This tweet from President-elect Donald Trump directly implies his willingness to lean into the problem:
And President-Elect Donald Trump is not alone carrying optimism:
CAIRO — Egypt says its president received a call from President-elect Donald Trump in which they both agreed to give the incoming U.S. administration a chance to try and resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
The call came hours after Egypt indefinitely postponed a U.N. vote on a Security Council resolution criticizing Israeli settlements following pressure from Israel and Trump, who had called on members to veto it.
A statement from the Egyptian presidency says the two men spoke by phone early Friday and agreed on “the importance of giving a chance for the new American administration to deal in a comprehensive way with the different aspects of the Palestinian issue with the aim of achieving a comprehensive and a final resolution.” (read more)
After candidate Donald Trump and President Fattah Abdel al-Sisi met in New York, the secular-minded Egyptian leader was very warm in his praise of Trump after the election:
“I believe that President Trump will be vigorously engaged with the issues in the region,” el-Sisi said. “As a matter of fact, Trump has shown deep and great understanding of what is taking place in the region as a whole and Egypt in particular. I am looking forward and expecting more support and reinforcement of our bilateral relations.” (link)
For several years we have discussed how President Obama’s ideological support of the Muslim Brotherhood (via Morsi) was summarily rebuked by the majority of the Egyptian people who saw themselves become victims to Obama’s policies.
The consequential outcomes all over the middle east stemmed from Obama’s fuse-lighting during his 2009 Cairo University speech, which ultimately empowered Muslim extremists and gave birth to the “Islamist spring” in 2010.
Fattah al-Sisi has been one of the few voices within the Mid-East, along with Jordan’s King Abdullah (both pictured below), who have consistently led with secular governance and minority religious protection.
In short, both Abdullah and Sisi have been lone calm voices amid a fury of chaos unleashed by Obama’s policy.
At the core of their leadership, comparing views and perspectives toward national governance as it relates to larger global issues, both President al-Sisi and President Trump have much in common. Hopefully, the commonality portends a very real and reasonable realignment within the Israeli/Palestinian conflict.
For those unfamilar with how much Sisi has done to try and stop extremists within the middle east, here’s a summary of action taken by al-Sisi showing his commitment to eliminating extremism – Originally outlined January 2015:
Some western media have begun to take note of Egypt’s President Fatah al-Sisi who challenged the larger Muslim religion to confront violent religious extremism.
So allow us to highlight some of the actionable items that showcase a man of action behind his words. Since reluctantly taking power in 2013 Fattah al-Sisi has:
◾Disbanded the Muslim Brotherhood as a political terror entity. (link) (link)
◾Arrested those who burned churches and attacked Coptic Christians. (link) (link)
◾Jailed or banished the extremist forces. (link)
◾Supported Israel’s right to exist and defend it’s borders. (link) (link)
◾Defeated Hamas in the border region. (link) (link)
◾Destroyed the border terror tunnels used by Hamas (link) (link)
◾Pressured Hamas and the PA to negotiate the ceasefire, and forced the PA and Hamas to assemble ONE negotiating group for their interests. (link) (link)
◾Fought extremism in the Sinai region, and fought against ISIS infiltration.
◾Fought the Libyan new al-Qaeda network “Libyan Dawn”. (link)
◾Charged and prosecuted the leadership of the Muslim Brotherhood, who fled to Qatar. (link)
◾Followed the MB to Qatar and initiated sanctions against Qatar until they stopped financing and harboring terror. (link)
◾Formed a coalition against Qatar including the UAE and Saudi Arabia who withdrew their ambassadors and isolated Qatar in the region. (link) (link)
◾Won reelection with almost 70% of the vote. (link) (link ) (link)
◾Holds an 80%+ job approval rating among ALL Egyptians. (link)
◾Shut down Qatar financed Al Jazerra propaganda machine. (link)
◾Supported the framework for a new constitution which supports minority protections. (link)
◾Won a victory against Qatar as they finally conceded and stopped safeguarding terrorists. Sending the MB leadership to the new safe harbor of Turkey. (link)
◾United the moderate (non violent) Arab coalition, the Gulf Security Council, and constructed a unity principle that supports the safety of Jordan and formed a coalition to defend if needed. (link)
◾Faced down and quietly defeated Turkey’s bid for a security council seat in the United Nations. (link) (link)
◾Negotiated a safe passage coalition for Israel and Greece to form an energy based economic trade agreement.
◾Continues to fight the Islamist extremists inside Libya. (link) (link)
◾Continues to fight ISIS in the Northern Sinai region. (link) (link) (link)
◾Expanded the border safety zone with Gaza to insure greater control and protection from weapons smuggling. (link)
Despite President Obama undermining Egypt, that list is just a few of the actions al-Sisi took.
Then he boldy stood in front of the heads of the country’s leading Muslim groups and called for them “to confront the misleading ideologies harming Islam and Muslims worldwide.”
In response to al-Sisi’s speech Al-Azhar stated:
CAIRO: Dar al-Iftaa has responded to President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi’s call for a “religious revolution” by launching a national project aiming to correct the image of Islam through social media, foreign visits, publications, and issuing fatwas that “suit the modern age,” Ibrahim Negm, advisor to the Grand Mufti said in Friday press statements.
“We should closely examine the situation in which we are in. It does not make sense that the thought we sanctify pushes this entire nation to become a source of apprehension, danger, murder and destruction in the entire world,” Sisi said in a Thursday speech before Egypt’s top religious leaders on the occasion of the Birth of Prophet Mohamed.
“I am not saying the religion [itself]. I am saying this thought that has been sanctified; texts and thoughts that have been sanctified for hundreds of years. And disagreeing with [these texts and thoughts] has become very difficult. To the extent that [this thought] makes an enemy of the whole world,” Sisi added.
Dar al-Iftaa, Egypt’s government-sponsored religious institution responsible for issuing fatwas and religious opinions, will work to achieve the “highest degree of effective communication” with Muslims in Egypt, Arab countries and the world.
Established in 970, Al-Azhar is the most prestigious Sunni institution in the Islamic world.
Al-Azhar’s newly formed Monitor of Infedilizing Fatwas Dept., which responds to radical Islamists’ fatwas labeling other Muslims apostates, has already issued many articles slamming the “extremist opinions” of “non-specialized” sheikhs that receive the attention of a segment of Muslims.
“You cannot feel what [this thought] is when you are inside it. You have to get out of it, inspect it, and read it with a real enlightened thought. You need to take a strong stance. I am reiterating, we need a religious revolution,” Sisi said in his speech, prompting Al-Azhar scholars to applaud. (read more)
That speech was two years ago. With the election of President Trump, both nations have the very real potential for something even more astounding to happen. Something wonderful.
During one of the GOP primary debates Jeb Bush attempted to ridicule Donald Trump by saying that solving the Israeli/Palestinian conflict was not like negotiating some kind of business real estate deal. However, the potential for any peace deal would revolve significantly around “real estate”.
Knowing everything above, and knowing the overarching perspectives behind all of the conflict, and knowing the current issues with the northern Sinai region, and knowing how ultimately all key leadership want a lasting legacy of significance…
…Think about Fattah al-Sisi, Benjamin Netanyahu, Mahmoud Abbas and Donald Trump meeting together in Camp David and finding a real solution possibly including part of the Northern Sinai region.
Lastly, if you think about the current construction enhancements (changes taking place with the Suez Canal zone), there’s an outline -tenuous though it might be- of something entirely possible.