Robert M. Danin

Middle East Matters

Danin analyzes critical developments and U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East.

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Voices From the Region: Egypt, Syria, Israel, Palestine, Iran, Iraq

by Robert M. Danin
December 8, 2012

Supporters of Egyptian president Morsi and members of the Muslim Brotherhood shout slogans during a funeral for fellow supporters who died in recent clashes Al Azhar mosque in Cairo on December 7, 2012 (Dalsh/Courtesy Reuters).


“I never thought I would say this, but even Mubarak was more savvy when he spoke in a time of crisis.” – Hossam Bahgat, executive director of the Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights

“I hope God will make me a martyr on the land of Palestine in Gaza.” – Hamas leader Khaled Meshaal after crossing into the Gaza Strip Friday for the first time

“He is a little Stalin” – Rafi Ayalon, the father of Israeli deputy foreign minister Danny Ayalon, said of Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman after his decision to drop Ayalon from the party list for the next Knesset

“Al-Maliki is not talking about Iranian intervention in all Iraqi affairs, and we have not heard any response to Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corp [IRGC] commander Qassem Soleimani’s statement that Iran has more influence than America in Iraq and that Washington should negotiate with Tehran, not Baghdad, regarding the situation in Iraq.” – Fugitive Iraqi vice president Tariq al-Hashemi

“The airport is now full of armored vehicles and soldiers…Civilians who approach it now do so at their own risk.” – Nabil al-Amir, Syrian insurgent spokesman

“I believe people are right to be very concerned…the way the process has been short-circuited” – UN human rights chief Navi Pillay on Egypt’s draft constitution Friday

“Officially we say we are not dealing with them, but things are changing before our eyes…If Khaled Meshaal can deliver, believe you me, someone here will talk to him, even behind the scenes.” –Uzi Rabi, director of the Moshe Dayan Centre for Middle Eastern Studies

“If I were in the place of authorities, I would not demand the lifting of the sanctions…I would instead tell our enemies to impose sanctions as much as they can, because we will discover our hidden capabilities… What we could not achieve in about two decades was achieved in one and a half years.” – General Mohammad Reza Naqdi, a senior commander of Iran’s Revolutionary Guard

“Today, Egypt is rewriting the history of the whole Arab and Islamic nation…Egypt has begun returning to its role in leading the Arab nation after many years that had been wasted by the corrupted.” – Hamas prime minister Ismail Haniyeh to a visiting Egyptian delegation

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