Summary of Editorials from the Hebrew Press

Three papers comment on various issues regarding events in Egypt:

Yediot Aharonot discusses the role of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt’s political future and asserts that US President „Obama believes that a democratic Middle East, in which Islamist parties (except those that support terrorism) have fair parliamentary representation, will uphold the peace agreements with Israel and make new agreements with it. Today, Arab rulers fear to recognize Israel because they are afraid of their own peoples but nobody has asked the people what they think.  Barack Obama is convinced that in a democratic milieu, the majority of Arab opinion will favor peace. If he is wrong, America is in trouble – and Israel is in bigger trouble.”
The Jerusalem Post writes that „Israel needs to prepare for a wide range of scenarios, including those of the worst-case variety. It’s time for some urgent catching up. Because our intelligence agencies failed to foresee the eruption of regional ferment, and most especially the Egyptian upheaval and its possible strategic fallout, we were caught unprepared, and not only in the military and diplomatic spheres. Our economy will also be significantly affected by what transpires south of the border in the coming months and years. Any injury to the peace with Egypt would trigger an economic tidal wave. This could be a destabilizing factor of critical proportions, and not merely because of the psychological insecurity that would be injected into our economy.”
Yisrael Hayom says that the Iranian regime would prefer to compare the current demonstrations in Egypt to those which occurred in Iran in 1979, not 2009.  However, the author notes that, „The Iranian population sees what is happening in Egypt and hears the support that the regime is voicing for the popular uprising,” and cautions that, „This could boomerang and encourage the Iranian people to protest against their regime.” The paper adds: „The fact that he Iranian regime has recently executed a record number of prisoners perhaps constitutes a reminder to the Iranian population: Do not compare what is happening in Egypt to what is happening in Iran. The message that the Iranian regime is trying to instill in its people is that Iranian people have already made their revolution and reached the goal of an Islamic state 30 years ago. Time will tell.”

Two papers refer to the decision to appoint Maj.-Gen. Benny Gantz as the next IDF Chief-of-Staff:Ma’ariv says that, „Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu decided – correctly – that the farce had to end as soon as possible and buried the idea of appointing a temporary Chief-of-Staff.”  The author avers that, „The only thing left to do now is hope that Gantz’s appointment passes smoothly and quickly.”
Haaretz comments: „Defense Minister Barak has decided to recommend Maj. Gen. Benny Gantz as IDF chief of staff with regrettable delay, in all probability under pressure from Netanyahu. Only after all the problematic alternatives were exhausted was Barak pushed into the correct choice, the appointment of a major general that is expected to be confirmed without difficulty. In this sequence of proceedings, Barak lost much of his military prestige, to say nothing of the political power he depleted by defecting from the Labor Party and establishing the Atzmaut faction. Politicians come and go, and so do governments. Without a stable IDF whose chain of command is distinguished by both its reliability and its capabilities, Israel would not exist. The Netanyahu-Barak government in recent months has betrayed its duty to provide security to the state’s citizens and leadership to their army.”