By: Prof. Dr. Walid ‘Abd al-Hay.
(Exclusively for al-Zaytouna Centre).
The Israeli political elite realize Egypt’s centrality in the Arab regional system and that it is the most capable of directing Arab strategic policies, regardless the orientation, as was evident in the Nasserist era, then the transformation in the Sadat stage, reaching to the gradual decline of Egypt during the Mubarak era to the current stage. Perhaps the Egyptian-Israeli “peace” treaty was the key for other Arab countries to join the stage of accelerated normalization. Yoram Peri, political advisor to former Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, expresses this perception saying, “First of all is the position of Egypt within the region. For four millennia, Egypt was the leading power in the region and the source of all the waves that took place in the region from Islamism, Socialism, Pan-Arabism, Salafist Terrorism, even to modern cinema and the peace with Israel. And the question is what path will Egypt take? Will it continue to be a leader? Or as some people say, will it withdraw to domestic issues and a more introspective approach?”
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Based on this image in the Israeli strategic mind as reflected in the Zionist political literature, and based on the stages of its clash with Egypt since 1948 until now, Israel suggests four possibilities for the future of Egypt and explores their implications. These possibilities are:
1. Egypt is a strong country with a weak president.
2. Egypt is a strong country with a strong president.
3. Egypt is a weak country with a strong president.
4. Egypt is a weak country with a weak president.
For Israel, the second possibility is the worst and must be prevented, while the fourth is the preferred and must be perpetuated by all possible means.
The Egyptian forces that can move Egypt from one possibility to another are:
1. The military institution: If we exclude the brief period of Mohamed Morsi, Egypt has been subject to military rule for about 68 consecutive years.
2. The Egyptian opposition, especially the Islamic Movement with the Muslim Brothers (MB) movement being its mainstay, whose strength was evident in the Egyptian street in the results of the presidential election in 2013, but was unable to stay in power.
3. The Egyptian economic situation which has been weak in most periods.
In addition to these local factors in Egypt, Israel is aware of the need to preoccupy the country with regional problems that confuse its strategic planning. Israel is also aware that it needs to provide conditions for such problems and employ them, such as the repercussions of the construction of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam on Egyptian water security, the outbreak of war in Libya and the conflict within the Sudanese military establishment, not to mention the permanent tension on the border with Gaza Strip, which makes the 2,665 kilometers land borders of Egypt unstable.
As for Egypt’s international position during 2013-2022, and based on ten central indicators, this position has declined as follows:
1. There are six negative indicators compared to four positive ones. Here, we must pay attention to the measurement of indicators as in some indicators, an increase in the recorded number or the recorded value is evidence of a negative trend while in others an increase in the number is positive evidence, which is something that must be considered in measurement models.
2. According to several studies on “indicator weights,” the weights were divided from 1-3 according to the criteria for determining the weight on the Likert scale, with the need to pay attention to the mutual influence between the ten central indicators, and even the overlap in some sub-indicators.
3. The negative indicators in 2022 were represented in:
• Democracy: It decreased from 4.56 points on a scale of ten to 2.93 points.
• Gini index which measures the extent to which the distribution of income (or, in some cases, consumption expenditure) among individuals or households within an economy deviates from a perfectly equal distribution: It increased from 28.3 to 32.1.
• The government debt ratio to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) increased from 87.1% to 88%.
• Poverty rate based on spending less than $5.5 per day per person increased from 67.7% to 72.6%.
• Corruption: Transparency decreased from 37 to 30 points.
• Crime: Crime rate per 100 thousand increased from 2.55 to 5.17.
In contrast to these negative indicators, there are four positive indicators:
1. Political stability: Egypt remained within the circle of negativity in terms of instability, but this negativity declined from –1.63 to -1.02, meaning that instability remained significant with an improvement not exceeding 34%. This made Egypt rank very low, at 164 out of 194 countries despite marginal improvement.
2. Per capita income improved from $3,263 to $3,876, an increase of about $61 annually. However, this increase becomes without value when linked to poor income distribution and poverty rate.
3. The percentage of spending on scientific research increased from 0.64 to 0.96 of GDP, which is a positive indicator although it is not commensurate with the global level which reached 2.63.
