The context is stretched after announcing charges against 44 people including 19 Americans and other foreigners, accused of illegal funding of nongovernmental organizations operating in Egypt. Washington sent in Cairo its highest ranking army officer, General Martin Dempsey, for talks with the head of the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (AFSC), Marshal Hussein Tantawi.
"General Dempsey spoke with Marshal Tantawi and his Egyptian counterpart Sami Anan a number of topics related to the security relationship between our two countries have long enjoyed, including the issue of U.S. NGOs," said the door speaker of General American, Colonel Dave Lapan, in an email to AFP. However, he did not provide further details.General Dempsey had planned a roundtable with reporters after his talks, but it was canceled without explanation.
Among the NGOs targeted by lawsuits are U.S. organizations National Democratic Institute (NDI), International Republican Institute (IRI) and Freedom House, and the German Konrad Adenauer Foundation. They were the subject of searches end in December on charges of illegal foreign funding. According to one of the magistrates in charge of the case, Sameh Abu-Zeid, these associations are accused of having acted "without authorization" to conduct "purely political activities unrelated to work with civil society."
Considered the cause of action, the Minister of International Cooperation, Fayza Abul-Naga, blows hot and cold. Having said Saturday she did not think that a "secondary matter" of this kind could "affect the future of relations between Egypt and America," she accused, Monday 13, the United States of want to "influence the course of the Egyptian revolution to serve their own interests and those of Israel."
Some U.S. lawmakers have warned their side that these actions could jeopardize the aid of about $ 1.3 billion that the U.S. provides annually to Egypt, the centerpiece of their policy in the region.
In Cairo, analysts tend rather to minimize the scope of this crisis is not unprecedented.Abdel-Moneim Said, former director of the Center for Political and Strategic Studies (CEPS) Al-Ahram, said the campaign in terms of triangular conflict involving the U.S. government, the revolutionaries and the Military Council. "Within the U.S. administration, there are those who are enthusiastic in their support of the Arab revolutions. They support the revolutionaries who want to accelerate the transition process and are pushing in this direction on the army, "he says.
The other two sides of the triangle, namely the revolutionaries and the Military Council, Saeed said that the first, after experiencing an electoral defeat, began to claim an early transition of power to a civilian authority, while directing their criticism at the Military Council. The latter responded with their "revelations" on dubious sources of funding revolutionaries and organizations that defend them.
Regarding the impact of these strains in bilateral relations with the United States, Said believes that "since and Barack Obama up through George W. Bush, U.S. administrations have developed the habit of highlighting the issue of aid, notably to protest against the conditions of human rights in Egypt, or against the cold peace with Egypt qu'entretient Israel. " However, today as yesterday, none of the cases considered crucial by both countries is at stake "For critical issues, means peace with Israel, the security of the Suez Canal and cooperation in countering terrorism "says the researcher.
Chairman of the Department of Political Science at the American University in Cairo (AUC), Walid Kazziha share more or less the outline of the analysis of Said. "The idea is not that Egypt snubs U.S. aid, but she is well aware of pressure tactics that can operate at any time. The Egyptians know they are paying the price of these aids in terms of strategic assistance to the United States on aspects of Iran, Israel and , or in the war against terrorism, "said the professor.
"The increasing pressures, domestic and foreign, carried on the Military Council for it to reduce its political and economic role and its commitment to respect freedom led him to adopt a tight screw-à-vis the U.S. administration. The idea is to define a red line for the Americans and Europeans. A line they must not exceed, "he adds.
Kazziha says the problem lies more in the U.S. Congress that the Obama administration. It highlights the futility of official discourse, suggesting conspiracies and secret agents."Congress still exploits our weakness, that of democracy and human rights, often for other political purposes. His tools of pressure are known, they are the same for years. From there to talk about a conspiracy! It is a petty discourse that tries to ease the pressure of American popular. But muzzling the activists in Egypt, "he concludes.