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It took just one Egyptian border guard to boost the nation amid normalisation with Israel

June 5, 2023 at 2:00 pm

Egyptians security guard between Egypt and Gaza Strip on 11 February 2017 [Ashraf Amra/Apaimages]

Today marks the 56th anniversary of the start of the 1967 Six Day War, and the terrible defeat of the Arabs by Israel. The Zionist enemy occupied Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula, the Golan Heights in Syria, and the West Bank and East Jerusalem in Palestine, with the latter including Al-Aqsa Mosque. The Islamic world suffers from the consequences to this day because the wound has not healed; indeed, it has festered.

However, some healing has taken place thanks to the action of one Egyptian border guard, police officer Mohammed Salah Ibrahim. He crossed the border into Israel on Saturday and killed three of the Zionist enemy’s soldiers and wounded some others before being killed himself. His identity was revealed by Israel’s Kan news channel: Ibrahim was 23 years old and from Ain Shams, Cairo, and he was serving in the North Sinai region.

Ibrahim knocked on the door of defeat, and it opened to illuminate the nation after the darkness that it has suffered for over half a century. Although this was an individual heroic act, it carries a lot of meaning and significance, teaching those who are sleeping lessons in geography, history, morality, national identity and nationalism.

The Egyptian authorities did not mention his name, as if they are ashamed of what he did. They shy away from such heroism, fearing any indication of it within Egypt’s armed forces.

Despite the differences in the Egyptian and Israeli narrative of the operation, as well as Ibrahim’s motives, they both confirm that he had planned the operation carefully and that he studied and knew the area well, including the surveillance point where the soldiers were killed. According to Israel’s Army Radio, the operation was not related to drug smuggling, as claimed initially by the Egyptian army. It added that the border guard had nationalistic motives, walking five kilometres from his position within Egypt and climbed a rocky area to reach the border fence. He then cut the lock on the emergency gate using military-grade equipment and crossed the border, approached the soldiers, and opened fire.

The radio report added that Ibrahim used a Kalashnikov rifle, and that a Qur’an was found next to his body. The suggestion is that he was affiliated with an “Islamist terrorist” group and was thus a “terrorist” himself, and not a hero. A knife and six magazines of 30 bullets each were also next to his body. There was no comment from the Egyptian military spokesman on these details.

This heroic policeman was not part of any system and should wake everyone up from the delusion and the national shame under which they have cowered for decades. We had thought that there was no way out of our dark and gloomy cave.

The incident reminds us of the similarly heroic act by Suleiman Khater in 1985. He killed Israeli soldiers dancing on an Egyptian flag on the border. It also reminds us of Ayman Hassan’s act in 1990, in which he killed an Israeli officer, two sergeants, a driver and a civilian employee of the so-called Israel Defence Forces.

READ: Despite peace and normalisation deals, Israel remains an alien state

All three operations indicate that, although many years have passed since the 1979 peace treaty was signed between Egypt and the Zionist enemy, and despite humiliation and oppression by the tyrannical Arab regimes, the Egyptians still hold Palestine and the Palestinians in their hearts. So much so, in fact, that someone like Mohammed Salah Ibrahim decided to sacrifice his life as a way to object to the Israeli crimes committed daily against the people of occupied Palestine, and to demonstrate the lie of security cooperation with the Zionist enemy. He also exposed the failure of the treaties of shame and normalisation with Israel.

What Ibrahim did was based on sound logic and instinct that does not need to be learned from the media or taught in schools. He was not influenced by the Camp David Accords; the political discourse and “peace process”; the normalisation “Abraham Accords”; and the submissive rush towards Tel Aviv. This has caused panic among the Zionists who are searching for a narrative that does not make Mohammed Salah Ibrahim a hero in the eyes of the Egyptians. They must be disappointed, because social media has been full of praise for his heroic act which filled the hearts of Egyptians with hope and joy.

Zionist Israel and its allies have realised that tyrannical regimes alone cannot protect them from the anger of the Arab people and their hatred of the apartheid state in their midst, no matter how many peace agreements are signed. They must accept the fact that the Arab nations reject the Zionist entity that has usurped the beloved land of Palestine, and that they have no other choice but to agree to a just solution to the Palestinian cause. Their once safe Egyptian flank, where the border guards protected the Zionists, is safe no longer. Tomorrow, it will be Jordan’s turn to bite the Zionist enemy from another “safe” side. Hence, the fear on Israeli faces.

At last, we have witnessed heroism that has removed the layers of dust clogging up Egypt’s national memory. The doors of hope and self-respect have been opened by an unknown hero who woke us up and became a son to the entire nation.

The views expressed in this article belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Middle East Monitor.