A Lawless Haven for Jihadists in Sinai

(Washington Post) Editorial - After years of growing restlessness among its mostly Bedouin population, Egyptian state authority in the Sinai melted away after last year's revolution, during which police posts were burned and left empty. Sinai has been infiltrated by Islamic militants, including veterans of fighting in Pakistan and Afghanistan. The Egyptian army said Monday that Sunday's attack was backed up with mortar fire from Gaza. Perhaps some of the U.S. military aid now being misdirected into Egyptian purchases of F-16s and other weapons systems should be repurposed to support what will be a difficult and prolonged campaign to restore order in Sinai. Egyptian forces could benefit from training in counterinsurgency and from better surveillance and intelligence equipment. A takeover of Sinai by Islamic extremists could quickly destabilize what for the last three decades has been a border vital to the preservation of Middle East peace.

2012-08-07 00:00:00

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