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Rantings of a Sandmonkey

Be forewarned: The writer of this blog is an extremely cynical, snarky, pro-US, secular, libertarian, disgruntled sandmonkey. If this is your cup of tea, please enjoy your stay here. If not, please sod off

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Open-air weapon smuggeling into Gaza

The Egyptian Secuirty authorities gotta be kidding me: Palestinian gunrunners smuggled hundreds of assault rifles and pistols across the Egyptian frontier into Gaza, dealers and border officials told The Associated Press on Wednesday. The influx confirmed Israeli fears about giving up border control and could further destabilize Gaza. Black market prices for weapons dropped sharply, with AK-47 assault rifles nearly cut in half to $1,300 and even steeper reductions for handguns. [...] Egypt had assured Israel it would prevent weapons smuggling once its troops take over from Israel along the Gaza frontier, and Cairo and the Palestinian Authority pledged to seal the once-heavily defended border by Wednesday evening. Thousands have crossed unhindered since Monday. Around 8 p.m. Wednesday, about two hours after the deadline for closing the border, an Egyptian officer bellowed into a bullhorn for Palestinians to stop entering Egypt and prepare to return to Gaza. The frontier was still porous later, however, with Egyptian police pushing back Palestinians scaling the concrete wall on the Gaza side and trying to sneak through the barbed-wire fence on the Egyptian side. Up to 750 Egyptian border guards were expected Thursday morning, Egyptian police said. Palestinian security forces in Gaza apparently were doing little to stop infiltrators. At midday, Hamas militants blew a hole in the Gaza wall, making it even easier for people to enter the 18-foot-wide buffer zone leading to Egypt's fence. Palestinian Interior Ministry spokesman Tawfiq Abu Khoussa told the AP the border was officially closed as of 6 p.m. but that Palestinians and Egyptians caught on the wrong side were being allowed to cross. He said there had been a small amount of arms smuggling. Just a small amount. No big deal. Riiiight. Why do I doubt that? Wait, I know: Another dealer, interviewed in a car outside the Rafah cemetery, said hundreds of AK-47s had been smuggled from Egypt since Monday. He said he has sold his loot to militants but declined to say how many pieces his runners brought back. [...] Khader, interviewed by phone, said his runners came back mainly with pistols and bullets, rather than assault rifles and rocket-propelled grenade launchers. "My people brought me lots of things, including pistols and gold," he said. A third dealer, who gave his name as Hafez, said competitors reported having $1 million worth of loot confiscated, including grenade launchers. "That's why everyone was focusing on small pieces," he said. Oh Boy.

3 Comments:

At 9/15/2005 08:54:00 AM, Blogger Gary Aminoff said...

Egypt should realize that Hamas is as much a danger to Egypt as it is to Israel. Allowing the border at Rafah to remain open and unmonitored will result, at some point in time, to deaths of Egyptians.

For its own safety, Egypt should monitor the border and prevent the flow of arms either in or out of Gaza.

 
At 9/15/2005 10:48:00 AM, Blogger The Sandmonkey said...

Gary, believe me, I get it! I just don't know what the security appartus is thinking. If anything, this whole thing will end up biting us in the ass. But no one listens to me!

 
At 9/15/2005 12:51:00 PM, Blogger Papa Ray said...

Boy, those guys are getting ripped off. I remember hearing early last year you could buy AKs in Cambodia and Iraq for ten dollars American. I think the price in Iraq has went up but definatly not that high.

Price Gouging, everywhere, whats the world coming to.

Papa Ray
West Texas
USA

 

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