Gates on urgent mission to Cairo as military rulers lose grip
President Barack Obama Saturday, March 5, asked Defense Secretary Robert Gates to set out for Cairo without delay on an emergency mission as the unrest in Egypt veered out of control, debkafile's exclusive sources report from Washington. Friday night, thousands of protesters seized control of the headquarters Egyptian security police (Mahabis Namn El Dawla) in Alexandria, Cairo and the nearby 6 of October town, shutting down its operations across the country.
In the last hours, information reaching Washington indicated that control was slipping out of the hands of the Egyptian military junta ruling the country since Hosni Mubarak's overthrow; anti-American elements energized by Iran appeared to have strengthened their hold on the protest movement, causing deep concern in the White House.
The capture of the three Mahabis centers opened to disaffected elements the secret files on every political and military leader in the country, confidential information once accessible only to ex-intelligence minister Gen. Omar Suleiman before the uprising.
While the Obama administration has a better inside picture of Egypt's opposition groups than it has about Libya, intelligence is still inadequate about the shape of the local leadership of those groups and to whom they defer.
Last Wednesday, March 2, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton accused Iran of stirring the pot when she addressed the House Appropriations Committee: "They (the Iranians) are using Hizballah… to communicate with counterparts… in (the Palestinian movement) Hamas who then in turn communicate with counterparts in Egypt," she said.
debkafile's sources report that large sums of Iranian petrodollars have reached the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood and radicalized its message to the Egyptian people. Military young leaders are believed to have executed a coup and displaced the veterans. The Palestinian Hamas has turned its well-oiled smuggling machine into a channel for transmitting Iranian cash to keep Egyptian Islamic extremists on the march.
The Israeli government is the only one in the region to show no concern about violent mayhem spurting up across its border, and has apparently shrugged off the key role played by the Palestinian rulers of Gaza in stirring up trouble in Egypt at Tehran's behest ,and the rising strength of the Muslim Brotherhood – both of which have a dangerous impact on Israeli security.