For years, the Egyptians have been strongly condemning
The Israeli barrier was built with the chief goal of halting suicide bombings and other terror activities against Israelis. The Egyptian fence, on the other hand, is being constructed to stop Palestinians living in the Gaza Strip from entering
Many Palestinians can still understand why
By keeping the border crossings shut and now building the metal wall along the border with the Gaza Strip, Mubarak is in fact sending the Palestinians to knock on
The millions of dollars that are being invested in the construction of the new wall could have built hospitals and schools and created job opportunities for the Palestinians of the Gaza Strip. Half a billion dollars could even have solved the severe housing crisis in that area.
The Palestinians are not asking Mubarak to open the border so that they could move to live in
Even worse, the Egyptians often prevent medical and humanitarian aid from entering the Gaza Strip through this border crossing. And in many instances they have also banned human rights activists and missions of solidarity from entering the Gaza Strip to support the Palestinians.
Mubarak is using Hamas’s presence in government as an excuse to build the metal wall. But the truth is that Hamas poses a threat to
If Hamas really were such a big threat to
The Egyptians initially denied reports about the construction of their wall, but were forced to backtrack in light of pictures showing the bulldozers and laborers on the Egyptian side.
The new Egyptian fence is actually a 10-kilometer underground metal wall that cost at least $500 million. Experts are skeptical about the effectiveness of the project. They note that Palestinians involved in the smuggling industry along the border between the Gaza Strip and
If anything, the Egyptian wall is likely to escalate tensions in the Gaza Strip, where many Palestinians already feel that they are living in a big prison.
The ironic part is that Palestinian Authority president Mahmoud Abbas is now defending
Khaled Abu Toameh
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