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Helmi al-Asmar

Reconciliation is the only option for Egypt

Israel analysts still believe the Egyptian army to be a worthy adversary [AFP]

Date of publication: 9 April, 2015

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Comment: Egyptians must unite to prevent the country falling apart and see its proud army fall into the abyss of a fabricated "war on terrorism", says Helmi al-Asmar.

Civil wars always lead to national reconciliation. Painful incidents become a part of the past, regardless of the cruelties and tragedies that were involved.

The difference between one civil war and another is the conviction and astuteness the wise employ to reduce the suffering on the people.

Events in Egypt since the Arab Spring have left painful wounds and the country remains tense and at a deadlock.

This deadlock will ensure more wounds are inflicted. And Egypt's past provides a stark warning about this.

The Israeli newspaper, Maariv, recently published a report on threats to Israel. It said Iran, Syria, Hizballah and al-Qaeda were sources of "concern", but not serious threats.

Indeed, it concluded that the Egyptian army had remained unaffected by the country's political instability and was the only force that could confront Israel. 

However, this army is becoming increasingly pressed into situations that can only be solved politically.

Current events in Sinai and some parts of Upper Egypt resemble the Algerian civil war, which raged for a decade, cost hundreds of thousands of lives and was only solved through national reconciliation.

Egypt does not need to experience its own "Black Decade". It will not be in anyone's interest for the Egyptian army to sink into the mud of a fabricated "war on terrorism".

Preserving Egypt and its army is not only in the national interest but also that of the pan-Arab cause.

It must opt for unity, dialogue and understanding. Following this path will preserve the lives of Egyptians and confront the dangers that beset the Arabs from all sides.

This article is an edited translation from our Arabic edition.

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