4. The ratio of military spending to GDP decreased from 1.61% to 1.22%.
Based on these indicators, and after adopting weights, the results were as follows in the overall picture of Egypt:
1. Egypt ranks 152 out of 180 countries, with a total score of 48.9 out of 100, based on the ten central indicators and the ten-year trend.
2. The overall result of the total positive and negative indicators, taking into account the weights of the indicators, is that the international standing of Egypt has declined in the post-military coup period to day, at 62.6%.
In comparison with our results, we find another specialized study that measures the Egyptian situation in 2022 based on 16 indicators. These indicators cover three dimensions:
1. Governance (measured by 4 indicators).
2. Economic transformation (7 indicators).
3. Political transformation (5 indicators).
The study ended with the following results:
1. Governance: Its average was 3.77 out of 10, and it ranked 108 out of 137 countries (countries with less than one million inhabitants were excluded from the measurement).
2. Political transformation: It scored 3.77 out of 10 and ranked 114 out of 137 countries.
3. Economic transformation: It scored 4.89 points out of 10 and ranked 82 out of 137.
If we divide states in terms of power into five levels; great powers, strong, medium, weak and very weak states, Egypt falls into the category of weak states, which is an appropriate situation for the Israeli strategy.
There is no doubt that this situation is known by the Israeli decision-making institutions, and things get gloomier when considering how the Israeli intellectual elites view the current Egyptian leadership, which could be summed up as follows:
1. Egypt is moving quietly towards re-Pharaonization (as evidenced by the architecture of New Cairo or the new Administrative Capital), and increasing its connection to the Mediterranean. An inclination founded by a number of Egyptian thinkers led by Taha Hussein.
2. There is a wide gap between President al-Sisi’s political discourse and his achievements, especially on the economic level.
3. Continued tension between the residents of the Sinai desert and the government authority, with sporadic incidents occurring from time to time.
4. The dominance of authoritarianism over the policies of President al-Sisi.
5. Harmony between the Egyptian and Israeli policies in terms of weakening Hamas’s authority in Gaza Strip and strengthening and expanding the role of the Palestinian Authority.
In light of the above data, Israeli studies seek to determine the nature of future relations between the Egyptian and Israeli sides.
Future Relations Scenarios From an Israeli Perspective
The Optimistic Scenario
In a study by Ofir Winter, a research fellow at the Israeli Institute for National Security Studies (INSS) at Tel Aviv University, Winter focuses on the following considerations that he perceives as having a positive significance in future Egyptian-Israeli relations:
1. Economic considerations:These are represented in several determinants:
• The joint pursuit of Egyptian-Israeli cooperation with the European Commission to transfer gas from the eastern Mediterranean to European markets, a need that became more urgent after the market turmoil, due to the European economic sanctions on Russia, which was the main source of European gas.
• Developing the Nitzana crossing between Egypt and occupied Palestine. According to the Israeli Economy and Industry Ministry the “two countries are targeting annual trade (excluding tourism and natural gas exports) at about $700 million by 2025, up from about $300 million in 2021.” It is noted that the trade between Egypt and Israel has witnessed clear fluctuation, where “Israel’s exports to Egypt were insignificant in the first decade of trade relations, standing at $20–50 million a year between 1994 and 2005, or less than 0.1 per cent of total exports.” However, the Qualifying Industrial Zone (QIZ) agreement made Israeli exports jump to $200 million in 2011 (0.3–0.4% of Israel’s total exports), but after the turmoil during the Arab Spring, exports declined to less than $90 million in 2017.
In contrast, Egyptian exports to Israel were much higher. In 1996, they amounted to about $350 million, mostly oil ($325 million, and the rest was other commodities). The matter changed radically since 2003 when the sale of oil to Israel almost stopped while the export of other commodities increased reaching more than $230 million in 2011 but has begun to decline to around $50 million since 2012.
The latest shooting operation carried out by an Egyptian police officer on 3/6/2023, may have negative impact, for it took place in the same area set to expand trade between the two countries.
