Does Germany have a new Middle East policy?

Violent conflicts are spreading throughout the Middle East. Germany is working with Egypt, supporting Saudi Arabia and delivering weapons to the peshmerga – but the government opposition in Berlin is critical.

Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi has been in office for almost a year. Soon he’s due to visit Germany. In March, German Economy Minister Sigmar Gabriel extended an invitation on behalf of Chancellor Angela Merkel. That marked a departure from the government’s earlier position that parliamentary elections in Egypt were a precondition for an official state visit by the president. Continue reading

Mansour and el-Sissi – the two men running Egypt

 Judge Adly Mansour has been sworn in as interim president in Egypt after Mohammed Morsi’s outing, but the real powerhouse is the military, which is led by General Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi.

“I swear by God to honor the law and the constitution and to serve justice.” Barely 24 hours after President Mohammed Morsi had been ousted, Adly Mansour was sworn in as interim president. Continue reading

Egypt, Syria are falling apart – an Israeli nightmare unfolds

Israeli Air Force Commander Maj. Gen. Amir Eshel warned Tuesday, Jan. 29, that Syria is falling apart and no one knows what the next day may bring: “War may not break out tomorrow,” he said, “but we stand ready for any eventuality.”

If war is not expected tomorrow, why have Israel’s armed forces, including the air force, been on their highest level of preparedness since Friday, Jan. 25? The Syrian crisis may not technically fit the description of a state of war. However, the violent turbulence in that country may at any time spill over the border into hostilities in some shape or form.

If this happens, said the officer, “A decision to attack Syria or Lebanon will need to be implemented immediately.” Continue reading