As the Egyptian army continues operations against armed terrorist groups in Sinai the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF) has said little about Israel's killing of five Egyptian soldiers in a cross-border attack.
The crisis erupted last Thursday when militants carried out three attacks against vehicles in the Israeli resort town of Eilat, killing eight people. Israel claimed the attackers had slipped over the border from Gaza into Egypt and thence to Eilat. Israeli security forces chased the attackers using Apache helicopters, from which they fired on an Egyptian border guard unit on duty north of Taba. Three soldiers were killed immediately. A further two died the following day from injuries sustained in the attack.
The killings sparked the most serious diplomatic crisis between Egypt and Israel since the Camp David peace accords three decades ago. Waves of contradicting reports appeared throughout Thursday night claiming there were more victims in Arish and confrontations along the Israeli-Egyptian border.
The incident prompted an outpouring of public anger in Egypt, and almost total silence on the part of the ruling military council.
1 O God, do not remain silent;
do not turn a deaf ear,
do not stand aloof, O God.
2 See how your enemies growl,
how your foes rear their heads.
3 With cunning they conspire against your people;
they plot against those you cherish.
4 "Come," they say, "let us destroy them as a nation,
so that Israel's name is remembered no more."
5 With one mind they plot together;
they form an alliance against you—
6 the tents of Edom and the Ishmaelites,
of Moab and the Hagrites,
7 Byblos, Ammon and Amalek,
Philistia, with the people of Tyre.
8 Even Assyria has joined them
to reinforce Lot's descendants.
9 Do to them as you did to Midian,
as you did to Sisera and Jabin at the river Kishon,
10 who perished at Endor
and became like dung on the ground.
11 Make their nobles like Oreb and Zeeb,
all their princes like Zebah and Zalmunna,
12 who said, "Let us take possession
of the pasturelands of God."
13 Make them like tumbleweed, my God,
like chaff before the wind.
14 As fire consumes the forest
or a flame sets the mountains ablaze,
15 so pursue them with your tempest
and terrify them with your storm.
16 Cover their faces with shame, LORD,
so that they will seek your name.
17 May they ever be ashamed and dismayed;
may they perish in disgrace.
18 Let them know that you, whose name is the LORD—
that you alone are the Most High over all the earth.