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This Might Not Be the Best Time ...

6:07 PM, Sep 12, 2012 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
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Seems Egypt is down on its luck and needs a little help. Not that much, really.  Five, maybe ten billion, "a senior EU official," said on Wednesday."

Since Wednesday follows Tuesday, one assumes that Mr. Official was aware of the recent unpleasantness in Cairo when he "said the European Union and other institutions and countries were considering financial support for Egypt in addition to a $4.8 billion loan which Cairo has requested from the International Monetary Fund (IMF)."

This strikes one as a little peculiar. In the first place, where is the money supposed to come from?  Why is Europe suddenly so flush?  It doesn't seem that long ago that it was imploding under the pressure of heavy debt and its trophy currency was on life support.  Now it has that kind of money for nation building?  And for a nation that hasn't been showing the West a lot of love lately.

Ah, but that may be the point since the EU,

sees the development of Arab Spring countries as an economic opportunity, but also fears the possibility of anti-European governments on the other side of the Mediterranean.
Last year, the European Union introduced a "more for more" policy under which it links economic aid to progress in civil rights and democracy.

One would like to ask Mr. Official:  "And how's that been working out for you?  Or hadn't you heard about the attack, yesterday, on the U.S. embassy?"

But, then, the U.S. gives Egypt a mere $1 billion a year.  Plainly, we need to come up with more than that. More for more. Works every time.

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