DEBKAfile Exclusive Report May 29, 2009
Tuesday, May 26, prime minister Binyamin Netanyahu lifted Israel's objection to the appointment of Egyptian culture minister Farouk Hosni to the top job at UNESCO, the UN Culture and Education agency, thus disarming an international campaign to scuttle his candidacy over his anti-Israel comments.
Wednesday, Hosni apologized for such comments as calling for Israeli books in Egypt's libraries to be burnt and calling Israeli culture "inhuman."
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report May 18, 2009
Six hundred Egyptian commandos are deployed in northern Sinai and divided Rafah for Cairo's first serious effort ever to cork up the hundreds of Hamas' arms smuggling mega-tunnels into the Gaza Strip, debkafile's military sources reveal.
"If Cairo had done this three years ago," said as a high-ranking Israeli officer, "Iran might never have been able to move in on the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip or spread its wings across into Egypt territory.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report April 19, 2009
According to debkafile's military sources, Egyptian security forces are closing in on a secret Iranian-Hizballah headquarters in central Sinai which has been organizing the flow of smuggled arms to Hamas in the Gaza Strip.
As part of the operation, a 500-strong Egyptian force in armored vehicles carried out a surprise raid on Bedouin territory Monday, April 13.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report April 16, 2009
Neither Cairo nor Tehran is saying out loud that the 49 men, including seven Israeli citizens and one Lebanese citizen, arrested by Egyptian security forces on charges of supporting Hamas and Hezbollah, were the tip of a clandestine Iranian iceberg.
A major Iranian network has been going strong for three years, dug into Egyptian Sinai and the cities along the Suez Canal. It is a major link in Tehran's clandestine chain all the way to Sudan and Eritrea and the key to its arms smuggling route for Hamas.
So why has Cairo fingered Hizballah? And why now?
Read debkafile's Exclusive Report below for the real story.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report March 25, 2009
debkafile's Cairo sources report that last week, Egypt's senior mediator, Gen. Omar Suleiman flew to Washington and foreign minister Aboul Geith traveled to Brussels to ask their governments to underwrite sectionsof the Palestinian unity government accord that circumvent the Middle East Quartet's stipulations for talking to Hamas.
The fate of the captive Israeli soldier Gilead Shalit also hangs on the outcome of the Palestinian talks.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report March 10, 2009
Based on Egyptian intelligence findings, president Hosni Mubarak's aides advised visiting US secretary of state Hillary Clinton last week that an Iranian agent is behind recent attacks on foreign tourists in Cairo, debkafile's exclusive sources report.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report February 24, 2009
The explosion in the Khan El-Khalili Bazaar near Hussein Mosque in Cairo Sunday, Feb. 22 killed a 17-year old French girl. Among the 21 injured was a large group of visiting French teenagers as well as Germans, Saudis and Egyptians. Egyptian police are playing down the attack saying it was caused by a small explosive device, such as a hand grenade, thrown from a balcony. However, witnesses reported a huge explosion and police found and defused a second device at the scene.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report February 22, 2009
debkafile's military sources report that the Egyptian 2nd Army's mechanized division carried out a 10-day military exercise in Sinai dubbed "Bedouin 3." Infantry, armored and artillery units took part as well as F-16 fighter-bombers, Mirage 5E2 fighters and Apache assault helicopters, using live ammunition
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report November 20, 2008
Clashes between insurgent Bedouin and Egyptian border police in central Sinai Friday, Nov. 14, left 25 Egyptians dead. No figures were immediately available on Bedouin casualties. The armed insurrection erupted Saturday, Nov. 7, when Egyptian troops posted at the Nitzana border post opened fire on a suspected drug smugglers' truck, killing the Bedouin driver. The outbreak assumed the form of an organized uprising when their chief commander handed the Egyptian officers a list of eight demands:
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report November 4, 2008
The relevant provision in the National Palestinian Accord drafted by Egyptian intelligence minister Gen. Omar Suleiman enshrines the Palestinians' "legitimate right to resistance [euphemism for terror] for as long as "the occupation" is sustained, debkafile's Middle East sources disclose. The draft was drawn up as part of the Mubarak government's effort to broker the reconciliation of the Palestinian Hamas and Fatah. Israeli security sources say it is the most anti-Israeli document penned in many years.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report September 22, 2008
After Italian and Arab media reported that 2 Israelis were in the group of tourists kidnapped in the Aswan region of S. Egypt, the Egyptian tourism minister announced Monday, Sept. 22, that eleven tourists were snatched - 5 Germans, 5 Italians and one Romanian national. He made no mention of Israelis. The Israeli embassy in Cairo has been asked to check this.
