Monday, July 30, 2012

CIA Archives: Egypt-Israel Disturbances - Newsreel Footage (1957)

Egypt--Israel relations are foreign relations between Egypt and Israel. The state of war between both countries which dated back from the 1948 Arab--Israeli War ended in 1979 with the Egyptian--Israeli Peace Treaty a year after the Camp David Accords. Full diplomatic relations were established on February 26, 1980. Since then, relations have improved. Egypt has an embassy in Tel Aviv and a general consulate in Eilat. Israel has an embassy in Cairo and a general consulate in Alexandria.

Both countries are full members of the Union for the Mediterranean.

Their shared border has two official crossings, at Taba and Nitzana, however, the crossing at Nitzana is for commercial traffic only.

The peace between Egypt and Israel has lasted for more than thirty years, and Egypt has become an important strategic partner of Israel. Binyamin Ben-Eliezer, a former defence minister known for his close ties to Egyptian officials has stated that "Egypt is not only our closest friend in the region, the co-operation between us goes beyond the strategic."

Nevertheless, the peace is often described as a "cold Peace," with many in Egypt skeptical about its effectiveness. The Arab-Israeli conflict has kept relations cool and anti-semitic incitement is prevalent in the Egyptian media.

In 2003, Egyptian Air Force UAVs entered Israeli airspace and overflew the nuclear research facilities at Nahal Sorek in fear of the development of nuclear weapons, and Palmachim Airbase. Israel threatened to shoot the drones down.

Although diplomatic relations were established in 1980, the Egyptian ambassador to Israel was recalled between 1982 and 1988, and also between 2001 and 2005 due to the Second Intifada.

According to an Egyptian Government 2006, poll of 1000 Egyptians (taken at the time of the 2006 Israel-Lebanon conflict) 92% of Egyptians view Israel as an enemy nation. In Israel, there is lasting support of the Camp David Peace Accords, which have become a national consensus, supported by 85% of Israelis according to a 2001 poll taken by the Jaffee Center for Strategic Studies (Israel based).

Egypt has mediated several unofficial cease fire understandings between Israel and the Palestinians. There have been many popular protests in Egypt against peace with Israel (from all levels of society, up to and including intellectuals, students and democratization movements such as Kifaya). These typically intensify following Israeli actions in its conflicts with the Palestinians and Lebanon, which Israel views as self-defence, but are seen in Egypt as harsh repression of Arabs.

The Egyptian Revolution of 2011 led to fears in Israel about the future of the treaty, although the Israeli Prime Minister stated that he expected any new Egyptian government to keep the peace treaty with Israel, as it has served both countries well. After the Egyptian Army took power on 11 February 2011, it announced that Egypt would continue to abide by all its international and regional treaties. Following the overthrowing of Hosni Mubarak the Israeli-Egyptian relations reached its lowest level since the 1979 Egypt--Israel Peace Treaty, as the Israeli-Egyptian border became a region of conflict and instability following the rise of terrorist activity in the Sinai Peninsula and following hostility manifestation from masses of Egyptian protesters against Israel in the streets of Cairo.

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