• Investing in the bad economic situation in Egypt: According to the Israeli vision, the Egyptian dependence on Gulf aid, the extreme poverty rate reaching 30% and the continuous decline in the value of the Egyptian pound are factors that pressure Egypt to rely on Israel in this respect as much as possible.
• Egypt believes that the rapprochement with Israel boosts US support of the Egyptian economy, whether regarding financial aid, facilitating access to loans or exempting Egypt from some restrictions and policies of blockade imposed on some countries. Accordingly, Egyptian political elites believe that Israel is a gateway to access the US coffers, for Israel could lobby US institutions for the support of Egypt.
The continuation of negotiations between Egypt and Israel to expand the QIZ area, the organization of direct regular flights between Tel Aviv and Sharm el-Sheikh and the continuation of visits between their ministers.
2. Growing mutual trust between the political and security levels on both sides: Eran Lerman of the Jerusalem Institute for Strategy and Security (JISS) notes that such trust is reflected in the friendly behavior of Egyptian President Abdul Fattah al-Sisi towards Israeli officials, such as changing his course during a conference in Cairo in February 2022 to shake hands with Israeli Minister Karine Elharrar, which was gushed about by the Israeli press, and allowing an Israeli orchestra in May 2022 to perform a concert in Cairo on the occasion of Israel’s “Independence Day,” reinforce this atmosphere of trust.
3. Security cooperation: Lerman also reveals that there is security cooperation between Egypt and Israel against some Islamic organizations, or even some of Turkey’s policies. Also, the widening Arab normalization and Abraham Accords have strengthened the Egyptian policies towards Israel and eased the official Arab pressure on Egypt.
4. Climate cooperation between Egypt and Israel reinforces the optimistic scenario, where the two live the same climate conditions and their coordination in this field benefits both of them, whether concerning green energy, sea and land pollution, floods in coastal cities, biodiversity on land and sea, water and food security, desertification and natural disasters such as floods and fires.
5. The percentage of Egyptian youth who do not mind normalization with Israel is increasing, which will strengthen of bilateral relations, however, the proponents of this scenario realize at the same time that the public’s rejection of normalization with Israel is still high in Egypt. A poll conducted by the Washington Institute for Near East Policy in August 2022 revealed that 85% of the Egyptian society did not support normalization with Israel, and 82% did not feel the feasibility of “peace” with it. The poll also showed that there were no statistically significant differences between the Egyptian generations, which means that the change in these trends is not imminent. Accordingly, this Israeli current believes it is necessary to invest in the difficult economic situation in Egypt as the same poll found that 85% of the Egyptians were pessimistic regarding the economy of their country, which paves the way for exploiting such feeling in the hope to change Egyptian popular trends regarding Israel.
The Pessimistic Scenario
Proponents of this scenario rely on several indicators:
1. The popular rejection of normalization with Israel will not change. Forty-four years after the Egyptian-Israeli peace treaty, the Egyptian conscience still clings to hostility and mistrust regarding Israel. Besides Islamic and national orientations, this “peace” has not genuinely affected the society. The proponents of this scenario think that most Egyptian elites still believe that Israel is conspiring against the Arabs and Muslims, especially in Egypt. Israeli supporters of this trend believe that although Egyptian President Anwar Sadat asserted in his 1977 Knesset speech that the psychological barrier constituted 70% of the problem in the relationship with Israel, this percentage is currently the same and even increasing.
2. Israel is still falling short of security and intelligence cooperation that started in 1979 with Egypt, and which has been concentrating mainly on the Sinai area, overlooking Palestinian activities in Gaza Strip (destroying tunnels and flooding them with water, obstructing commercial movement and the movement of individuals from the Strip, or continuing communication between Egyptian and Israeli security officials). This cooperation is still less than required, hence we find 16 countries, including Israel, require a prior security approval from Egyptians in order to let them into their countries. Thus, most Egyptians heading to Israel are diplomats, Christian pilgrims or journalists trusted by the Egyptian security services. Moreover, and in light of the latest shooting operation we referred to above, the levels of bilateral security coordination are expected to be reviewed.
