CAIRO: The main focus of the United States is to obtain a ceasefire between Israel and the Gaza Strip, U.S. State Department deputy spokeswoman Marie Harf said Friday.
She referenced an answer to the question of whether giving Israel additional military aid would prolong or worsen the ongoing conflict, asked during the Daily Press Briefing Thursday.
She also said the U.S. has a very longstanding, well-known military-to-military relationship with Israel.
Another question compared the situations in Gaza and Egypt, saying the American administration decided to continue to resupply ammunition to Israel despite civilian killings, but when a similar situation happened in Egypt during the dispersal of the Rabaa al-Adaweya and Nahda sit-ins the administration decided suspend the resupply.
Harf said in response, “We resupply allies and partners and friends that we have a military-to-military relationship with when there are requests to do so. That is an ongoing process and a fairly routine process.”
She added that the two situations are totally different as “Our relationship with Israel, our military-to-military relationship, is a very strong one and very different than the one with Egypt.”
“It’s not in any way breaking news to people that we have a very close security relationship with Israel and that we supply them with weapons. We talk about it very openly. That’s not new. That’s not a surprise to anyone,” Harf said during the Daily Press Briefing.
Some are skeptical of the American administration’s stance.
“Harf’s statements show the deep relation between the U.S. and Israel, and it’s not strange to say that their relation with them is stronger and totally different, because U.S. relations with Israel are actually incomparable with their relation to any other country.
The main problem is that the USA doesn’t want to admit that Egypt didn’t kill its own people, but was defending itself against terrorists,” Norhan Al-Shikh, manager of the American Research Center in the Faculty of Economics and Political Science, told The Cairo Post.
She added that this kind of relation enjoys special international privacy due to the military cooperation agreement and other causes including that the U.S. has the largest jewish community in the world after Israel itself.
Al-Shikh described the statements as an extension to the American policy concerning the June 30 demonstrations, and reflecting a blind backing to the Muslim Brotherhood.
“Obama just don’t want to admit that he failed in his bet on the Muslim Brotherhood,” she said.
The former Foreign Minister of Egypt Nabil Al-Araby refused to comment on Harf’s statements, telling The Cairo Post that he preferred not to comment on the issue.
The United States announced a suspension of military aid to Egypt in October 2013 after months of debates about its position on the crackdown on pro-Mohamed Morsi protesters. American ambassador to Egypt Anne W. Patterson was replaced shortly after June 30, as her term as ambassador ended, and since then diplomat David Satterfield was appointed.
Patterson was highly criticized by Egyptians for supporting the Brotherhood.
U.S.-Egypt relations started to improve after the election kf President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi. Secretary of State John Kerry voiced strong U.S. support for Egypt’s new president and signaled that Washington will continue the flow of military aid in an American welcome of the post-coup government according to the wall street journal last June.