I wasn’t going to talk about this, but I object when “leftist” blogs echo right-wing propaganda.
For example, the corporate media outlets say that last Friday (24 Nov 2017) a group of gunmen attacked the Sufi al-Rawda mosque in the town of Bir al-Abed, Egypt, killing and wounding many people. Each source gives a different number of victims.
Western governments and their allies are blaming the attack on “ISIS,” which is perhaps correct, since there is reason to believe it was done by mercenaries paid by the Egyptian government. That is, there are indications it was a false flag perpetrated by the Egyptian and Israeli governments as a pretext for exterminating Bedouin insurgents in the Sinai area. Almost immediately after the mosque attack, Egypt’s military started bombarding the mountainous area around Bir al-Abed, annihilating every Bedouin encampment they could find. The bombardment continues today.
Bedouins live throughout North Africa and the Middle East. In Egypt there are about a million of them, mostly in the Sinai Area, plus the suburbs of Cairo. “Bedouin” means nomadic desert Arab, as opposed to settled Arabs who live in towns and cities.
During the last few decades, life has become increasingly hard for Bedouins. They are marginalized in whatever nation they are in, and they are chronically unemployed. In desperation they have started to marry outside their tribes, which was once unheard of. (Bedouins are tribal.)
Bedouins in the Sinai Peninsula did not benefit from the construction boom. Sudanese and Egyptian workers were brought in as construction laborers instead. When the tourist industry started to bloom, local Bedouins increasingly moved into new service positions such as cab drivers, tour guides, and cafe managers. However the competition is very high, and many Sinai Bedouins are unemployed. Since there are not enough employment opportunities, many Bedouin tribes are involved in inter-border smuggling of drugs and weapons.
Which means they are hated by Israelis and regular Arabs alike.
In most Middle Eastern nations the Bedouin have no land rights, only users’ privileges, especially in Egypt. Since the mid-1980s, the Bedouins who held desirable coastal property have lost control of much of their land as the Egyptian government seized it and sold it to hotel operators.
The Egyptian and Israeli military regularly bulldoze Bedouin encampments in Egypt and Israel, which keep reappearing, only to be bulldozed again. In recent years the desperate Bedouins have been fighting back by bombing tourist hotels, Egyptian police stations, and oil pipelines in the Sinai area. One hotel bombing on 7 Oct 2004 killed 18 Egyptians and 12 Israelis. The goal was to hurt the tourism industry, and to some extent it worked.
Unemployed and marginalized Bedouins resent rich tourists who enjoy luxury hotels in Egypt. They especially resent Israeli and Christian tourists, since Bedouins feel that the latter consider Bedouins to be lower life forms.
The Bedouins have done such attacks for years, while the corporate media outlets blame them on whatever name they choose. (Al Qaeda, ISIS, Hamas, etc, etc.) The Bedouins also have repeatedly bombed the 750 mile-long Arab Gas Pipeline, plus the Egypt Gas Pipeline, which export Egyptian natural gas to Jordan, Syria, Lebanon, and Israel.
From 2011 to March 2012, the gas supply to Israel and Jordan was stopped by 13 separate attacks on GASCO’s feeder pipeline by Bedouins complaining of economic neglect and discrimination by the central Cairo government.
After the military coup in Egypt (3 July 2013) the Bedouins felt more marginalized than ever by the new government, and they increased their attacks accordingly.
However last Friday’s attack on the Sufi al-Rawda did not fit the Bedouin pattern. The Bedouins bomb pipelines and occasionally hotels that have rich guests. In September they killed 18 policemen in a convoy near al-Arish in the Sinai region. The Bedouins would know that attacking civilians in a crowded mosque would turn all Egypt against them more fiercely than ever. Therefore it is reasonable to presume that the Egyptian and Israeli governments hired mercenaries to do the attack. And since “ISIS” consists of paid mercenaries, the media are correct to blame “ISIS.”
On 31 Oct 2016 a bomb exploded aboard Metrojet Flight 9268, which was full of tourists (219 Russians, four Ukrainians, and one Belarusian – all dead). Most of the passengers were women. Seventeen were children. The plane was over the Sinai Peninsula. This too may have been a false flag, used as a pretext to crush the Bedouins. And now with last Friday’s attack, the Egyptian government has a pretext to exterminate all Bedouins in Egypt once and for all.
And since the media are calling them “ISIS,” the USA has an added pretext to continue its Global War of Terror.