Tuesday, February 08, 2011

The Pursuit Of Folly Continues

I'm trying not to be obsessive in my posting about Egypt, but I woke up this morning thinking that there was an elephant in the room that no one has really spoken of. We read about the personal fortune of the Mubarak Clan, now estimated at almost 75 billion dollars, which would easily make Hosni Mubarak the worlds richest man, and how his family is trying to circle the wagons so to speak as he hangs on to power. There is speculation that he does not want to leave Egypt because, no matter how powerful he is, the world is not a safe place for an ex dictator with the possibility of a Human Rights trial at the Hague, but why was there such an obvious mis step by the Obama administration over the weekend when the ex American ambassador to Egypt, from 1986 to 1991, Frank Wisner, Jr. was sent to talk to Mubarak by the State department to supposedly aid in his decision to transfer power? 
Vijay Prashad wrote a very informed piece published in Counterpunch titled, The Empire's Bagman which details the now known connections between Wisner and the Mubarak government. Wisner, an appointed career diplomat who had worked for Enron and the CIA is seasoned State Department official, a very close friend of Mubarak, a man more committed to stability than democracy, and, yes, an employee at Patton Boggs, where one of the portfolios is for Patton Boggs to lobby on behalf of the government of Egypt. To the seeming embarrassment of the administration, Wisner walked out of the meeting to announce that in his opinion, Mubarak should stay in power until the fall elections. He then was obliged to state that it was his opinion as a private citizen.
But why do we have to accept that this was a clumsy error when this is more obviously an elaborate pas de trois, involving the Israelis, the Americans and the established Egyptian regime? The stated desire of all three dancers is the "orderly transition" over seen by the present Vice President, Omar Suleiman, who even though he might be referred to as a Mubarak-lite, Mubarak number two, will come in and carry the pillars forward.  The choice of Suleiman as Israel's preferred successor to Mubarak was confirmed today in a release by Wikileaks.

But the real elephant in the room, the reason for America's reticence, Israel's fear of any change and the almost strident militant illogic of the Pro Israel, Jewish Conservative Intellectuals is unspoken.
At the heart of the concern is intelligence indicating that Egypt has quietly carried out research and development on weapons of mass destruction, including nuclear, chemical, biological and missile technology.
Specifically, intelligence indicates that  Egypt has carried out experiments in plutonium and uranium enrichment, helped jump-start Saddam Hussein's missile and chemical weapons programs in Iraq and worked with Kim Il-Jung on North Korea's missile program.
A former U.S. intelligence official, speaking on condition of anonymity said, "If we found another country doing what they've done, we would have been all over them".
The reason the U.S. didn't move, of course was Egypt's staunch role as an ally in stabilizing forces in the Middle east and later as a key player in U.S. counter terrorism efforts through the key involvement of Omar Suleiman.
If Hosni Mubarak is forced to step down,it is feared that the new leadership in Cairo could mean a radical change in that relationship.
As late as 2003 while Mohamed ElBaradei, who is the focus of the anti government leadership, led the International Atomic Energy Agency, it was reported that Egypt has successfull conducted illegal and covert successful experiments to enrich weapons grade uranium and plutonium.
Mubarak had already hinted that he was preparing to withdraw from the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty which Egypt signed in 1968. This and much more is available and documented from this link at NBC Washington.com in an article dated February 7, 2011.
If we are going to have an unreasonable, illogical screaming match, then perhaps we should really know what what we are illogically screaming about. Okay?

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