3. There are segments in the Egyptian society that believe that Israel contributes to the unrest in the countries neighboring Egypt. The signs in this respect have appeared clearly with Ethiopia’s proposal for the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) project, which Egypt perceives as a strategic threat from various aspects, such as water resources, the impact on the High Dam, river navigation, fish wealth, agricultural area and the possibilities of weakening the geological layers facing earthquakes in that region.
4. The educational curricula, especially in schools, still paint a negative image of the Jews and their attitudes towards Egypt, by including Islamic religious texts and historical events that portray “Jews” as a “historic enemy” of Egypt, a recurring theme in various Egyptian media outlets as well. This means that these students who end up joining the army (reserve or permanent) would fuel hostility against Israel within the army, which has an significant role in decision-making in Egypt. All of this indicates that the military establishment and government bureaucracy may have anti-West culture, including Israel. Indeed, the intellectual and cultural elites are the pillars of obstructing rapprochement with Israel. The proponents of this scenario believe that the Egyptian intellectual elites who tackle “Jewish” or Hebrew cultural heritage (literature, language and art, as evidenced by the Egyptian spy TV series that present a picture of the dangerous Israeli spying on Egypt) are mostly opposed to the relationship with Israel, albeit with different levels of opposition. This is evident in the debate among Egyptian intellectuals regarding translating a Hebrew novel into Arabic, buying Hebrew books or allowing Hebrew publishing houses to participate in book fairs in Egypt. Some Egyptian intellectuals even believe that the idea behind the New Middle East concept is to ensure Israel’s control over the region and wrest its leadership from Egypt.
5. Despite what the optimistic scenario has stated concerning the Israeli-Egyptian gas cooperation and the repercussions of the Ukrainian crisis, proponents of the pessimistic scenario believe that with the growing international trend towards renewable energy sources, the dependence on gas will decline, which implies a decline in the importance of this variable in the medium and long term. This prompted researchers at the INSS to think about the integration between the resources available in the Sinai desert, especially solar energy, and the technical development in Israel in the field of renewable energy.
The Pendulum Scenario
This scenario is based on the pendulum theory, that is, the oscillation between optimism and pessimism with each having the potential for occurrence. So, this scenario is based on two hypotheses:
1. The bilateral Egyptian-Israeli relations are not isolated from regional and international developments, rather, they are equally affected by them if not more in certain circumstances. Accordingly, building scenarios must be on a broader basis than a perspective based on local variables only.
2. To determine the future of the Egyptian-Israeli relations, it is necessary to go beyond the spatial framework of interactions as there is a systematic need to build a cross impact matrix among the variables to determine the most influential and most affected ones, through the correlation coefficients.
Based on these two hypotheses, three researchers from the INSS, in cooperation with the American Middle East Institute, completed a study in 2021 related to the future of the Middle East in 2030. The three researchers tried to invest in the two hypotheses we referred to.
The study identified eight central indicators and the subsidiary results for each indicator, then scenarios for the Middle East region based on identifying the central indicators or drivers, and the interaction among the repercussions of the indicators on each other.
There are eight central indicators, each with its own consequences, as shown in the following table:
Determinants of the future of the Egyptian-Israeli relationship
|First: The decline of unipolarity in favor of bipolarity or multipolarity||1. Intensification of great power competition over the region.
2. Challenges of the existing international system.
3. US “Pivot to Asia” at the expense of the Middle East.
4. Chinese economic expansion.
5. The growing role of the Russian mediator between the regional powers.
|Some of these sub-indicators are beginning to emerge.|
|Second: Regional competition||1. The Iranian Shiite axis.
2. The Turkey-Qatar Islamist-oriented alliance.
3. The Saudi-Emirati status-quoaxis.
4. Possibilities of inter-camp cooperation.
|The current events indicate a relative decline in some of these indicators.|
|Third: Ideological volatility||1. The intractability of peaceful change.
2. Tendency towards radicalism and violence.
3. The emergence of new radical Islamic movements.
|Stability of these variables.|
|Fourth: Proliferation of dangerous technologies||1. Nuclear Proliferation.
2. Unregulated proliferation of precision-guided munitions (missiles and drones).
|Some of them have become reality.|
|Fifth: Growing demographic pressures||1. The population of the Middle East will be 581 million by 2030.
