|6th of October Bridge in Cairo|
Anti-Israeli Sentiment in Egypt: Not About Palestine -Eric Trager
To assume that the Egyptian protesters who attacked the Israeli Embassy in Cairo were motivated by pro-Palestinian concerns is to completely ignore the sad truth that Egyptians overwhelmingly hate Israel for wholly Egyptian reasons.
Every day millions of Egyptians drive over the 6th of October Bridge [pictured], one of Cairo's busiest thoroughfares that was named for the date on which Egypt attacked Israel to launch the 1973 war. 500,000 Egyptians live in October 6th City southwest of Cairo, which is home to October 6th University.
An additional 140,000 Egyptians live in 10th of Ramadan City, which is named for the equivalent date on the Islamic calendar and houses the 10th of Ramadan University. Cairene schoolchildren visit the October War Panorama, where they are taught that Egyptian forces defeated the "enemy" in the 1973 war, without any mention of the Israeli tanks that were rolling towards Cairo as the war ended. Egyptians commemorate April 25, when Israel completed its withdrawal from Sinai in 1982, and October 6 as national holidays.
The success of Egypt's January revolt in forcing Hosni Mubarak's ouster unleashed an unprecedented wave of Nasserist-infused nationalism, inspiring calls from across the Egyptian political spectrum for the reconsideration of the Camp David Accords. Egyptians bristled, in particular, at the clauses limiting the number of Egyptian troops in Sinai, and they viewed amending these clauses as the next step towards restoring national dignity.