Is Egypt Planning a Second Round?
A Key Sector of the Arab-Israel Cold War
Fifteen months have now gone by since Egypt—the first of the Arab League countries to negotiate with the new Jewish state—signed an armistice with Israel at Rhodes. The agreement defined a temporary frontier between the two states, and established a no-man’s-land between their armies. More important, it broke the semblance of Arab unity which had marked the invasion of Palestine on May 15, 1948. It appeared reasonable to hope that, given time and opportunity, Egypt would continue to move gradually towards normal relations with her new neighbor. Instead, however, Egypt is in the forefront of the fresh diplomatic offensive which the Arab states are waging against Israel, and, at this writing, her fighting forces are being rearmed on a hitherto unprecedented scale.
Does this portend a fresh attack on Israel by Egypt which would, willy-nilly, involve the other Arab states? Or is Egypt merely going through the motions of rearming to satisfy her wounded pride and to regain lost prestige and influence in the Arab world?
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