2. Increase of youth unemployment by 11%.
3. Five million children without schools.
|Based on linear projections.|
|Sixth: Societal and economic prospects||1. The serious relative lack of human capital.
2. Public’s faith in government institutions continues to decline.
3. Attempts at reforms are undercut by entrenched elites and ingrained practices.
4. Civil wars.
5. Inter-state conflicts.
|Megatrend based on the medium term.|
|Seventh: Environmental problems||1. The persistence of water scarcity.
2. Food shortages.
3. The persistence of displacement and refugee crisis.
4. Some areas in the Arab Gulf uninhabitable by 2050.
|Eighth: Rapid technological change||1. Advances in technologies such as AI will allow for deeper incursions by authoritarian regimes into the private lives of citizens (digital authoritarianism).
2. The increase of unmanned or even autonomous systems on future battlefields.
|Short term linear projection.|
Also, there is the low probability high impact variable (or black swan model) such as:
1. Leadership changes within existing regimes for any reason.
2. Military interventions by global/regional powers.
3. Sudden cessation or eruption of some military conflicts.
4. The increase of nuclear states in the region.
5. Technological developments that shift the balance of economic or military powers.
6. Deep-impact natural disasters.
Analytical model engines
The study established two drivers that have the most impact on the rest of the indicators:
1. US’s readiness to play a strong and shaping role in the region’s problems: It is the variable that controls the central indicators from 1 to 4 (see the table above) and determines the course of relations in the Middle East.
2. Socio-economic stability in MENA countries: This indicator controls indicators from 5 to 8 (see the table above) and may lead to more instability.
Based on these interactions, there are four scenarios for the region:
1. Deep US involvement in the relatively “stable” MENA region.
2. Deep US involvement in the “unstable” MENA region.
3. US disengagement from a relatively “stable” MENA region.
4. US disengagement from the “unstable” MENA region.
The study concludes with results that seem to have a fundamental impact on the Egyptian-Israeli relationship, the most important of which are:
1. Changes in the dynamics of great power competition in the Middle East might bring about significant changes in the structure of regional camps, which will not necessarily prove helpful for advancing Israel’s core national security interests. Indeed, Russia and China may compete over their interests in the region, which increases the confusion of the scene.
2. Abraham Accords might disintegrate quickly, which means a negative impact on the Egyptian-Israeli relationship.
3. Regime change in Iran does not guarantee that Tehran’s regional or nuclear ambitions will be curbed, which is what keeps the regional competition strong and Egypt may be part of. This can provoke conflict in the region given that the first priority on the Israeli national security agenda is to prevent nuclearization by any Middle Eastern country.
4. The economic deterioration may increase the weakness of the Arab countries, including Egypt, and may push them to internal conflicts that increase their exhaustion, which is what reduces the Israeli burden.
5. The political polarization in the US may reinforce the current trend represented in departing from US longstanding and fairly steady support for Israel, which means weakening the temptation for Egypt to get closer to Israel.
What we conclude from this study:
1. Egypt will not be an active force in shaping the Arab scene until 2030, which will make it less strategically valuable than in previous periods, and we have noticed that interest in Iran far exceeds interest in Egypt (without exaggeration) and Turkey together. Based on content analysis and measuring the number of reference times to the country then specifying the content of the reference through the context, the following is shown:
a. Iran was mentioned 46 times, and the reference to it was dominated by three topics: military and nuclear capabilities followed by the Shiite dimension in Iran’s regional relations and the Iranian international alliances.
b. Reference to Egypt was made 19 times with focus in the context on three issues: its economic situation, pressure on Hamas and finally the relationship with Africa, especially Ethiopia.
c. Turkey was mentioned 16 times with focus on cooperation in the field of oil and gas, then the Islamic dimension in Turkish politics, then Turkish-Russian relations.
d. Knowing that the number of sub-indicators for the study is 28, we realize the implications of measuring the number of times one country is mentioned, whether in presenting the indicators, building scenarios, or introducing the study, which indicates the degree of preoccupation of the mind of the Israeli decision-maker with the country.
2. The indicators of the optimistic scenario appear to be of a partial and circumstantial nature with focus on sub-trends, which is the same situation regarding the pessimistic scenario. In its final conclusions, the pendulum scenario is closer to the pessimistic scenario, especially in observing the megatrends.
