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The Israel-Egypt-Hamas Triangle in the Sinai

The threat posed by Salafists and other jihadists in the northern Sinai has resulted in Hamas, Egypt and Israel recognizing their mutual interests.
A member of Hamas security forces stands guard in front of the closed gate of the Rafah crossing with Egypt, in the southern Gaza Strip May 17, 2013. Egyptian policemen blocked the crossing into the Gaza Strip on Friday to protest against the kidnapping of Egyptian security forces in the Sinai, witnesses and sources said. 
REUTERS/Ibraheem Abu Mustafa (GAZA - Tags: POLITICS) - RTXZQ8D
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In late July 2012, Ismail Haniyeh, the Hamas prime minister in Gaza, paid a visit to Cairo. He was quite proud of himself and pleased to be there. Mohammed Morsi, or Haniyeh's “Brother,” as the Palestinian called him, had just been elected president of Egypt. Haniyeh, like all the other leaders of Hamas, and in fact, all the people of Gaza, thought that this would be the dawn of a new era in the troubled relationship between Gaza and Egypt. It was an egregious error on his part.

The conversation between Haniyeh and President Morsi was not an easy one. The standard tokens of mutual respect and traditional greetings and pleasantries quickly deteriorated into a scathing dialogue during which Haniyeh could only conclude that Gaza would not appear anywhere near the top of Morsi’s list of priorities. By the time he realized that Morsi was concerned first and foremost with the interests of Egypt and the Muslim Brotherhood, and less with the problems of Gaza, it was too late.

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