In addition to having diplomats facing arrest warrants in England and Germany, Mossad agents being arrested in Poland at Germany’s behest and kicked out of England; diplomatic relations broken with one country and severely strained with its two best allies, Israel is looking at more international punishment for its boneheaded moves.
[tweetmeme] In response to the Flotilla disaster (in which 9 Turkish civilians were killed), activists and MPs in Egypt are calling for the arrest of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and DM Ehud Barak (a call that started in May in response to the Goldstone Report). Egyptians have been growing increasingly uncomfortable with their government’s cooperation on the siege of Gaza. Unrest started in Egypt during the 2008/2009 Israeli Cast Lead operation that left over 1400 Palestinians dead and continues today in the aftermath of the Flotilla attack. Particularly telling of the contradictory policies of the Egyptian government is the indefinite opening of the Rafah crossing into Gaza.
In other news, Ireland is set to expel the top Mossad agent in the country in response to the Israeli use of fraudulent Irish passports in the botched al-Mabhouh assassination earlier this year. The move is largely symbolic, but England and Australia have made similar moves in recent weeks.
These two new bits of evidence show a Europe that is increasingly fed up with Israeli intransigence (Israeli diplomats face arrest in 2 countries and Mossad agents face arrest in 2 others). The Egyptian public could be a larger problem for Israel. If the Egyptian government can be pressured into taking serious steps against Israel, the Jewish state could find itself completely isolated in the region (Israel’s other ally, Jordan, has already had some harsh words).
In 2006, a poll found that 92% of Egyptians viewed Israel as an enemy and this figure has presumably grown after Cast Lead and the Flotilla. Meanwhile, earlier this year, the Egyptian FM implied that Egypt would side with Lebanon and Syria in a future war with Israel. There is little chance of the Israeli diplomats being arrested in Egypt (largely thanks to the, ahem, ‘democratic’ political system led by President Mubarak), but the crowing of the Egyptian public will only continue. One thing is for sure: Israel desperately needs an image makeover.
Photo from the Coto Report