3. We conclude from the context of the three scenarios that Israel views Egypt through the following approach:
a. It is better for Egypt to remain weak.
b. It is better for Egypt not to be strong except in the variables that enhance its relationship with Israel.
c. Dealing with international powers based on employing their relations with Egypt for the benefit of Israel, without employing Israel’s relations with them for the benefit of Egypt.
d. Working to change the knowledge system and the Egyptian popular sentiment towards Israel, given that the persistence of the negative image of Israel will keep the door open for the return of the conflict in case of a political change that brings with it an anti-Israel political movement.
The Egyptian-Israeli relationship involves a very complex Israeli problem. If Israel allows Egypt to become strong, this entails a great risk to Israel if forces hostile to Israel come to power in Egypt, and if it continues to work to interfere in a way that prevents Egypt’s recovery (by continuing to interfere in the recovery factors), this will strengthen the movements doubtful about the feasibility of the relationship with Israel, which may prompt the return of the conflict.
This means that the most appropriate Israeli strategy is indirect interference in the Egyptian local, regional and international environment, to prevent any disruption of the regional balance of power to the detriment of Israel. Also developing the Egyptian-Israeli relationship while remaining a non-zero one, which is the least costly strategy for Israel.
 An expert in futures studies, a former professor in the Department of Political Science at Yarmouk University in Jordan and a holder of Ph.D. in Political Science from Cairo University. He is also a former member of the Board of Trustees of Al-Zaytoonah University of Jordan, Irbid National University, the National Center for Human Rights, the Board of Grievances and the Supreme Council of Media. He has authored 37 books, most of which are focused on future studies in both theoretical and practical terms, and published 120 research papers in peer-reviewed academic journals.
 Israel After Egypt: Opportunities and Challenges for Peace, site of Middle East Institute, https://www.mei.edu/resources/transcript/israel-after-egypt-opportunities-and-challenges-peace
 Arash Beidollah Khani, “Egyptian–Israeli Relations, History, Progress, Challenges and Prospects in the Middle East,” Asian Journal of Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies, Vol. 7, No. 3, 2013, pp. 95-109 and 111-114.
 For more details on the environment of Egyptian political decision-making, see Michele Dunne, Egypt: Trends in Politics, Economics, and Human Rights, Testimony: U.S. House Subcommittee On The Middle East, North Africa, And International Terrorism, 9/9/2020, site of Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, https://carnegieendowment.org/2020/09/09/egypt-trends-in-politics-economics-and-human-rights-pub-82677; and Adel El-Adawy, “Egypt’s Multiple Power Centers,” PolicyWatch 2194, site of The Washington Institute for Near East Policy, 17/1/2014, https://www.washingtoninstitute.org/policy-analysis/egypts-multiple-power-centers
 Due to some discrepancy between the different sources (which is a limited discrepancy), and due to the lack of data for some years and the discrepancy in the number of sub-indicators, normalization was used in the statistics, and the following references were adopted: Most Democratic Countries, site of Wisevoter, https://wisevoter.com/country-rankings/most-democratic-countries; Democracy Index, site of Wikipedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Democracy_Index; GINI index (World Bank estimate) – Country Ranking, site of IndexMundi, https://www.indexmundi.com/facts/indicators/SI.POV.GINI/rankings; Political stability – Country rankings, site of TheGlobalEconomy.com, https://www.theglobaleconomy.com/rankings/wb_political_stability; Debt to GDP Ratio by Country 2023, site of World Population