Some sources report that the victims were transferred to Sudan, where debkafile's counter-terror sources disclose that Hizballah and Iranian intelligence networks are rife. They enjoy the protection of the Sudanese ruler, Gen. Bashir who recently signed military and intelligence accords with Iran granting Hizballah permission to operate in his country.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report September 10, 2008
Egyptian foreign minister Ahmed Abu Ghait met secretly with Hizballah leaders in Beirut last week, DEBKA file's counter-terror sources report, and invited a delegation to pay a formal visit to Cairo. This is a stab in the back for Israeli prime minister Ehud Olmert, defense minister Ehud Barak and their policy of heavy reliance on Egyptian mediation for holding down Hamas aggression from the Gaza Strip and securing the release of the kidnapped Israeli soldier Gilead Shalit.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report August 31, 2008
debkafile's military sources report that a new 11-point scheme, just developed by Saudi King Abdullah and Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak, provides for the bulk of the 3,000-strong force to be Egyptian. It will be presented to Israeli defense minister Ehud Barak Tuesday, Aug. 26.
When Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice's arrives in Jerusalem and Ramallah, Sunday, Aug. 24, she will find this plan already on the table.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report August 29, 2008
debkafile's intelligence and counter-terror sources disclose that Egypt's interior ministry's security forces, airports, harbors, and border terminals were placed on the highest terror alert Sunday afternoon, Aug. 24, in response to information that an al Qaeda team or teams were heading for major strikes against specific targets.
Extra guards were posted at the American, Israeli, Swedish and British embassies.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report July 7, 2008
debkafile's military sources report that last week, Israel's negotiator Ofer Dekel returned from Cairo empty-handed. Prospects for the release of Gilead Shalit, two years after his abduction in a cross border raid from Gaza, had receded and, two weeks after it went into effect, the Gaza truce accord was back on the table.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report May 22, 2008
debkafile's Middle East sources point to disturbing policy contradictions in Israel's handling of the Palestinian Hamas. Ahead of French foreign minister Bernard Kouchner's arrival Tuesday, May 20, Jerusalem asked France to clarify the contacts made by an emissary with Hamas officials.
At the same time, prime minister Ehud Olmert has approved indirect Gaza truce negotiations via Cairo with the Palestinian fundamentalists.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report May 22, 2008
debkafile's military source counted four armed Hamas assaults on the Gaza-Israel border fence Tuesday, May 20. They were made to press the Palestinian group's truce terms and demand for 350 jailed terrorists "with blood on their hands" as the price for kidnapped Israeli solder Gilead Shalit's freedom.
In Cairo, Egyptian go-betweens laid out Israel's terms for a ceasefire deal to the Hamas team from Damascus as presented by defense minister Ehud Barak Monday, May 19, to Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak and intelligence minister Gen. Omar Suleiman at Sharm el-Sheik.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report May 18, 2008
Egyptian intelligence minister Gen. Omar Suleiman Monday, May 12, presented the truce plan he negotiated with Hamas leaders in Cairo to Israel's prime minister Ehud Olmert, defense minister Ehud Barak and foreign minister Tzipi Livni.
debkafile's sources report they essentially accepted the offer with some caveats and agreed to treat kidnapped Israeli soldier Gilead Shalit as a separate issue. The deal calls on Israel to end its blockade on the Gaza Strip and accept Egyptian guarantees to stop arms smuggling through Sinai.
debkafile's military sources accuse prime minister Olmert of surrendering to Hamas in the same way as Lebanon's Siniora yielded to Hizballah.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report April 21, 2008
They are armed and driving around in four pickups preparatory to carrying out attacks, say Egyptian officials. Israeli Passover holidaymakers have been warned from Jerusalem of mortal danger from terrorists at the Sinai resorts popular with Israelis. The small numbers who entered through the Taba crossing for the festival which begins next Saturday were advised to leave without delay.
DEBKAfile Exclusive Report April 15, 2008
debkafile's military sources report that, following the Palestinian attack on the Israel-Gaza border fuel terminal that supplies its own population, Hamas plans a mass protest Thursday, April 10 against the "Israeli and Egyptian blockade" of the Gaza Strip. Our sources report that a tough Egyptian message put Hamas off its plan for another attempt to smash through the Gaza border to Egyptian Sinai.