Wednesday, January 23, 2013
Four F-16 fighter jets left the U.S., bound for Egypt as part of a foreign aid package critics say should have been scrapped when the nation elected a president who has called President Obama a liar and urged that hatred of Jews be instilled in children.
Sixteen F-16s and 200 Abrams tanks are to be given to the Egyptian government before the end of the year under a foreign aid deal signed in 2010 with then-Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, a longtime U.S. ally..
Critics, including several in Congress, say it doesn’t make sense to follow through with the package, given that new Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi, elected last summer, has given decidedly mixed signals about relations with the U.S. While he has toned down his rhetoric since his election, in 2010 – the same year the aid package was struck – Morsi attacked Obama for supporting Israel.
“One American president after another — and most recently, that Obama — talks about American guarantees for the safety of the Zionists in Palestine,” Morsi, then a leader of the Muslim Brotherhood, said on Egyptian television in reaction to Obama’s 2009 speech in Cairo. “[Obama] was very clear when he uttered his empty words on the land of Egypt. He uttered many lies, of which he couldn’t have fulfilled a single word, even if he were sincere — which he is not.”
In the comments translated by the Middle East Media Research Institute, Morsi went on to urge that children be taught to hate Jews.
Many worry that arming such a volatile Egypt will endanger Israel.