Review, https://worldpopulationreview.com/country-rankings/debt-to-gdp-ratio-by-country; Poverty headcount ratio at national poverty lines, site of The World Bank, https://data.worldbank.org/indicator/SI.POV.NAHC; Corruption Perceptions Index, site of Transparency International, https://www.transparency.org/en/cpi/2021?gclid=EAIaIQobChMI-uCfvaHl_gIVQrLVCh1wgw-nEAAYAiAAEgKwNvD_BwE; Crime Index by Country 2023, site of Numbeo.com, https://www.numbeo.com/crime/rankings_by_country.jsp; Research and development expenditure (% of GDP), The World Bank, https://data.worldbank.org/indicator/GB.XPD.RSDV.GD.ZS; and Military spending, percent of GDP – Country rankings, TheGlobalEconomy.com, https://www.theglobaleconomy.com/rankings/mil_spend_gdp/#:~:text=The%20average%20for%202021%20based,countries%20where%20data%20are%20available
 The Bertelsmann Stiftung’s Transformation Index-Egypt Country Report 2022. https://bti-project.org/en/reports/country-report/EGY
 Eran Lerman, Abdel Fattah Elsisi and the Re-Pharaonization of Egypt, site of The Jerusalem Strategic Tribune journal, May 2022, https://jstribune.com/lerman-re-pharaonization-of-egypt; Critical Neighbors: Egypt, Jordan, and the Israeli-Palestinian Arena, site of Israel Policy Forum, https://israelpolicyforum.org/critical-neighbors-egypt-jordan-and-the-israeli-palestinian-arena; and Egypt President Abdul Fattah al-Sisi: Ruler with an iron grip, site of British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC), 1/12/2020, https://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-19256730
 João de Oliveira Borralho, “Egyptian-Israeli Relations: Past, Present and Future in the Gaza Strip” (Master Thesis, Instituto Universitário de Lisboa, International Studies, September 2020), https://repositorio.iscte-iul.pt/bitstream/10071/21546/1/master_joao_oliveira_borralho.pdf; and Kenneth W. Stein, “Continuity and Change in Egyptian-Israeli Relations, 1973-97,” Israel Affairs journal, Vol. 3, Nos. 3&4, Spring/Summer 1997, https://ismi.emory.edu/documents/stein-publications/iasum97.pdf
 Israel’s burgeoning relationship with Egypt suggests brighter future for both countries, site of Jewish News Syndicate (JNS), 8/6/2022, https://www.jns.org/israels-burgeoning-relationship-with-egypt-suggests-brighter-future-for-both-countries; and Moomen Sallam and Ofir Winter, “Egypt and Israel: Forty Years in the Desert of Cold Peace,” Strategic Assessment journal, The Institute for National Security Studies (INSS), Vol. 20, No. 3, October 2017, https://www.inss.org.il/wp-content/uploads/2017/10/egypt-and-israel.pdf
 Israel, Egypt to boost economic ties, step up bilateral trade to $700m, site of The Times of Israel, 29/5/2022, https://www.timesofisrael.com/israel-egypt-to-boost-economic-ties-step-up-bilateral-trade-to-700m/
 Israeli-Egyptian Trade: In-Depth Analysis, site of Tony Blair Institute for Global Change, 15/10/2018, https://www.institute.global/insights/geopolitics-and-security/israeli-egyptian-trade-depth-analysis
 Haisam Hassanein, “The Future of Egyptian-Israeli Relations: Cairo More Committed to Peace Than Normalization,” The Washington Institute for Near East Policy, 18/2/2017, https://www.washingtoninstitute.org/policy-analysis/future-egyptian-israeli-relations-cairo-more-committed-peace-normalization
 In 1996, the US Congress established the Qualifying Industrial Zone (QIZ) initiative to support the Middle East peace process. The QIZs allow Egypt and Jordan to export products to the US duty-free as long as these products contain inputs from Israel. In December 2004, the Egyptian government signed the QIZ protocol with the US and Israel, which allows it to bring its goods into US exempted from customs duties. For details, see Israeli-Egyptian Trade: In-Depth Analysis, Tony Blair Institute for Global Change, 15/10/2018, https://www.institute.global/insights/geopolitics-and-security/israeli-egyptian-trade-depth-analysis
