, then despite anti-Christian attacks and growing fears of the role of the Muslim Brotherhood in a future government; America is intent on arming the current military of Egypt despite the delays to democracy and their role in doing little to protect Christians.

The Defense Security Cooperation Agency “notified Congress Friday of a possible Foreign Military Sale to the Government of Egypt for 125 M1A1 Abrams tank kits for co-production and associated weapons, equipment, parts, training and logistical support for an estimated cost of $1.329 billion.”

The Government of Egypt has requested a possible sale that includes 125 M1A1 Abrams tank kits for co-production, 125 M256 Armament Systems, 125 M2 .50 caliber machine guns, 250 M240 7.62mm machine guns, 125 AGT-1500 M1A1 series tank engines and transmissions, 120mm test cartridges, spare and repair parts, maintenance, support equipment, special tool and test equipment, personnel training and equipment, publications and technical documentation, U.S. Government and contractor engineering and logistics support services, and other related elements of logistics and program support. Articles may be provided in furtherance of a co-production agreement. The estimated cost is $1.329 billion.”

“This proposed sale will contribute to the foreign policy and national security of the United States by helping to improve the security of a friendly country that has been and continues to be an important force for political stability and economic progress in the Middle East.”

“The additional M1A1 tanks will provide Egypt with a modern tank fleet, enhancing its capability to meet current and future threats. This will contribute to Egypt’s goal to update its military capability while further enhancing interoperability between Egypt, the U.S., and other allies. Egypt, which has co-produced the M1A1 Abrams tank, will have no difficulty absorbing the additional tanks.”

Therefore, before democracy is installed and during a period of constant attacks against Christians throughout various parts of Egypt, it is nice to know “the real Obama” and restate his naïve comments after the demise of Mubarak.

Obama stated that “Egypt will never be the same” and he said this like a child and with glee but he wasn’t in any position to know if this would become a reality after the downfall of Mubarak.  Then while democracy is being stalled by the military and Islamic attacks continue against the Christian minority, the “democratic President” of America is in full knowledge about possible military sales.

It is clear that Egypt could go in many directions and not all of them are positive. Therefore, the world doesn’t need Obama making empty promises and nor does it need governments to sell military hardware during times of such uncertainty in Egypt.

 

http://www.dsca.mil/pressreleases/36-b/2011/Egypt_10-67.pdf  MILITARY SALES

http://www.copts.com/english/  COPTIC WEBSITE

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/02/12/world/middleeast/12diplomacy.html

http://www.aina.org ASSYRIAN INTERNATIONAL NEWS AGENCY

http://moderntokyotimes.com (please visit)

 
 

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