President Obama’s October 9th decision to suspend millions of dollars in U.S. military aid to Egypt came after two years of intense public pressure following Mubarak’s ouster. In all likelihood, however, it is probably a temporary scheme to avoid further public allegations that Obama supports the dictatorial coup regime in Egypt.
But it may have been even more cynical than that. One of the biggest problems with U.S. military aid to Egypt is the small arms and riot gear that security forces use to disperse crowds of peaceful protesters or crack down more generally on the population’s democratic ambitions. This type of aid may not be included in the suspension, but it’s hard to know because unless the arms transfer is a multi-million dollar war plane, they often are not even publicly disclosed.
Amnesty International lays out what Obama needs to do for the suspension of Egypt aid to actually mean something. Geoffrey Mock says “It’s time to ensure that Egyptian human rights violations don’t come labeled ‘Made in the USA.,’” and lists recommendations Amnesty has sent in a letter to the White House.
- U.S. lawmakers criticize Egypt aid cuts, consider changing law (Reuters)
- Egypt’s lobby by proxy wields outsize influence in DC (Al Jazeera)
- ‘Israel bluntly told the US not to cut aid to Egypt’ (Times of Israel)
- Egypt FM: Relations With US in ‘Turmoil’ Since Military Aid Cuts (Antiwar)
- Egypt sends delegation to Russia, rejects US pressure (Egypt Independent)
- Egypt ‘looking to Russia’ for arms after US aid freeze (Times of Israel)
- European Union calls on Egypt to lift state of emergency (MEMO)
- GOP senator holds up $60M in economic aid to Egypt (AP)
- Egyptian coup leaders hire US lobbyist with ties to Israel (MEMO)