 About the stance on Egypt, see Eran Lerman, Egypt as the cornerstone of the Middle East’s new regional security architecture, The Jerusalem Institute for Strategy and Security (JISS), 9/8/2022, https://jiss.org.il/en/media-lerman-egypt-as-the-cornerstone; Efraim Inbar, Israeli, Egyptian leaders’ rare public meeting signals warming of relations, JISS, 30/9/2021, https://jiss.org.il/en/inbar-israeli-egyptian-leaders-rare-public-meeting; and Eran Lerman, Israeli general calls for closer cooperation with Egypt against Turkey, JISS, 11/11/2020, https://jiss.org.il/en/lerman-israeli-general-calls-for-closer-cooperation-with-egypt-against-turkey
 Israel swoons as Egypt’s Sissi gives Minister Elharrar a special summit welcome, site of The Times of Israel, 14/2/2022, https://www.timesofisrael.com/israel-swoons-as-egypts-sissi-gives-minister-elharrar-a-special-summit-welcome; WATCH: Egyptian President’s ‘Moving’ Gesture to Israeli Minister in Cairo, site of Haaretz newspaper, 15/2/2022, https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/2022-02-15/ty-article/watch-egyptian-presidents-moving-gesture-to-israeli-minister-in-cairo/0000017f-f1a4-d8a1-a5ff-f1ae52df0000; and Israel lauds Egyptian president’s gesture to disabled Israeli minister, site of Israel Hayom, 15/2/2022, https://www.israelhayom.com/2022/02/15/israel-lauds-egyptian-presidents-gesture-to-disabled-israeli-minister
 Israeli orchestra performs in Egypt for the first time in 40 years, The Times of Israel, 25/5/2022, https://www.timesofisrael.com/israeli-orchestra-performs-in-egypt-for-the-first-time-in-40-years/
 Moomen Sallam and Ofir Winter, “Egypt and Israel: Forty Years in the Desert of Cold Peace,” p. 25.
 Mohamed Abdelaziz, In New Poll, Most Egyptians Split on Relations with Foreign Powers, Pessimistic About Domestic Economy, The Washington Institute for Near East Policy, 9/9/2022, https://www.washingtoninstitute.org/policy-analysis/new-poll-most-egyptians-split-relations-foreign-powers-pessimistic-about-domestic
 Haisam Hassanein, “The Future of Egyptian-Israeli Relations: Cairo More Committed to Peace Than Normalization,” The Washington Institute for Near East Policy, 18/2/2017.
 Haisam Hassanein, “The Future of Egyptian-Israeli Relations: Cairo More Committed to Peace Than Normalization,” site of The Jerusalem Post newspaper, 19/2/2017, https://www.jpost.com/opinion/the-future-of-egyptian-israeli-relations-cairo-more-committed-to-peace-than-normalization-481938
 Haisam Hassanein, Egypt, Israel, and Nile Water Conspiracies, The Washington Institute for Near East Policy, 9/8/2021, https://www.washingtoninstitute.org/policy-analysis/egypt-israel-and-nile-water-conspiracies
 Israel decries Egyptian TV show ‘The End’ for predicting its destruction, site of Ahram Online, 29/4/2020, https://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/5/159/368112/Arts–Culture/Entertainment/Israel-decries-Egyptian-TV-show-The-End-for-predic.aspx; Nabil Mohamed, The Palestinian Cause in Egyptian Cinema, site of Fanack Foundation, 7/7/2022, https://fanack.com/egypt/culture-of-egypt/the-palestinian-cause-in-egyptian-cinema; and site of Reviews in History, https://reviews.history.ac.uk/review/264
 Ofir Winter, Egypt and Israel: Renewable Energies for Peace, INSS Insight No. 1572, 14/3/2022, https://www.inss.org.il/publication/israel-egypt-climate-change; and Asaf Siniver and Gerasimos Tsourapas, Middle Powers and Soft-Power Rivalry: Egyptian–Israeli Competition in Africa, Foreign Policy Analysis journal, Vol. 19, Issue 2, April 2023, https://academic.oup.com/fpa/article/19/2/orac041/6994094
 Ari Heistein, Daniel Rakov and Yoel Guzansky, What Will the Middle East look like in 2030? An Israel Perspective, Middle East Institute, 1/3/2021.
 For details on the discussions of the Israeli elites regarding dealing with the region, especially Egypt, and the “Israeli strategic confusion” to determine the most appropriate plan to interact with the region, see Israel After Egypt: Opportunities and Challenges for Peace, site of Middle East Institute, https://www.mei.edu/resources/transcript/israel-after-egypt-opportunities-and-challenges-peace
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