U.S. Imperialist Gangsters Resume Military Aid to Bloody Egyptian Regime

April 6, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper | revcom.us


On March 31, 2015, U.S. President Barack Obama announced that military aid would be restored to the blood-soaked ruling regime in Egypt. This means the reflowing of major weapons orders such as twelve F-16 aircraft, 20 Harpoon missiles, and up to 125 M1A1 tank kits that were in the pipeline when aid was suspended in October 2013. It also means the resuming of the $1.3 billion per year aid to the Egyptian military, which is second only to the over $3 billion in annual aid the U.S. gives to Israel. The Pentagon has stated that one of the goals of the resumption of military aid to Egypt is to fund a restructuring of the Egyptian military to focus on “counterterrorist” operations.

BAsics 3:1

Obama had ordered the suspension of military aid to Egypt after Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi came to power in a violent coup d'état in 2013. As head of the Egyptian military, he overthrew the elected government that was led by the reactionary Islamist group, the Muslim Brotherhood. Hundreds of protesters against the coup were massacred in the streets, and at least 40,000 people were rounded up in waves of arrests. Hundreds were given death sentences. Some were tortured to death and many remain in prison. Liberal and progressive dissenters were also targeted, and just recently, a small peaceful street demonstration against human rights abuses was attacked by police in Cairo, and a young woman protester, Shaimaa al Sabbagh, was murdered in cold blood.

Obama’s show of “concern” over the Sisi coup was short lived. The U.S. government endorsed the 2014 election in which Sisi engineered his transition from military coup leader to “elected president.” During this same period, the Egyptian courts released the former dictator Hosni Mubarak. During the 30 years of brutal rule under Mubarak, there was a permanent “national security emergency” in Egypt and all basic civil and human rights were trampled on. And all during this time, Mubarak was backed 100 percent by the U.S.

1n 2011, millions of Egyptians risked death and many were killed in an inspiring upsurge that finally drove Mubarak from office. Yet despite all the sacrifice, the same military and economic powers that had been privileged under Mubarak retained state power and among these was then-army general (now president) Sisi.

Egypt is a vital part of the American domination of the Middle East. Stephen Hadley, a former U.S. national security advisor, told the Washington Post recently that “Egypt is even more strategically important now than in the past because stabilizing the Middle East is crucial and we don’t have a lot of partners to help. If Egypt were to descend into chaos, that would compound the problem.”

In a phone call to Sisi confirming the restoration of military aid to Egypt, Obama told him the aid “will help refine our military assistance relationship so that it is better positioned to address the shared challenges to U.S. and Egyptian interests in an unstable region, consistent with the longstanding strategic partnership between our two countries.”

Egypt is the most populous Arab country, with 90 million people. What happens in Egypt affects large parts of the Middle East, as can be seen by the inspiration millions in the region took from the Egyptian people’s struggle against the Mubarak dictatorship. Now, what Obama refers to as American “interests” require that Egypt become relatively stable so it can back up the continued domination of the region by the U.S.

Map of Middle EastMap: revcom.us

Throughout the uprising of 2011, the Egyptian government and military stood by the shameful Camp David treaty of 1977 in which Egypt guaranteed the security of the state of Israel. And even with contradictions in the relationship, Israel remains a key enforcer for U.S. imperialism. (For more on the role of Israel, see the Revolution/revcom.us special issue Bastion of Enlightenment...or Enforcer for Imperialism: The Case of Israel.) Egypt has continued to play a crucial role in the blockade of Gaza, denying the Palestinians there basic human necessities of food, water, and shelter, even as Israel has cut off every other point of entry and has pounded the people of Gaza with murderous missiles and tank shells.

Another example of the mission for which Egypt is needed to meet “shared challenges to U.S. and Egyptian interests in an unstable region” is the current situation in Yemen. A joint Arab military force in Yemen has already massacred dozens of innocent civilians in air strikes carried out by Egyptian and Saudi forces. This is a deadly escalation of the murder of Yemeni civilians, who have for years been terrorized by a growing number of attacks from U.S. drones, supposedly launched against al-Qaeda groupings in Yemen.

Obama’s former “tough talk”—in reality, double-talk—about human rights in Egypt was and is a cover for continuing the relationship that is in the joint “interests” of the U.S. imperialists and of the ruling class in Egypt. Those interests are completely against the genuine interests of the people, in Egypt and elsewhere. Obama, like every U.S. president before him, is a war criminal who leads and serves the needs of American imperialism, not the interests of the people anywhere in the world.

U.S. “interests” have meant, and will only mean, tremendous horrors for people throughout the Middle East and in Egypt.


For more in-depth information and background on the situation in Egypt and the struggles of the Egyptian people, see these resources at www.revcom.us:


Volunteers Needed... for revcom.us and Revolution

Send us your comments.

If you like this article, subscribe, donate to and sustain Revolution newspaper.