Last Friday, the House of Representatives voted unanimously to adopt Congressman Jeff Duncan's Amendment #201 to the FY13 National Defense Authorization Act. Congressman Duncan's Amendment would prohibit funding for the US Military's participation in joint exercises with the Egyptian military should the new Egyptian government violate or withdraw from the 1979 Israeli-Egyptian Peace Treaty.
Between 1948 and 2011, the U.S. has provided Egypt with $71.6 billion in bilateral foreign aid, including $1.3 billion in military aid annually from 1987 until now. The purpose of that aid has been twofold: U.S. policy toward Egypt has been an investment in regional stability and in sustaining the 1979 Israeli-Egyptian peace treaty.
In the first post-Mubarak parliamentary elections that were recently held, Islamist parties secured a vast majority in the Egyptian Parliament. While the Muslim Brotherhood (Freedom and Justice Party) has said it will honor Egypt's international agreements, it has carved out an exception for Israel, which it intends to put to a national referendum.
Recently, a member of the Muslim Brotherhood stated that the peace treaty with Israel is "just an agreement that can be changed."
"In a time of great instability, I believe that the U.S. must demand accountability for investments in Egypt and the surrounding region," said Duncan.
"A strong relationship between the United States, Israel, and Egypt benefits all of our countries. In light of this week's Egyptian presidential election, I applaud my colleagues in the House for supporting this amendment, communicating the gravity of this issue, and demonstrating our steadfast commitment to maintaining the 1979 Israeli-Egyptian Peace."