By Dave Bender
Officials and public figures in Egypt are beginning to call for Israel and Egypt to wipe out Hamas in the Gaza Strip, which some are calling the “armed branch of the Muslim Brotherhood terrorist organization,” that runs the coastal enclave.
A major Egyptian television news commentator savaged Hamas on Sunday for its support of the Muslim Brotherhood, and called on her country to join Israel and strike the Islamist group.
“The Egyptian people know exactly who they are facing, and understand that there is no alternative to employing the Egyptian army to strike terror cells in Gaza and destroy Hamas in a military operation,” Hayah Al Dardiri, a presenter for Egypt Today told viewers.
Another pundit, Azza Sami, of the newspaper Al-Ahram wrote, “Thank you (Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin) Netanyahu and may God give us more [people] like you to destroy Hamas.”
And the critique of Hamas wasn’t only in the media.
Writing in The Gatestone Institute, Israeli journalist and author Khaled Abu Toameh noted that, “Sisi’s Egypt has not forgiven Hamas for its alliance with (the) Muslim Brotherhood and its involvement in terrorist attacks against Egyptian civilians and soldiers over the past year.”
“The Egyptians today understand that Hamas and other radical Islamist groups pose a serious threat to their national security. That is why the Egyptian authorities have, over the past year, been taking tough security measures not only against Hamas, but also the entire population of the Gaza Strip.”
Toameh believes that Hamas was taken aback by the vehemence of some of the positive reactions to Israel’s Operation Protective Edge, which entered its sixth day on Sunday, with a possible ground incursion to foil more rockets attacks into Israel in the offing.
“It’s disgraceful to see that some Egyptians are publicly supporting the Israeli aggression on the Gaza Strip while Westerners are expressing solidarity with the Palestinians and condemning Israel,” one Hamas spokesman said in evident frustration.
Toameh contends that many Egyptians, particularly after the debacle of the rise and fall of the Muslim Brotherhood, view Hamas and like-minded groups as a direct threat to their country’s national security.
Meanwhile, Middle East negotiator and former UK prime minister Tony Blair has met with Egyptian officials in recent days in an effort to stem the fighting between Israel and Hamas through an Egyptian-brokered cease fire.
Watch the Egyptian TV presenter’s call for the destruction of Hamas below:
The Algemeiner Journal